Week of September 6, 2009
Dear CSA Members,
The wonderful manicure and pedicure I treated myself to last week as mother of the bride has started to chip and life is getting back to “normal”. Our family celebrated the wedding of our youngest daughter Caia to Lance Shoffner from Colorado Springs, Colorado just a short forty eight hours ago. The preparation has been going on for months and now everything came together (or not) for the three o’clock ceremony in our front yard on Saturday. The sunflowers bloomed, the mulch was laid and the lawn was freshly mown.
We were able to provide the entire menu from our farm expect for the baked beans, the pork (that came from the Madsens twenty miles away in Audubon County) and the cake – that came from Nadine King in Lewis. My dear friend LaVon Eblen was in charge of the kitchen with able help from Margaret Henderson and the support team of the Brighton 4-H Club. The reception was held at the Marne Community Center – what a great facility for a small wedding.
The friends and family from Colorado started arriving on Thursday and made Harrisdale Homestead their headquarters. Everyone fell in love with Southwest Iowa and the home places of the Harris O’Brien family. Of course it didn’t hurt that the weather was exceptionally beautiful – no rain and very little humidity. We couldn’t have asked for a more perfect time.
Most of the guests and family left on Monday morning and then it was time for a reality check – no interns and much work to do in order to get harvesting done for a Tuesday delivery. Hmmmm…… As I was picking beans on Monday afternoon (there are once again Roman Flat Beans), it occurred to me just how lucky I have been this summer to have good weather for the crops and good help with the CSA. I already miss Catie and Emily. Those two were exceptional help and great to have around just for the company. They are now off on their adventures and hopefully we will hear from them occasionally.
Last week I put some cauliflower in some of your boxes. I did this with trepidation because cauliflower is hard to grow and sometimes has a bitter taste. I apologize to those of you who got poor tasting cauliflower. I taste tested much of it as I harvested it but tastes differ and I may not have the ability to taste the bitterness.
You will be getting carrots this week once again. You probably have noticed misshapen ones. This is what I learned from the University of Illinois Extension website -- “Forking may result from attacks of root-knot nematodes, from stones, from deep and close cultivation or (more frequently) from planting in a soil that was poorly prepared. Twisting and intertwining result from seeding too thickly and inadequate thinning of seedlings.” I believe that we planted in soil that was properly prepared but may have had some deep and close cultivation. I appreciate having the internet so I can find the answers to perplexing questions.
Soon you will be having lettuce, radishes and spinach for some great fall salad. It is very apparent that the produce is on the downhill side but there is much yet to come for the next four weeks.
Until next week…..