Farming often requires an inventive and improvisational outlook. We carefully plan our planting schedule, crop varieties, and production goals, and still we face uncertainty. Weather, pests, disease, and weeds can all disrupt our carefully made projections. However, one of the skills that this unpredictability fosters in your farmers is resourcefulness.
We have been fortunate this season to not face any major weather or pest related setbacks. We still like to think creatively to bring you interesting and exciting things in your shares. One way we can do this is by foraging. Our land is surrounded by forests, meadows, and many wild plants. These uncultivated trees, shrubs, brambles, and greens can provide vibrant and exciting flavors that you simply can’t find in the grocery store.
Recently we have noticed a number of mulberry trees near our vegetable fields. Some of these were planted by either our current land owner or previous farmers. Many of them are the wild and native Morus rubra, a type of mulberry used by Native Americans and early colonial settlers of this region of the US. Foraging allows us to farm in concert with the natural production of the forest, while also introducing something unique and delicious to your shares. We hope you enjoy the mulberries this week!
For the past few shares, we have also been doing a foraging of a different type. As some of you may know, Billy grew up very near to the land we are currently farming. In fact, his parents often referred to their property as ‘Crooked Fence Farm’ and that was the inspiration for our name! Since we are just down the lane from his parents, we get lots of visits and support from them.
One major way they have been helping us out is with your flower bouquets. Billy’s mother, Charlotte, is an accomplished home gardener, and has cultivated beautiful perennial flowers for many years. Since our perennial flowers are still getting established, Charlotte’s blooms have bolstered your most recent bouquets. Her peonies, roses, lilies, and more have been featured and we are so grateful to have them while our plants catch up.
Finally, we’d like to make one note about this week’s share: it may seem quite heavy on greens. The late spring/early summer growing season is often dominated by greens, and we know that can feel like too much of a good thing sometimes. We are highlighting creative greens recipes in this week’s delivery, and we’ll be posting some more ideas on the blog. And as the summer warms up, our carrots, beets, cucumbers, and squash (and more!) will be making appearances soon. Thanks for eating seasonally with us and we hope you are loving the CSA so far.
Billy, Sarah, & Chesna