Meet this week’s Mac veggies:
(Apparently getting the new computer up and running hasn’t been a high priority. All the photos are on the camera, ready to load sometime soon!)
- Tomatoes — Everywhere I go this time of year, I get tomato updates from random strangers. This year, not surprisingly, most folks still have green fruit hanging on their plants. Hopefully we’ll have a warm Indian summer to ripen them, but in the meantime our tomatoes are pumping out the delicious red tomatoes already! For this week’s share, the crew picked enough tomatoes for everyone to get FIVE pounds each!!!!! That’s a lot of tomatoes! Enjoy!
- Zucchini & summer squash — A few weeks back, I was inspired to make zucchini bread for the first time in years. I even bought (unbleached) white flour, sugar, and chocolate chips (items we don’t keep in the house). It was SO. GOOD. Find the recipe in this newsletter, along with another indulgent recipe for Double Chocolate Zucchini Cake. There’s something so fun about turning green vegetables into sweet treats!
- Sweet onions — These are now dry sweet onions, so you can store them on your counter (be sure to peel off the dry skin now too!).
I’m sure I’d heard or read the word “fecundity” prior to reading Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard, but if so, I didn’t really notice or fully absorb it until then.
Honestly, I’m not one of those huge fans of Pilgrim (sorry to everyone who is!), and I’m not a huge fan of the word “fecundity” either — it doesn’t flow off the tongue with the same poetic cadence of the close synonym “abundant,” which is one of my favorite descriptions of everything good on the farm.
All the same, Dillard does a beautiful job connecting this word to particular natural phenomena. Thus, when August rolls around, “fecundity” comes to my mind. There is something almost over-whelming about this season and its ability to produce; no other word seems quite right.
Grains are being harvested all over the valley (think of how each of those grains is a seed, capable of multiplying into a new stock of grain!); apples are ripening in orchards; our fields are full with almost every kind of vegetable!
Right now, the valley isn’t just abundant; it’s ridiculously over-flowing with everything related to plant reproduction and food capacity — fecundity. Everywhere I look, I see seeds and grains practically bursting from their husks with vibrant new life, readying themselves for another season — fecundity. Casey began cleaning our first vegetable seed crop this weekend: sugar snap peas rolling all over the driveway as he separated them from the chaff — fecundity. And, along the wild edges of the cultivated fields, blackberries are ripening, black fruit softening to perfection and filling the air with the sweetest fragrance I know — fecundity!
All this life at the tail end of an otherwise cool and mild season — it’s amazing how quickly the crops can catch up with just a little summer heat! I hear the grain crops are coming in later than normal but at higher yields, thanks to the summer rains. We certainly still see signs of the season in our fields, but our winter squash have caught up, set fruit, and are ripening, which feels like a hopeful indicator for how the summer will close.
This last Saturday, we hit 90° on the farm for the first time this entire summer — a milestone we’ve sometimes hit as early as May in past years. Being so late in coming made it easy to enjoy the heat, knowing that it would be fleeting this year. We picked blackberries in the cool morning shade, canned jam during Rusty’s nap, and then rode bikes to the river for an after dinner swim/rock throwing session. Incidentally, that same day it hit 90°, we saw the first of the Canada Geese here on the island. Just as one season reaches its peak, we start the slide into the next …
Yes, fall is gathering in the morning shadows, preparing to pounce. But, there is so much sweetness in August, as the world finishes its work of this season and sets the stage for the next. As always, we feel so grateful to be intimately connected to these turnings and seasonal high points. We hope that you too have been savoring August treats: the warmth, blackberries, and all these delicious summer fruits from the fields!
Enjoy this week’s vegetables!
Your farmers, Katie & Casey Kulla
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CSA potluck this weekend!
Our annual summer CSA potluck is this Saturday, August 27!
Join us at 6ish for a potluck dinner. Bring a dish to share (salad, side dish, main dish, dessert). If you can, please bring your own plate and cutlery (we have extras, but we don’t want to run out if lots of folks come!). We’ll share a meal, conversation, and then Farmer Casey will give a walking tour of the farm during “golden hour” (when everything glows!).
This is always a fun, intimate event, and it’s a great way to meet new people who have shared interests (good food, sustainable living, etc.) And, if you’d like to pick blackberries in a safe, organic environment away from busy roads, feel free to bring containers with you and pick along our creek!
Directions: Take HWY-18 to Dayton exit. Head South straight through town, and stay on Wallace Rd/HWY-221 for about six miles. Turn LEFT onto Grand Island Rd. Go over the bridge, and then turn RIGHT onto SE Upper Island Rd. Our driveway is immediately on your LEFT. Park anywhere safe and join us for the potluck under our enormous walnut tree (behind the two-story cedar house in back).