The moment we’ve all been waiting for is finally here! This coming Wednesday, July 4, your first baskets of the season will be ready! Although this marks the beginning of the season for our CSA members, we here at Wellspring Gardens have been working behind the scenes for four months to prepare for this day. Beginning with the first seedlings planted in the greenhouse in March, through the garden prep and planting, to these past few weeks of weeding, mulching, staking and pruning, all available hands have been busy.
We have been greatly aided this year by the welcome addition of two farming interns, Amanda and Shaliz, who can consider themselves experts after these past two months of intensive gardening. Joe (the infrastructure guy) has been instrumental in getting and keeping all things technical and mechanical operating and our son Napoleon has jumped on board this year in a big way, running the tractors for bed prep, designing various improvements to our systems and lending a hand with the construction of our mobile chicken pens and the cabin renovations.
Some of you have already been out and gotten your hands dirty either weeding, planting, watering the greenhouses or helping with the intern cabin renovations. We really enjoy the fresh faces and new perspectives you bring and are always happy to have you join us in growing your food.
In order to balance the harvesting load between CSA and the bi-weekly Deep River Farmers’ Market, we will be dividing the half-shares so that our pick-up numbers are the same every week. This basically means 27 baskets for us to prepare each week (23 full shares and 4 half). I will send a separate email to the half-share members assigning them their pick-up schedules.
For those of you who are joining us for the first time this year, here is some useful information:
- Bring a medium-sized cooler or container for your veggies. Although we call it a “basket,” technically we only provide the contents.
- It’s a good idea to print out your weekly email with the list of veggies so you can be sure you don’t forget items (there will also be a list posted on the blackboard here).
- Items will be either bagged, bunched or packed in pints or quarts. Please empty the contents of the pints or quarts and leave the containers with us.
- Arrive between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. on pick-up days, which will always be Wednesdays.
- If you can’t pick up or think you’ll be late, please email me and we’ll make alternate arrangements.
- If you plan to be away and are unable to pick up your basket, consider asking a friend to enjoy it or donating it to North Renfrew Family Services.
- Someone, either myself or one of our interns, will always be on hand to answer questions and help you.
- We do our best to predict what will be in your baskets when we send out our weekly emails. Sometimes harvest day produces a surprise and your veggie list may change slightly.
- As the season advances, so do the variety and quantity of veggies in your share.
The theme for this week’s basket is “greens.”
Chard/beet top medley
Kale or “kale lite” (Red Russian kale, which is very tender and shreds up easily into tender salad greens)
Easter Egg radishes
If you’re short on ideas for enjoying the bounty, I’ve included a few serving suggestions:
Raw Kale Salad (we love this one and often change it up by using other citrus, adding seeds, raisins or nuts…)
Garlic Scape Pesto (uses arugula instead of basil)
Member Jen Bergevin shared her five-day menu with us, incorporating the contents of the basket:
Greens and Hollandaise Stack served with sliced tomatoes
Using the Leftovers from the bruschetta, Cannellini and Kale Soup
Finally ending the week with Chicken Florentine Pesto Pasta
Thanks Jen for the menu inspirations!