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HomeOrganic FarmingNewsletter – August 15, 2022

Newsletter – August 15, 2022

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NOTE: This blog is posted by a volunteer. No one from the farm checks or responds to messages here. You must contact the farm directly with any questions, comments, etc

This week is week #10 of the 18-week season. You should be getting: Yukon Gold Potatoes, yellow onions, cucumbers, summer squash, red tomatoes, fennel, basil, Honeydew melons, bell peppers, jalapeños, and carrots.

Fruit: Hello from First Fruits Organic Farms! We hope you have been enjoying the fruit in your CSA shares! After several challenging seasons due to freezes, we are happy to have a great crop this year. Peaches are ripening up on our trees rapidly, and you can anticipate another 10lb case in your fruit share this week. These are Coral Star and Starfire peaches, which are freestone varieties — great for eating fresh or processing. We have tried to space fruit shipments out as much as the crop will allow, but if these shipments of peaches are more than you can eat fresh, the peaches can easily be sliced and canned or frozen or can be dried in your oven by placing slices in an oven at 200 degrees until they reach your desired drying stage- usually about four hours. Your February self will thank your August self!

Enjoy the peaches! A wide variety of fruit at our farm in Paonia, Colorado is growing beautifully in our orchards, and we plan to keep the fruit flowing from our farm to your homes. Kacey & Noah Kropp

Honey & Oil: This is another honey and oil delivery week. Those of you who ordered monthly and Bi-monthly, will be getting that this week. It has been extremely dry at the farm, and we have not been getting the rain everyone else has been getting. The bees are struggling a little bit and spend more time cooling the hive than gathering nectar. Those of you who ordered a one-time delivery of honey will get that next month.

Bags: I have been informed that we are not getting our bean bags back. We would like to have those back so they can be reused. Also, as a reminder, please clear out all debris from your produce bags. We are seeing a lot of onion skins left behind. These need to be removed before returning them to your DC. Thank you.

Billing: Late payments have been applied to accounts where no payment was received by the end of July.  Those of you who received a late fee will also receive another statement this week. We did send statements out a couple weeks ago reminding everyone of the due dates. If there are no payments received the day before your distribution next week, you will no longer receive your produce or any add-ons until your balance is paid in full. 

Half of your balance was due July 1st with the remaining balance due by September 1st. If you have been sending regular payments or have contacted the office about your plan to pay, this does not apply to you.  This also does not apply to those with a winter share or animals. But we do need your deposits for any animals you are purchasing, or you may be taken off the list. We don’t want to see members miss out on the remaining goodies to come! If you have any questions, please email or call the office. The office hours are currently 7am to 4pm.  We do appreciate each & every one of you! 

Ten years ago, we were worrying about our water and whether it would last until the end of the season.

Here is an overview of 2012 written in January 2013:

When Jerry and I started farming for his father in 1985, we did not have crops ready for harvest until the middle of July. Since then, we have added three weeks of harvest to the beginning of the season and three weeks at the end.

Nothing shouts climate change more than when you can start your summer season the first week of June! It is a startling and scary fact that our weather is changing. Our water was restricted from the start of the season. We had to decide what would get watered and what would not. Most of our water went to growing vegetables. We decided to let the alfalfa fields die off completely. Our pastures were watered just enough to keep them alive, and we grew a little corn for the animals. By seasons end our reservoirs were drained! You can expect to see 2012 in the record books for years to come.

The nice surprise that came out of this season was how early we could start harvesting and the quality of the produce. It doesn’t matter if the produce is still on the plants or has been harvested; just as soon as it gets wet (from rain or washing) the produce starts to break down. With no rain in sight (or hail), the quality of the produce went off the charts! The Full Share received 561 pounds, Half Share received 378 pounds and the Single Share received 246 pounds. This was an 11% increase over 2011 when we got all that rain and four hailstorms. The average price of your produce was $1.18 a pound. (Last year we averaged around $1.35 lb.)

Hope you all have a great week! 

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