News from the garden
First of all, I’m pretty excited to get this 5th season of CSA underway. A huge welcome to everyone who is joining us for the first time. I truly hope you enjoy the experience of eating with the seasons as you pick up your weekly or bi-weekly share of the harvest. Of course a big welcome back to our many many returning members. It makes me feel so good to see so many people back for another season. Your commitment and enthusiasm for this farm makes all the long hours in the field worth it.

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Bok Choy pre-harvest today.

The season so far has been up and down – cool, damp spring to sudden scorching dry heat, all topped off with a mega storm to kick off summer! By this 6th season as a market gardener, I’m becoming less and less shocked by the weather and instead, I tend to expect extreme weather and try to prepare. For example, we have a slick irrigation system to help deal with the dry conditions and use loads of sandbags to hold down our netting/row cover during high winds. The garden actually held well during the storm on Monday and in the end, the rain did us very good, crisping up the veggies for CSA Wednesday!

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Shop vac for the high tunnel.

One new challenge experienced so far this season is the Squash Beetle. We’ve never experienced an infestation, but this year they are a bit insane on our cucumbers – mainly attacking our trellised cukes and not the ones laying on the ground. We’ve tried hand picking but I’m upgrading to using the shop vac several times a day! Typical farmer applying some creative solutions….

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Gorgeously green first CSA share.

This week’s share of the harvest
1 bag mixed lettuces
1 bag pea shoots
1 large bok choy
1 flat microgreens
1 bunch radishes
1 bunch kale
Large Share Members also pick up: 1 extra bag lettuce, 1 extra bok choy

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Washing up the lettuce.

How to use your share
One of my biggest pieces of advice for spring crops is, use homemade dressings. I really recommend avoiding commercially produced Kraft-style dressing because I find they really overpower the greens and you can get a way better flavour very quickly using a homemade dressing. Homemade dressing and marinades are very easy and you likely have many good ingredients in your cupboard and fridge. I usually prepare my dressing in a) a mason jar and shake or b) assemble in the bottom of my salad bowl and whisk, before filling the bowl with my salad items. The veggie guide has some recipes at the back, but here are 3 more to try:

** You may want to add or reduce amounts of ingredients depending on your taste.

Miso Dressing – an asian flavoured dressing
1 tsp. miso paste
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. maple syrup or honey
1 Tbsp. rice vinegar
1 tsp. tamari sauce
1 Tbsp. sesame seeds

Maple Balsamic Dressing
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. + little more balsamic dressing (Check out the oil & vin store downtown)
1 tsp. + little more maple syrup
cracked pepper
salt

Yogurt-Tahini Dressing – good creamy dressing (make 1/2 cup)
1 Tbsp. tahini
1/8 cup boiling water
1/2 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup plain yogourt
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1/8 cup olive oil
salt & pepper

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