Provider Farm

From our fields, for your family


October 16, 2016

Share renewals are now due. If you haven't gotten yours in, just bring it next time you pick up your share or drop it in the mail. If you are still hoping to get a winter share, we still have some available.

We will continue to have our 100% grassfed steaks, roasts, shanks and short ribs on sale for $1/lb while supplies last!

This Week's Share

The frost finally did in the peppers and eggplants. What a great year we had with them so its not too sad to see them go. The frost kisses the fall crops with sweetness and will make the fall greens even better. If that is even possible, the greens are magnificent at this time of year.  We have one last planting of Bok choi ready to go this week. We love this stuff in a stir fry, our go to meal when we have no time to cook. It takes about 15 minutes to whip one up, way faster then going to pick up take out. It can really take self discipline sometimes at the end of the day to cook a meal, but we're always happy when we do.

The cauliflower continues to drag its feet. We found a couple beautiful heads in there last week, so hopefully its gearing up to explode. The Brussels sprouts are also right on the cusp of ready. We're hoping they will be coming in soon. They have also been hit hard by the drought but we'll definitely get a crop out of them.

Last week we thought we would have gold ball turnips but we actually harvested purple top turnips with their greens instead. Try sauteeing up the roots and greens together with a little garlic if you still have them with a little splash of vinegar. This week we will have gold balls, cook them in up in this week's root roast recipe. Yum! And add some leaks to the root roast too, you won't be disappointed.

Recipe of the Week: 

Roasted Roots

  • Olive oil
  • As many different roots as you want cubed (Beets, carrots, parsnips, turnips, rutabagas, potatoes, sweet potatoes, celeriac, onions, whole garlic cloves)
  • salt
  • pepper
  • herbs of your choice

Clean your roots and chop them up into small cubes. Put them on a baking pan and poor oil over them and mix until coated. Add dry herbs if you like (rosemary and thyme are good ones). Place in the oven at 400 and roast for about 30 minutes or until tender, stirring once in a while. Remove from oven and sprinkle with pepper and salt


The wind beneath our wings

Getting read for the frost incudes tucking the greens in under a blanket of row cover.
Getting read for the frost includes tucking the greens in undera blanket of row cover.

Dear Friends,

The leaves are changing and the light is golden. The morning is dark and chilly. We awoke to the first forlorn feeling of the first frost last Tuesday. Things are changing as we turn the corner. All in all it’s actually been pretty warm. So much so that in a lot of way it doesn’t really feel like the middle of October. Maybe it’s just the change in having our little boy home with us, but this fall feels different than years past. Usually at this time of year we tend to have a feeling of finality. There is less than a month of CSA distribution left and we are nearing the end of the growing season. The fall is typically a time of introspection on the farm, however this year I feel far more focused on the day to day happening of the farm. Maybe I just have less time and mental energy available to reflect back on the growing season. Maybe I’m not quite ready to delve back into a year that was far more challenging than any other we’ve experienced. The lack of rain made this a difficult season for farmers across the region. All throughout New England farmers tackled a year’s worth of drought conditions. To say I am happy to put this season to bed would be an understatement.

The theme for this week was a direct continuation of last week. We spent Monday afternoon preparing the farm for the coming frost, but aside from that the focus this week was all about getting crops out of the ground. The more we have safely squirreled away the more we can start to breathe a little easier. This week we completed the beets and all but finished carrots, two major storage crops for us. Carrots are probably my favorite overall crop to grow. There is just something so magical about nice carrots. They’re so sweet, crunchy and delicious. In the early fall morning they come out of the ground practically glowing, their orange color stands out brilliantly against the green and brown of the field.   We had some stellar spring carrots and some awful summer carrots, so getting a nice crop this fall has really lifted our collective spirits.

They’re the one winter root we can really snack on. Potatoes are probably the most versatile, but I’ve never grabbed a handful of potatoes to crunch on as I go about my day. Beets are certainly the most colorful, all of our cutting boards bare at least some red stains. But we’ve never filled a tupperware with beet sticks to enjoy throughout the week. Kids love carrot, the horse loves carrots, our crew loves carrots, and I love carrots. They really are the wind beneath our wings for the winter share. Our cooler certainly looks a lot better with a couple of 8 foot high stacks of carrots bags safely squirreled away in the corner.

There is a definite rhythm to this time of year. First comes harvest, than comes the harrow, than the cover crop seed, than the harrow again. As we approach November our window for seeding and establishing cover crop gets narrower. At this time of year every day makes a difference in getting a good stand of rye. Getting the cover crop in is the final step of the season for most of our fields. It is the punctuation on the end of the sentence. As the days grow shorter we find ourselves in a mad dash to get everything out of the field and than get as much ground covered in rye as possible before the temperatures and day light make it inhospitable for the rye.

With a few good weeks still ahead of us, it looks like it’s going to take some work but we should have no problem getting everything wrapped up and squared away.

Hannah, Holly, Chris, Erica and Larry

Your Farmers,

Max and Kerry

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