Farm News, June 10/2019

Hello everyone!  Veggie season has begun!

This week we will have the following veggies for CSA:

lettuce, spinach, radish, turnip, pea shoots, bok choi, brocolette, arugula, mizuna, mixed mustard greens, leaf chinese cabbage, and green onions.  Sadly we will only have asparagus for the full shares.  The last couple years we’ve added the asparagus from Plum ridge farm to our CSA box for the first pick up, but I was just informed that the asparagus has not been producing nearly as much with this cooler spring and he does not have enough for us.  So, for half shares we will substitute by adding an extra item – i.e – instead of choosing between something you will get both.

The mustard mix  is the spiciest and most colourful one .  The bunched loose leaf chinese cabbage( tokyo bekana)  is a lighter sweet flavour and makes a good substitute for lettuce.    The mizuna is always popular and not very spicy with a nutty flavor and has the serrated edges.  They’re all great eaten raw in salad or mixed together and lightly sauteed or braised.


On the farm this week:

This year back on the farm I’m so happy that we have Sarah and Irina again!  I think this is year 7 for Sarah and year 4 for Irina.   You will see Irina every other week at the CSA pick up again and you’ll see Sarah in pictures of rain gear and long gloves washing veggies.

New this year is Danielle who’ll be working on the farm Mon, Wed, Friday and at the Wolseley market every Tuesday and Thursday so you can say hi to her then!  Danielle loves farmers markets and sells her soaps and all kinds of other things at the Lac du bonnet farmers market and Beausejour farmers market on the weekend.   I’m hoping she will teach me how she has such a busy schedule and is still always smiling.

And finally we have Nick, Irina’s son helping out for a while.  He’s a pro at pounding stakes into the ground and put in all the stakes for our pea trellis last week.


The first thing I like to do each year is complain about the weather. It has been a cold spring this year with a lot of cool nights.   We even had a couple frosts in June which is a first for me!  Now I know why the smart farmers always wait to plant things.   The first surprise late  frost we had we spent a day covering plants.  The weather looked good after that and so I thought we should uncover everything.  Sarah said “are you sure you don’t want to wait and see if there’s more frost?”  And I said “what are the odds of that happening, let’s uncover it “.  And sure enough the next week we had a frost and spent a whole day putting up hoops and covering things back up again.  Oh well…

With the cool spring things have not been growing as fast this year as usual.    They’ve just been hanging out in the field waiting for some nice weather to grow.  But it looks like we’ve finally got some nice weather now and hopefully things will grow extra fast to make up for lost time!

That’s it for this week.   See you soon!

Jonathan, Sarah, Irina, Danielle and Nick

Farm news, Oct 22/2018

It’s our last CSA pick up and market of the year tomorrow!  Thanks everyone for eating our veggies all summer and we hope you liked them.

We’ll have the following veggies this week:  

lettuce, spinach, kale, broccoli, celeriac, cabbage, squash, carrots, potatos, beets, onions, cilantro and parsley

On the farm this week:

Well winter is finally over and now we have fall finally!  It’s been a nice change for the last couple weeks especially today picking spinach without gloves on!  Here’s Irina doing our last harvest of greens for this year!

After tomorrow when our CSA harvest  is finished it will be a race against winter to get the rest of the winter veggies harvested and washed.  Last week we finished harvesting the beets and so now all that we have left is carrots and potatoes to harvest and it’s going to be a marathon!  I’m really hoping it stays nice and dries out a bit more.  Harvesting, and especially washing goes so much faster when everything is not caked on with mud.  We dug some potatos today and they were still pretty wet :(.

And finally, we planted the garlic for next year and I learned my lesson and this time we covered it!  So, hopefully we have garlic again for next year.

And that’s it for this year!  We’ll see lots of you November 5th for the first winter CSA pick up.  Thanks everyone again and see you soon!

Jonathan, Sarah, Irina, Liam and Renee



Farm news, Oct 8/2018

Happy thanksgiving everyone!

This is the last regular week of CSA for most people.

We’ll have the following veggies this week:

lettuce, spinach, chard, kale, broccoli, peppers, brussels sprouts, cabbage, squash, potatoes, onions, carrots, beets, dill, cilantro, parsley and green tomatoes.  We only have green tomatoes this week, but they will ripen over the next few weeks and it’s the last pick up for most people so we’ll send you with some green tomatoes.

On the farm this week:

We had some really good times this week.  Especially Renee who’s new favourite thing is picking spinach in the snow!  I realized today looking back at the last month that it’s been raining and overcast for a full month now.  But since I’m not happy unless I can complain about the weather this has been my favourite month yet!

We decided to work this weekend and take Friday off because Friday was awful! And even though we didn’t work  outside I still complained about the weather all day.  And then there was a bunch of snow on the ground for Saturday which I also complained about.

The most interesting thing that happened was the farm was visited by a flock of pheasants this Sunday.  A couple miles down the road is a place called ‘igors pheasantry’ and I’ve always wondered what a pheasantry is.  Well, I guess they have pheasants, because on Sunday morning they had broken out of igors a and by the afternoon had found our garden.  This is the closest I could get to them to get a picture. I’ve never seen a pheasant before but they are really colourful.  And they don’t seem to eat too many vegetables so far.

Also this week my dad was a big help and came out to put the new plastic on the greenhouse and now the layers actually inflate which will help insulate it.  And Irina finished off cleaning all the muddy squash that we harvested in September and now we only have to move them all 2 more times! (into winter storage and then back out)

And finally this is the last CSA pick up for most of you.  This summer flew by for us – I can’t believe it’s just about over.   Thank you everyone for signing up and I really hope you enjoyed the veggies.  See you this week at the last pick up.  We’ve still got 2 more weeks after this week for those who signed up for the extra 2 weeks and winter CSA starts November 5!

See you at the last pick up!

Jonathan, Sarah, Irina, Renee, and Liam



Farm news, Oct 01/2018

We’ll have the following veggies this week:

lettuce, spinach, chard, kale, broccoli, tomatos, peppers, leeks, brussel sprouts, squash, cabbage, carrots, potatoes, onions, beets, dill, parsley, cilantro.

On the farm this week:

We’ll it’s been been absolutely beautiful weather for January,  except that it’s still September actually this weather stinks!  It feels like somehow we missed fall and are heading right into winter.

We’ve had frost on most mornings this week so we’ve picked the rest of the peppers and lots of  the field tomatoes which we’ll let ripen inside.   As you can see our pepper plants below have seen better days.   But now there are less things to harvest which is nice!

There’s still lots of things that withstand the frosts, including the broccoli  that Renee’s harvesting below.

And our green manure crops are doing well!   It’s pretty safe to say we won’t need to water again this year, so we’re gradually pulling out all the sprinklers and water lines out of the field. 

And the big news is we finally finished weeding the potatose! -we’ve been working at that since May!  They’ve still got some big thistles in them, but I’m hoping I can just mow those and digging the rest of the potatoes will go smoothly.

Well that’s it for this week,

See you soon,

Jonathan, Sarah, Irina, Renee, and Liam


Farm news, Sept 25 2018

We’ll have the following veggies this week:

lettuce, spinach, chard, kale, tomatoes, peppers, leeks, onions, potatoes, carrots, beets, celery, broccoli, brussel sprouts, winter squash, dill, cilantro, parsley, hot peppers.

On the farm this week:

This weather is nasty!  It’s been cold, wet and overcast for months now and there’s so much mud!  Everyone must have been feeling the same after last week because everyone showed up to work today with new jackets and rain gear and apparently there was a sale on camouflage clothing because everyone got camouflage rain gear.   The problem is I can never find anyone now.  If Sarah wasn’t wearing a purple jacket I wouldn’t have known she was there!

And you can see below if Irina wasn’t holding a yellow bin no one would be able to find her.  When I look out at the field I only see yellow bins float up and then float along and then drop back down every once in a while.

With the cold overcast weather I think a total of about 3 tomatos ripened this week, plus we got a couple frosts this week and so our summer veggies are almost finished, and that means it’s  time to harvest every kids favourite vegetable: Brussel sprouts!   It’s actually nice to get frosts now because it makes the flavour of the vegetables sweeter as the plants produce sugar to use as an antifreeze

We’re also starting to think about next year.  Liam spent a couple days digging a trench around the greenhouse we can insulate it better because it got cold in there this spring!  So I’m hoping to seal it up better before winter.  I’ve also been taking soil samples to get tested for nutrient levels and planning ahead for next year with the different growing areas and figuring out how much compost I need and realizing I better finish that road after all if I’m going to get compost out to the field if it stays this wet!

Well that’s it for this week,

See you soon,

Jonathan, Sarah, Irina, Renee and Liam

Farm news, Sept 17/2018

We’ll have the following veggies this week:

lettuce, spinach, chard, kale, onions, potatos, carrots, beets, broccoli, squash, leeks, tomatos, bell peppers, eggplant, dill, cilantro, parsley, basil and hot peppers.

So we’ll have broccoli as a choice this week and just to warn people there will likely be some worms.  They wash out pretty easily once you cut open the broccoli if you’re ok with that.  By next week I think they’ll be much better as the cabbage moths are pretty much gone now for this year.

On the farm this week:

Well, I’m pretty sure we’re not going to have to water again this year, so that’s a plus.  On the down side we got almost 3″ of rain on Thursday, so getting the truck out to the field is always an adventure.  In the spring I meant to get some more gravel, but then it was so dry I thought maybe I didn’t need to.  Now I’m thinking I need to.  But maybe it will dry up again and I’ll start thinking I don’t need to again.

It’s officially soup season now; so we’re bringing out the leeks this week.   Just looking at Sarah harvesting leeks this morning made me want to get into bed with some warm leek and potato soup.

We’ve also harvested all the squash now and most of them are curing in the greenhouse.  Just looking at this makes me want to eat some squash soup   – or a pie!  The squash is the one thing we didn’t water this year, and yet it seemed to do better than everything else…hmmm… so if plants don’t get water they grow better.  This is good to know for next year!

For squashes we have: acorn, butternut, spaghetti, blue hubbard, red kuri, red kobocha, buttercup, sweet dumpling and pie pumpkins and some regular pumpkins coming later. Here’s the quick down low on the less familiar squashes.

Blue hubbard – the only blue one we have.  Sweet flesh  bright orange fiberless flesh.  Skin is tender compared to other hubbards making it easier to cut.  It’s good for soups and pies.

Red Kuri –  An oragne hubbard squash.  It’s teardrop shape will help distinguish it from the  red kobacha which is flat and round.   It’s good for pies and purees bc it’s specks of skin will not show.

Red Kobacha:  Tender flesh is smooth, sweet and bright orange for baking, mashing and pies.  They’re flat and round

Buttercup:  Have deep orange fiberless flesh with a rich sweet flavor.

Sweet dumpling:  It has the ivory color and dark green stripes of delicata, but in a round flat topped shape.  Very sweet, tender orange flesh and good for stuffing.

Our cover crops are also taking off now.  You can see some oats and peas in the background and behind Sarah in the leeks above.  We also planted a big field of clover this year and I tried planting clover in some of the pathways this year and it worked out really well.  All those white spots on the clover roots that I’m holding up are beneficial bacteria that are working hard converting atmospheric nitrogen into plant food!

With all the rain the last couple weeks all of our final plantings have exploded and everything is looking super green which we’re happy about.


And finally, it’s the 15th week of CSA this week.   So for some of you it’s the last week.  I’ll be emailing everyone a reminder of what duration they signed up for, but thank you so much for taking part and I hope you enjoyed the veggies this summer and I hope to see you all this week.

See you soon,

Jonathan, Sarah, Irina, Renee and Liam



Farm News, Sept 10/2018

We’ll have the following veggies this week:

lettuce, spinach, chard, kale, celery, tomatos, bell peppers, eggplant, cucumber, zucchini, carrots, beets, onions, potatos, cabbage/melon/squash, basil, dill, cilantro, parsley, hot peppers.  The celery is not super tender for eating raw has lots of flavour and is good chopped up or in cooking.

On the farm this week:

We almost had frost on Tuesday morning!  There was a tiny bit of frost but no damage was done.  And then Wednesday when there was supposed to be frost we prevented the frost from happening by covering things up, because it’s a rule of nature you never actually get frost if you cover things.  So for everyone who didn’t cover their cucumbers this week you’re welcome.  So now we’re going to uncover everything and I’m not falling for that one again –  next time there supposed to frost we’re not covering things up.

But apart from a couple cold mornings, we couldn’t ask for nicer weather.  We’ve been getting rain every weekend for the last 3 weeks now, and only on our days off and this morning during the harvest the weather was perfect for picking greens!  Here is  our last planting of greens that is now almost all ready for picking!


Friday was major onion cleaning marathon and people were crying and sweating in the greenhouse.  Sarah who’s always wet and cold loved a day of being dry and hot. Either way, it’s  a great place to be if you like the smell of onions.  We’re almost done cleaning and bagging the winter onions now, and  once we’ve got the onions out of the greenhouse we’ll start harvesting all the squash and moving them in so they can cure.

That’s it for this week,

See you soon!

Jonathan, Sarah, Irina, Renee, Liam