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August Crop Notes

Posted 8/2/2018 10:47am by Stephanie Bartel.

I want to tell you the story of the deer, the woodchuck, and the missing tractor pin, but no one would believe it anyway. So here's a more important story, a crop update! I won't dig into all the crops, but here's a few notes on some of the bigger ones.

Today we are going to dig the first of our potato crop. Despite a late start and a dry season, it looks like we may have a pretty good crop. But we won't know until we dig down and find the potatoes. (I test-dug a few plants last Saturday and they were excellent!) It's like digging for gold, and is such a delight to find these treasures hidden among the dirt and rocks. 
Our cucumber crop was the highlight of the first half of the season. Mostly what you received came from our cucumber greenhouse. It is still producing, and likely will for another week or two. But expect less of these in the coming weeks. The field ones have produced some too, and we have a later planting which includes a lemon cucumber variety. But they aren't likely to produce more than one or two per member to try out. Other late cucumbers may give us a nice harvest, but we shouldn't expect quite the same as we've been having in the past weeks.
Sungold Cherry Tomatoes are just starting to come in. They are a bright spot in the field. They are ripe when they are orange, and very sweet. A member favorite that we hope to have regularly until fall.
Our Greenhouse Tomatoe plants aren't doing well at all, stricken by early blight or something of the sort. They seem to be fading already, rather than producing into September like usual. We think that our field tomatoes will produce enough so you won't notice the shortage of greenhouse ones too much. But our favorite farm-bred variety, Goldie (the big orange/yellow tomato) isn't likely to reach you too often.
Summer staples like zucchini, yellow squash, peppers and eggplant are doing well. Yellow squash is about finished, but then we have a later planting of a patty-pan yellow squash to take it's place. 
Cantalopes look great, and should be ready to start harvesting in a week or two.  I think we'll have enough to go around this year, unlike last year. 
Garlic is a crop failure this year, one of the biggest disappointments we've seen. Most of it just didn't make it up this spring, and what did was weak to begin with. Along with a waaay to dry eight weeks in late May through early July adds up to virtually no crop at all. We'll try to give a bulb or two out next week. And we will buy-in bulbs to plant for next year's seed (normally we save our own, but in doing so we'd have absoultely no bulbs to give you this year).
Fall brassicas like cabbage, cauliflower, and broccoli look healthy. They usually mature for the last of our boxes in late September through October. They taste best after going through some cool days and even frosty nights.
We started planting our fall greens, including spinach, arugula, salad mix, and salad turnips and radishes. These, along with winter squash (which looks great out in the field now! Small fruits are already on most of the varieties, including acorn, delicata, pie pumpkin, and more).
Sometimes early August boxes are a little small, since we don't have many spring greens, and we don't have any fall brassicas (but our red spring cabbage looks good for next week's harvest!). But if our melons, corn, potatoes, and tomatoes do alright, it will at least be a tasty month of in-season, farm-fresh eating!
I saw some geese fly overhead this morning while we were picking the cherry tomatoes. The sound of geese makes me think of fall on it's way. But wait! I called up to them, First we want melon season, then we want fall!! 
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