Sarah Baylis- Field Production Assistant, CSA Assistant & IPM Strategist

Hello CSA members! I am so excited to be writing to you and want to thank you all for your support! I love packing the CSA boxes with Casey every week and getting to see the great variety of crops y’all are getting. I too try to use the recipes in the newsletter and get better acquainted with some of the crops I don’t know as well like kohlrabi and escarole!

There are lots of exciting happenings on the farm these days. We are starting to see some of our first tomatoes. We have the beautiful early girls, lil’ goldies, and the Juliet romas. All of which are making our market displays as beautiful as ever! We have another round of basil up that is beautiful and has not been eaten by those pesky cucumber beetles which seem to have enjoyed indulging on the last round of basil. I am going to do some research on how to combat the cucumber beetle since it seems to be getting to some other crops including the beautiful rainbow chard. I must defend our veggies!

Last week I got to harvest apples in our orchard for the first time and it was a really amazing experience. Not to mention that the ‘Sunrise’ apples we picked are delicious! They are perfectly crispy, tart, and sweet all at the same time. Casey gave me a great run down of how to harvest and showed me the map of all the trees. She explained that the orchard is divided by variety and we harvest from the front to back. I was sad to learn that the trees only produce fruit once a year which means after we harvest a certain variety we will not see it until the next year. However, Casey mentioned that that is what makes them so special! I agree, and now will really treasure each variety as it is picked! I am most excited to try the “snow white” apple (‘Spartan’) which has a purple skin and a pure white flesh!

The crew and I recently spent time weeding what will be this seasons’ dry bean crop in the back 40. Lemme me tell you there were quite a lot of weeds back there and they were all intertwined with the beans! But luckily we were able to get all 6 acres weeded by hand and they are looking great! I can’t wait to harvest all the beautiful varieties when the time comes. All the other crops in the back 40 are looking beautiful too! I am excited for potatoes, which are growing near the beans. Such a versatile and gratifying food! So many possibilities from tater tots, homemade French fries, and potato leek soup to mention a few of my favorite uses. Carrots are looking better than ever. Nothing like a cold kale, apple, carrot juice to get you through the hot day! Maybe one day we will have a juice bar at the farm—one day.

Anyways that’s all for now. Hope you all are enjoying the boxes this season and thanks for reading!

Take care, Sarah