Sept. 12, 2012

Hello everyone,

Well that was close–4 degrees C. on Monday night. I drove to market in early a.m. Tuesday past patchy frosted grass and feared the worst for the beloved garden. Here we had just gotten the best rain all season on Sat. last and I figured we deserved at least a few more weeks of good growing weather to make up for the drought. To end it all with a killing frost made me cry foul.

I returned late afternoon from market and headed straight for the garden, discovered all was well with the exception of a light bronzing on the basil, which I can readily accept, since I had picked the good parts the night before. I am very grateful; there are two plantings of beans just loaded with blossoms and baby beans, plus the many green tomatoes that will now have a chance, at least for a while.

Certainly the weather feels more fall like and I am preserving and freezing and saving seeds. This is time consuming work that gets done largely on Sun and Mon. and leaves me with no down time. The feeling of well being and security is more than worth it, but there is no time at all for plant care, only harvesting, and even that is hard to get through. Onions, for instance, should be harvested in the dry weather of August. There is a tiny reprieve in that the moon is currently waning, but after that, if the onions are still in the ground, they start growing again and will not store properly. At present I have about 2/3 done; the rest is on this Sunday’s agenda–you can see how quickly that day gets gobbled up!

On to your boxes: BB(beautiful broccoli) for all. Note the heat stress has diminished, so improved quality. I picked the first parsnips and had some for breakfast, to be sure they are not woody. They are still quite mild in flavor (the sugars get put down by the plant in response to the weather getting colder) so might do well with a little seasoning. What came to mind was sauteing with the Japanese standby of soy sauce and sugar, and mizuna ( large boxes) could go well with that. Small boxes have either chinese cabbage or the little Jersey Wakefield salad cabbage, unless you’re the one who requested tomatoes–wishes gladly granted, just leave a note or phone and I’ll do my best. Celery , green Welsh onion and salad greens round out this week’s offering.

I am starting to think of next year. With the prices of everything going up, the amount of vegetables in each box has to get smaller to stay within budget. What do you think of small boxes at $20 a week and large at $30 (up from $16 and $25)?Please let me know. Also, we have a very small group this year; if it gets any smaller it would not be worth my while to continue. So spread the word and let’s see if we can’t get a few more people to join in next year.

Till next time,

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