Peregrine Farm News Vol. 8 #25, 9/15/11

What’s been going on?

This teaching class on Wednesday mornings is throwing more of a kink into the weekly schedule than I imagined it would, which is why these last few weeks of the newsletter are coming out on Thursdays instead. I spend my Wednesday early morning hours preparing for teaching and in some cases good parts of Tuesday afternoon.

I have taught all of the topics in this class many times but I am always looking for a new angle or piece of information that makes something like the importance of soil organic matter frighteningly clear. Or how to explain the subtle difference between the classic American/conventional agriculture mindset of maximum yield at all costs versus a balanced system approach where pushing for that extra pound of tomatoes is not worth the cost of the additional inputs or labor or their possible detrimental effects on the whole system.

One of the intriguing aspects of this class is both Glenn and Jennie (aka the “Staff) are sitting in as well. The rest of the students have had a lot of “book learning” but little practical experience while Glenn and Jennie have had substantial on farm experience but essentially no theoretical, science based, exposure to farming. It is great for me to be able to talk about a sustainable ag principle and have them there. I can say “You know it’s like this at the farm” and they immediately understand versus showing pictures of the same thing to the rest of the class. While the pictures are valuable they haven’t lived it like Glenn and Jennie have.

We are definitely in the short rows now. Only a few weeks left for us at market and we can see the end. Crops going out, new ones being planted but with far away harvest dates. The anemones and ranunculus went in this week and we won’t cut the first stem until February, next week the Sweet William gets planted and it will be May until it is ready for market! Patience my friend, patience.

Picture of the Week

The long view- picking the last tomatoes, some already gone and uncovered, crops mowed, turkeys enjoying the rest.

What’s going to be at the market?

Don’t forget about that Thanksgiving Turkey, reserve now while the selection is ample.

It is definitely fall when we are down to just a few flowers. Crested Celosia with the colors of autumn. Lots of great ornamental peppers. Plenty of fragrant Oriental Lilies in white and pink.

We will be roasting Saturday even if it is threatening rain. In Sweet peppers we have a large supply of Red bells, with small amounts of Yellow Bells. Small amounts of Purple Bells, lime green Cubanelles and Corno di Toros. In hot types there is still a fair amount of Anaheim, Poblano, Serrano, Cayenne and Passilla. Very few Jalapenos. The Padrones and Shishitos are slowing down. Yellow and Red Habaneros and Aji Dulce, the habanero flavor without the heat.

Tomato supply is going, going, almost gone. In Reds there is a small amount of Big Beefs. In cherry types there is a small supply of Sungolds.

More of the awesome Italian heirloom Eggplant. Still plenty of Red Onions! Winter Squash with Butternut, Acorn, Spaghetti and our favorite Sweet Dumpling which is the sweetest of them all, no added sugar required! Look for more of the baby Ginger and Summer Crisp Lettuce, Japanese Turnips.

As a reminder if there is anything that you would like for us to hold for you at market just let us know by e-mail, by the evening before, and we will be glad to put it aside for you.

Hope to see you all at the market!

Alex and Betsy


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