While we give the peppers and tomatoes another week before adding them into Whole Farm baskets, this week highlights cucurbits – members of the squash family. Each basket will contain 3 lb of yellow squash, 1 lb of zucchini, and 1 lb of cucumbers. Check out our online farmers market for a la carte items – though we don’t have peppers and tomatoes in abundance yet, we will have limited quantities available throughout the week!
We are definitely finalizing the transition into summer. Except for Swiss chard, and a little bit of remaining kale, everything we planted for spring has been fully harvested. Last year, we were selling spring veggies until the end of June, which continues to show how much earlier spring came (and went) this year – as if we needed more evidence! Even the weather is finally on board with what season the calendar says it is. Looking ahead at our 7-day forecast, six days show at least a 30% chance of rain, so our summer afternoon thunderstorm pattern seems to be settling in. Last week’s rains were so welcome. We went most of the week without having to irrigate the veggies, and the bees should certainly benefit from an increase in nectar flow in the surrounding vegetation.
We planted peanuts for fall harvest this weekend, with seed saved from last year. As we were planting, it made me happy to know that what we produced last year could be carried forward to provide another harvest this year. We also visited the “bamboo forest” again, this time for make bamboo tepees to support our pickling cucumbers. The new arrangement makes it so much easier to see and harvest them!
Speaking of cucumbers, a few weeks ago at the grocery store, I noticed a bag of cucumbers labeled “Fresh Pickles” and giggled a little at how silly that seemed. In the time since then, I’ve caught myself thinking about them a few times, wondering if there was something I’d missed. Maybe they were in a brine, and they were freshly made commercial refrigerator pickles. My curiosity got the better of me, so I walked by them at the store again this weekend, and sure enough, it is simply a bag of raw pickling cucumbers. I want to know the story behind it, but certainly it involved some market research that concluded consumers don’t know that pickles come from cucumbers, or that cucumbers are now passe but pickles have a more favorable ring to them, kind of like how prunes are often sold as “dried plums” to avoid negative associations people might have with prunes. It made me realize how fortunate and happy I am to have such a direct connection with my food and with the people who consume it – all of you! No gimmicks or marketing ploys needed – just good fresh food, from our farm to your table.