Provider Farm

From our fields, for your family


September 26, 2020

Fast fact: The last pick ups of summer share for Salem are Nov. 10 and Nov. 13. The last pick up for the Coogan Farm share is Nov. 7.

This Week's Share

The link to the NEW sign up form for September is here.

You must sign up for new slots for the month. Sign ups from last month will not carry over.

Please select one slot per week. If you sign up for this week, it will not carry over to the following weeks.

This is only for shareholders picking out the share. Do not sign up for a slot if you are picking up a box.

Well never mind what we said about the frost, by Monday the peppers, eggplants and basil were frozen, wilty and brown. Sadly, that brings to an end our summer crops.

Fortunately, there are plenty of wonderful fall crops coming in still. We have an especially beautiful crop of spinach this year. This crop is notoriously finicky so we are lucky to have such an abundant emerald yield this year.

New in the share this week are Delicata winter squash and jester winter squash. These are yellow with green stripes and really tasty baked in the oven. The Jesters are acorn squash shaped. Bake them in the oven, they are sweet and tasty and don't really need much else. The delicata skin is tender, don't bother with peeling it, just eat it! It actually adds a really nice textural element to the squash.

As i expected, the cauliflower is piddling in here and there. We have two nice plantings to come and hopefully they will respond exuberantly to some water and come in with force.

Recipe of the Week: 

Greens pie

  • One 9-inch deep dish pie crust
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 medium onion (thinly sliced into half moons)
  • 1 pound greens (spinach, kale, swiss chard in any combination) (chopped, stems and leaves)
  • 4 large eggs (whisked)
  • 1/2 cup good Gruyère cheese, or feta
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 350ºF.
In a large pan over high heat, add olive oil, garlic, and onions. Cook for 3-4 minutes, until onions have soften and are translucent.
Add greens, stir and cook for 5 minutes, until tender. Turn the heat off, transfer to a plate and let the vegetables cool to room temperature. You can speed up the process by putting them in the freezer for 5-7 minutes (make sure you use a timer so you don’t forget them!)
In a large mixing bowl, add eggs, cheese, salt and pepper. Mix well.
Add cooked vegetables and mix well.
Pour mixture into a pie crust that has been warmed into oven for 10 minutes and bake in the oven for 40-50 minutes until well set.

pickled with edits by Kerry

Frost is frost

Loading sweet potatoes onto trailor.
The shadows are long as the crew loads sweet potatoes into the evening.

Dear friends, 


Last week I wrote about how we had narrowly and fortunately avoided an ill timed early frost. Well, it looks like I spoke too soon and we awoke to frost covered ground both Monday and Tuesday. This was certainly the earliest frost we have had in our 8 years here in Salem and probably the earliest I can remember since I started farming in 2007.


Frost is frost, except it’s not. A light frost will kill the very sensitive heat loving crops while a harder frost can do a lot of damage. Especially if it’s been warm and we get a deep freeze before the crops know to get ready for the cold. Fortunately, the frost we got was thorough but fairly light. Thats it for the peppers and summer squash but they were on their way out any way. The lettuce, kale, broccoli and just about everything else seemed to do alright.


One major exception was the sweet potatoes. Monday morning, with a beautiful frost glistening on our fall broccoli, we discovered an entire field of black, dead sweet potato vines. The tubers were undamaged but without the living vines it was time to get them out. In fact, looking at the withering vines it felt like it was past time. 


This was our plan for the week any way but with the vines dead we kicked it into over drive.  Row after row we got to work. Filing crate after crate we started to make a dent in the field. First just a small dent and then half the field was done. Before we knew it, we were finishing the last row mid Wednesday morning. Not too shabby if I do say so myself. A great big thank you to the crew who again stepped it up in yet another weather based emergency, hustling and staying late to get the sweets in.


Elsewhere on the farm we have been dealing with the effects of a pretty much constant drought. We have all our irrigation going full blast pretty much around the clock. We often have to water a bit into September and it never feels quite right to be watering into the fall, but definitely never to this extent and certainly not this late. No one likes irrigating and "irrigation irritation" is a chronic ailment of farmers. The one benefit of the drought is Kerry is coming up with time saving new ways to water multiple fields all at once off one pump.


Hopefully it will rain soon. But not too much and just when we want.


Your farmers,

Alissa, Bonnie, Erica, Hannah, Kerry, Larry, Marycia, Max and Meredith

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