In your share this week:
- Salad Mix (with added Red Veined Sorrel, because it's so darn beautiful!)
- Zucchini and/or Summer Squash (still keeping track and rotating it around so everyone gets some)
- Italian Parsley
- Butter Bib Head Lettuce
- Red Russian Kale, a smaller amount because of the freeze (see below)
- Sweet Yellow Walla Walla Onion
- Sugar Snap Peas, the kind you can eat whole (don't have to shell)
One of our Workshare crew members has stopped coming to help on the farm due to health concerns. If you know anyone who would like to join us for the rest of the season, please have them get a hold of me. We are looking for someone who can help harvest on Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday mornings. Soon, when school starts, we'll also be working many Friday or Saturday mornings. We are coming into the most bounteous part of the season, so this is a great time to join EverGreen Farm.
Our big news of the week is the unfortunate freeze of August 4th.
We had been watching the forecast carefully, with an eye on how cold it might drop on Wednesday night. It bounced around a bit. 30. 32. 30. 34. 34. 34. So, with the threat of a freeze we did the usual - row covers on all sensitive crops (tomatoes, basil, peppers, cukes, beans, zucchini, squash, etc.) and closing ALL greenhouses up tight. It was a real disappointment to go out on Thursday morning and see the results of what was more likely a drop of temps down into the 20's.
Our squash and zucchini plants took a real hit, despite being in a greenhouse and under a thick row cover. You can see in the photo above how the upper leaves were killed off. Underneath are still many little yellow blossoms and tiny fruit. This kind of stress is likely to slow down the heavy production we typically enjoy through the end of summer, but I like to think that the little yellow blossoms are telling us to not give up on them just yet.
The other surprise was seeing the rows of badly frozen leafy greens in greenhouse 3 - our kale, collard greens, Swiss chard, and cabbage plants. This type of damage doesn't usually occur with just a mild frost. It had to have gotten much colder for these hardy greens to die off. We decided it would be best for the plants if we picked out all the dead leaves in hopes that the smaller, inner leaves would rebound to bring us more weeks of harvest longer into the season. This has taken precious time, but it's probably worth it.
Our potatoes also took a pretty bad hit. Farmer Shain has been saying for weeks that it's been one of our best years for growing potatoes. We had covered the rows back in June when it threatened to freeze then left the row covers on for another cold night a week or so later. Leaving the covers in place all this time really accelerated the growth of the plants and we had high hopes for increased yields underground as well. But after last week, where about 50% for the upper leaves are now dead, Shain is just hoping for a decent harvest. We'll have to wait and see. We don't dig potatoes until a hard freeze kills off the plants entirely.
Otherwise, I'm happy to say there was only minimal damage to any other crops. Oddly enough, the peas we picked for this week's share were fine - growing outside, uncovered, and just a dozen or so yards away from the potatoes. Salad greens also came out fine, just took a little extra time to clean up, but it was worth it. No real damage to our beloved heat loving crops growing in greenhouses 5 & 6.
Golden beets next week!
I'd love to share pictures of the meals you are making with your veggies, or recipes. Send them to me by email.
Have a great week and ENJOY your veggies!