Down on the farm: If you read descriptions of vegetable varieties in seed catalogs, you've seen the number of days to maturity. Anyone who grows vegetables on any scale realizes that those are just relative numbers, to give you an idea which of the varieties may produce earlier. In our climate, we often get production of most crops sooner than the number of days listed-our crops of fall tomatoes have produced as much as 15 days early.
But, these darn tomatoes are using every single day listed on their descriptions-and a few extras! 'Amelia' is supposed to take 75 days, and 'Skyway' 78 days. They've been in the field for 80 days now. (I noticed that last year in my April 4 newsletter I was complaining about waiting for a new crop of 'Amelia' tomatoes.) So I've lowered my standards for this week: at this point I'm hoping to get at least 1 ripening tomato for every box. They may be as much as 5-6 days away from being fully ripe. But at least there are some nice cherry tomatoes from the new crop.
After this week, we're going to mow the large curly kales. I'm tired of fighting a losing battle against the whiteflies and diamond back moths on them. Last spring we had them for a month longer than this-shows the difference in the seasons. Don't despair, though, kale fans! We just planted a new crop of Tuscan kale and will also continue to grow the baby red kale and baby Tuscan. The baby greens are almost always easier to grow than their big counterparts-we just don't have them as long so there isn't as much time for problems to start. Although, as you know, if it rains a lot, they often get leaf spot diseases, and there are those pretty little white butterflies who like to lay their eggs on all the kale so their babies can start eating our greens as soon as they "hatch".
There are bell peppers from an old crop and then from a new one, when the old ones run out. And we'll be able to pick from the new cucumber plants-it's a pickling type, but they are good on salads, too. Also there are a few of the tiny "cucamelons" (Mexican gherkins), although not enough for everyone this week because, as usual, we're waiting for new plants to produce.
What's in your box this week: Salanova lettuce mix, probably with nasturtium flowers green onions tomatoes?? cherry tomatoes broccoli peppers eggplants summer squashes few cucamelons (large boxes only) arugula (large boxes only)
A little housekeeping: Some important notes from Donna: If you owe us anything in April, you should have received your statement. (If not, look in your junk mail folder, or e-mail Donna at email@example.com) Please check the balance due on your statements!! Make sure you include payment for your extras or any outstanding balances. There are some subscribers who also have accumulated a number of credits and owe much less than they realize. Payments are due April 1.
Snowbirds – let us know the date of your last box as soon as possible. And, if you are leaving in April, don't pay for the boxes you aren't going to receive. When you let Donna know when you want to stop, she can figure out your final bill (unless you are still going to get some extras this month.)
EXTRAS: The best way to order extras is to email Donna at firstname.lastname@example.org 2 PM the day before you get your box. If you are ordering later than that, please call 561-638-2755 and leave the message on the machine, since we don't always have time to check email in the mornings. (Those ordering for Monday boxes should call and leave a message, since you don't receive this list in time to order by email.)
Cut flowers require earlier orders since we don't keep a supply of them here. We order just the number of bouquets that we need from the other farms.
Locally grown Flowers (for Monday and Tuesday boxes, order by noon on the Friday before your box; for Thursday and Friday, order by noon on Wednesday). For information about these flower growers and some pictures of their flowers, check the Subscriber Business Links on our Subscriber section
Seed to Bloom, Loxahatchee: colorful mixed bouquets-whatever is in season. $9.50 plus tax
Caribbean Exotics, Delray Beach: long- stemmed Heliconia-large, impressive "ginger" flowers $20 plus tax (most stems are about 3' tall)
McCoy's Honey-raw, unfiltered, locally produced http://www.mccoysfloridahoney.com/ 1 lb. glass jar $5.00 each palmetto only (When these are gone, we will no longer be carrying 1 lb. jars.) 3 lb. plastic jug $14.00 each (orange blossom only-may have others by Friday) 1 gal. $53 (orange blossom or palmetto) 8 oz. bee pollen $12
LeDuc "Flavor Pict" Honey (most from his Loxahatchee hives, although some are on our farm) Honey 1 qt. glass jars $17 (new crop) Honey with comb 1 pt. glass jars $17
Herbs (some are from our farm, some from Pontano Farms) $3/bunch basil chives cilantro dill lemon balm (It's like a lemon mint) mint (This generic mint is actually spearmint.) specialty mints: chocolate mint, apple mint, peppermint, orange mint oregano parsley rosemary sage tarragon (True French tarragon is almost impossible to grow here. This is Mexican mint marigold, which is used for tarragon in the south and west. Flowers are almost done for this season.) thyme
Lemongrass $3 for 1/2 lb. (about 5 stalks)
'Baby' Greens $3.00/bag (8 oz. bag) Baby kale: 'Red Russian' Arugula 'Elegance' mustard greens mix-slightly spicy mixed mustards with some broccoli raab leaves Microgreens, sandwich bag (mix may contain radishes, arugula, red kale, and/or mustard greens) Salanova salad mix
Larger greens $3/bag (large bunch or head) Escarole, large head (only a few left) Swiss chard- red, white, or mixed Curly kale- green, red, or mixed (last week) Collard greens MAY HAVE SOME: Tuscan kale (also called Lacinato or alligator kale)
From Yagnapurush Farm, Loxahatchee: (may not be available) 'Namwah' bananas -$1.60/lb. or 3 lbs for $4 short and slightly chubby Squashes Seminole pumpkins (new crop) $1.50/lb. and/or a few small butternut squashes Yellow squash or zucchini $2/lb.
Tomatoes Green tomatoes $2/lb.
Other Vegetables and fruits from our farm Brussels sprouts (on the stalk) $1/lb. Watermelon radishes $3.00/lb. -large radishes, pink inside . Green beans $3/lb. Fennel $3/lb. (last week or two, but no leaves) Nasturtiums box of 10 flowers and 10 leaves $3 mixed color flowers, slightly spicy flavor; flowers and leaves can be tossed into fresh salads, and there are recipes for stuffing the flowers (probably about 2 more weeks) Pansies box of 10 bright colored flowers, $3 (last week) Hot peppers: 4peppers for $2 Only yellow 'Datil' peppers right now Papayas $1/lb. (green or turning yellow)