Maybe the most important piece of news is that we're finally able to offer CSA shares in Ballston Spa! Click here to learn more, or click below to download the sign-up form!
Years passed and our lives changed so we were on the other side of the CSA equation, working for CSA farms and being the providers instead of the consumers. Lo and behold, we found that all those wonderful benefits have their match on the farm side: With the CSA members on our side, we were able to focus on growing really amazing, high-quality food and were able to get it to people at its very peak of freshness. However worn down we felt mid-summer, there was the highlight of CSA distribution to get a boost from our excited CSA members... and as much as our shareholders want and need to connect to the ground and to their farm, we as farmers need the chance to sink some social roots and be a part of the broader community we live in and support. It's an amazing, wonderful win-win situation. So we're really, really excited to have a wonderful distribution point, a great community, and a beautiful piece of ground that we can all share in.
In other news, all of our spring seeds are showing up! Bright yellow sunshine melons, crisp fresh french breakfast radishes, those perfect salad pingpong tomatoes... We really love good food, so we fill the field with the varieties we know are the juiciest, snappiest varieties out there... but we also can't help from trying some new stuff, too. This year we're trying a new kind of yellow cherry tomato, an updated version of the Brandywine slicer (my personal favorite, but an inconsistent performer), a new strain of broccoli, a "rainbow" kale, and a bunch of other stuff! We try to not gamble on too much acreage, because we refuse to sell something we're not impressed with ourselves... but sometimes you just hit gold with a new variety, and it trying new things is part of the thrill.
All these seeds coming in keeps us in a spring-like state of mind, which is great... but it makes it a little more stressful when things go wrong. My ongoing battle to keep everything running took a step backwards the other day when two studs under the van snapped off. They snapped while I was trying to replace the shocks, which I was replacing because one of them had actually rusted through, leaving a messy puddle in the barn for me to clean up. Now that the stud's broken, we have to remove two big parts of the suspension and replace them, too... but of course their bolts are rusted solid where they bolt to an even larger, more expensive part. All this was after replacing a bunch of power steering lines that had ruptured. Fortunately, we have Baby, our wonderful 86 F250 to rely on while the van's down... at least we did until this afternoon, when it developed an intermittent electrical issue that caused the truck to absolutely die with no signs of life. Of course, this happened while I was running errands off the farm and Cara is out-of-state visiting relatives! A couple hours of embarrassed wrenching in a Hannaford parking lot jiggled whatever the intermittent item is into compliance, thankfully, and I got home, off-schedule but without a tow. But I have only the vaguest hunch what the issue is (fusible link in the ignition switch circuit?) and no time or plan to fix it until it misbehaves again... Makes me nervous about driving that truck to an equipment auction in south Jersey next weekend, though!
That's the news from Quincy Farm. I really promise to update our blog more often, because I know all of you are interested in how things are going. Even though spring is sneaking up quickly, things are looking pretty good in the field--the lack of snow actually means the ground has frozen harder than in a snowy winter, which is good for killing off the bad bugs... and obviously the lack of snow means the river ought to behave itself, and the fields themselves will have a lot less work to do to get warm and dry enough to plant. It makes us a little nervous to not have had winter--what if it snows in July?!--but for now we'll take it with a positive spin and believe it's just the good beginning of a really great season!
Luke & Cara