Summary: The cold wet spring, coupled with much cooler than normal temperatures in the past 2 weeks, have combined to produce an unusual mix of early August vegetables for your boxes. The following is a quick report touching on a number of key crops.
Tomatoes: This may turn out to be the single greatest disappointment of 2013. There are both hybrid and heirloom varieties in your boxes this week, and there will be for the next several. But the quality is not great; epidemic disease set in during the critically wet month of May, and the vines are not healthy. But here’s where having a commercial tomato planting backing up your CSA program is a huge help. We’re simply diverting all tomatoes into CSA shares, zeroing out commitments to our commercial partners in the process. After all, you purchased your toms way back in March and April, when the plants were happy as clams in the greenhouse!
Muskmelons and Watermelons: A good looking crop considering the circumstances- melons like it hot and dry- but they’re delayed a good 2 weeks over normal. Look for them to begin appearing in mid to late August.
Peppers and Eggplants: Very strong crop. Both will be in boxes- many varieties- for weeks to come. Ripe reds and yellows in a couple of weeks (like melons, these require heat and time).
Sweet Corn: A difficult year for us so far. What we’ve had has been very good eating, and there’s lots more in the field for the next 3-4 weeks. But the raccoons have taken WAY more than their share despite our best fencing and live trapping efforts. And we had ear worms and blackbirds shredding silk ends early on, which accounts for the trimmed ears last week. We figure that it’s better to send you more trimmed ears than fewer perfect ones, however. We hope you agree…
Salad Mix and Bunched Greens (Kales etc): Doing way better with the cool summer than they normally would. We hope you’re enjoying them as we are.
Green Beans and Edemame: Also doing well. This week we’re into planting #3 of green beans- next week should see purple beans on your box (or perhaps the following week if it stays so crazy cool). Edemame beans are on the way for sure next week.
Broccoli, Cauliflower and Cabbages (including savoy and Napa): The nicest we’ve seen in years. Should be plenty for all boxes through September and October.
Winter Squash: Also a bumper crop. Likely to start a bit late this year (early to mid September) due to cool weather. But when it’s ready, winter squash will be here to stay all fall (and well into winter shares as well!).
Carrots: Summer carrots were a victim of the freak wet spring this year; we just couldn’t get ground ready and early carrots seeded in a time frame that made sense. Hence, no carrots in July and August boxes. But the big fall planting- the source for all those fabulous October and winter share carrots- is doing very well. So carrots are on the way, and well worth waiting for!