For the 2017 season, all pickups will be at the farm. Members can choose to pick up either Tuesdays from 3-7pm or Saturdays from 9-noon.
No. In a nutshell, the reason we don’t plan to pursue organic certification is that we don’t believe that certified organic goes far enough. We believe in being the best stewards of our farmland as possible. Good land and soil stewardship can produce superior food while going above and beyond what certified organic standards require. For example, organic standards don’t address soil health. Tilling the soil disturbs microbial life that provides a healthy soil. Strong microbial life underground breaks down organic matter which makes the plants better able to absorb nutrients efficiently. Well-nourished plants produce nutrient-rich food. An organic label cannot tell you how well the farmer cared for the soil where the food was grown, so it isn’t always the best indicator of a superior product.
Most consumers don't realize that farms that are certified organic are allowed to use certain pesticides that target ALL insects, including beneficial ones. Rather than relying on these chemicals, we prefer to use physical barriers, crop rotations, and companion planting to discourage destructive pests and encourage their natural predators. Only if crop failure is imminent would we consider organic pesticides. So far, we haven't needed to use any at all.
In addition, organic certification requires extensive paperwork, burdensome fees, and time spent with inspectors that we would prefer to spend with you, our members. The organic label is designed for farmers who don’t get to interact with their end consumers. When you buy a certified organic item from a store shelf, you can be reasonably assured that it was produced according to a set of standards with which you are comfortable. You are paying someone else to monitor the farmer’s growing practices. In the CSA model, members have a close relationship with their farmer and can know how their food is grown first hand, making a certification unnecessary. We prefer it this way.
Don’t worry! Our goal is to have the display as full and fresh for the last person as it was for the first. The beauty of setting up at the farm is that we will easily be able to re-stock if things run low. Of course, there may be times when there are very limited quantities of items when they first start to ripen or at the very end of the season, but we will plan to stagger when we put those items out so that everyone has a good chance of accessing those rare items throughout the season.
If you choose to pay the membership fee in installments, you will pay 1/4 of the total due immediately upon sign up, 1/4 one month after sign up, 1/4 two months after sign up, and the final 1/4 three months after sign up. In other words, you’ll divide your total amount due by four to find the individual payment amounts.
If you pay by check, you will mail us four checks with four different dates. Three of the checks will be dated in the future and we will cash them on the appropriate date, with an email reminder as the date approaches.
If you pay with a credit card, you will pay 1/4 online immediately upon signup and then you will automatically be billed monthly for the following three months. An email reminder will be sent as the date approaches.
You might think of our CSA as a members-only farmer’s market. Instead of paying by the pound or per item, you pay for a subscription to a basket size. During the growing season, you visit the farm weekly during designated hours to fill our basket with your choice of the freshly harvested produce on display. In a traditional CSA, the farmer fills a box for you with an equal share of everything grown, giving you little or no choice in what you receive. At our farm, you get to choose what your share contains each week, right down to selecting which individual pepper looks best to you. (Or not, if you don’t like peppers.)
We grow fairly mainstream crops for the most part, but like to throw in a few fun new things to try on occasion. The chart below outlines the main crops we hope to deliver and when they may be available. The chart lists broad categories within which we plan to grow multiple varieties. For example, winter squash may include pie pumpkins, spaghetti squash, acorn squash, and butternut, among others. Herbs are not listed on the chart, but we do grow peppermint, thyme, dill, sage, oregano, basil, and cilantro and make these available at no extra charge to our members. This chart is based on our best estimate, but of course weather, pests, and other events will affect actual production.