Making like squirrels

This week’s share contents are now posted, sorry for the delay!

We are squirreling away food for the winter. Daily harvests of produce – tons of food – are underway in a race against the killing frosts we know are just around the corner. So far, we have gathered 2,800 pounds of storage cabbage, 1,400 pounds of storage kohlrabi, 2,400 pounds of storage potatoes, 16,000 pounds of butternut winter squash, around 1,000 pounds of storage onions and shallots and 400 pounds of sweet potatoes (hasn’t been such a great year for alliums or sweet potatoes). We’ve more regular potatoes to harvest, maybe 1500 pounds, before the soil gets cold.

We will take a short break from our bulk harvests while we let the cold sweeten the carrots, Gilfeather turnips, parsnips, spinach, watermelon radishes and the kales. Then, before the ground freezes we will be at it again, bringing in root crops to store in our root cellar. Kale can withstand and is greatly improved by cold weather, so we leave it in the fields, harvesting it through January.

Not all crops can be harvested before the frost. You’ve probably noticed that the white row cover and metal hoops have appeared in the fields you walk by on your way to the Pick-Your-Own gardens. When the temps threaten to drop below freezing we will pull the white row covers over the tender heads of lettuce, radicchio, spinach and other crops that would be damaged without protection.

In sum, your farmers are a bit more squirrely than usual these days.  All in service of the upcoming Fall/Extended-Season CSA share and possibly (knock on wood! cross your fingers!) a few winter distributions in January and February (!)

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