Welcome to the Wolfe's Neck Farm Teen Ag and CSA share newsletter, written by Teen Ag Crew member Maya Bradbury. This weekly newsletter provides information about the produce you can look forward to receiving in your CSA share, a recipe or two, and any bits of information we think you might find interesting.

Thank you so much for your support of this program. Enjoy! 
CSA Pickup Day Details
Tomorrow is CSA pickup day! You will be receiving a basket with your CSA share in it each week. It is important to return your basket at each weekly pickup so we can prepare for the next week.

CSA pickups will occur weekly on  Thursdays from 2:00-5:30 PM . If you are unable to come during this time, please let us know and we will make it accessible in the refrigerator at the  Farm Stand.

If you need to pick up early on a CSA day, please contact Richard at teenag@wolfesneckfarm.org at least 24 hours in advance.
This Week's Basket
The produce in this week's basket includes:

  • Turnips
  • Carrots
  • Swiss Chard
  • Dried Oregano
  • Garlic Scapes
  • Strawberries
Recipe of the Week: Sautéed Turnip and Swiss Chard
Ingredients:
Turnips and Swiss Chard
  • 2 Tbsp. Olive Oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 3 Turnips
  • 3 cups chopped Swiss Chard
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • A squeeze of lemon juice (optional)


Method:
  • Heat a large skillet on medium-high heat
  • Add olive oil and minced garlic
  • Peel and slice turnip into small pieces, and roughly chop swiss chard
  • Add turnips to the pan and cook until tender
  • Add chopped swiss chard to the pan and cook until wilted
  • Season with Salt and Pepper and squeeze of lemon juice
A Few Ideas for Garlic Scapes

We've been including garlic scapes in your baskets for the past couple of weeks. Looking for new ways to use them in your cooking? Here are some ideas:


  • Cook them in a stir fry with other vegetables
  • Puree them and add to Gazpacho or another soup
  • Add as a topping to pizza
  • Substitute them for garlic in homemade hummus 
  • Use them as seasoning when roasting chicken or another meat

What's Happening in the Field
As June turns to July, the field is popping! Conditions are warm and dry, which is perfect for the strawberries that are exploding all over the field. The dry conditions also mean that many plants need a little extra watering help. With over five acres of field, it would be impossible for us to hand water everything that needs it. Luckily though, we have an irrigation system that does the heavy lifting for us. 
We line the rows with drip tape, a long hoselike plastic tube that has little holes in it. This consistently waters every plant, and we can control it at the top of each row, where there is a drip head emitter with a little switch on it. Without this irrigation system, we would not be able to grow all that we can. Sadly, the crops weren't the only things growing this week. After a long weekend off for the fourth of July, parts of the field became a jungle. We may take a holiday off, but the weeds sure don't, so we jumped right into cultivation as soon as we got back.


Talk by Tori Lee Jackson
Last Friday, Tori Lee Jackson, an Educator for the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, came to talk to the teens about enterprise budgeting. She spoke about the different aspects that go into starting a farm business, and how challenging it can be. From testing the soil before buying land to making sure to account for paying yourself in the budget, Tori explained many unplanned costs for new farmers. 
Her job is to educate young farmers about the challenges of farming before they begin so that they have the best possible chance to succeed. Focusing on this summer, she also talked with us about our own enterprise budgeting as part of the Teen Ag Crew. An enterprise budget keeps track of all money spent on a certain crop, and measures all profit from that crop. This summer each teen will keep an enterprise budget of their own for a specific crop in the field. Tori explained how important this is to do so that farmers know if they are making or losing money on a particular crop. She also helped us brainstorm some of the hidden costs, such as the price of gas for the tractor, or the labor time needed to weed the crop. With her help and instruction, each teen will have a completed enterprise budget of their own by the end of the summer, which they will use to measure the profit of the crops and how worthwhile it is to grow it.
Tom Talk: Crop Planning & Farm Budgeting
By Tom Prohl, Production Educator

Crop planning and budgeting are two of the most challenging parts of running a farm enterprise. This is especially true when running a Community Supported Agriculture program in which a basket of food is provided to a group of prepaid customers.

There is no excuse for having an off week where all you have to offer your customers is a few tomatoes and a head of lettuce. Customers expect a variety of different crops week in and week out. This takes planning! The off season is when we break out the old trusty easel and start mapping out the season month by month. A strict calendar is created and followed, mapping when seeds are started in the seed house, field, and when transplants moved from greenhouse to field.


Furthermore, successions are planned accordingly so there is always a steady supply of crops with quick turnover like salad mix and lettuce. Long term planning is important as well; every season we plant another 500-1000 strawberry plants so that we have productive fruiting crops every year, instead of having 2 great years and then having to replant and wait for young plants to establish themselves.


Budgeting on a farm is unlike most other businesses. You spend lots of money on the front end of the season and don’t see much return until late summer when sales of high value crops like tomatoes and flowers start pouring in. Meanwhile, the goods in the farm stand have a limited shelf life, and need to be sold as soon as possible. In the mean time you spend money on labor every day to keep everything growing.  

This year each crew member is going to select a crop and create an enterprise budget.  Throughout the season they will keep track of all labor, materials, and financial return to see if were making money on the crop.  Planning crop successions, budgeting and hoping the weather cooperates often feels like running a marathon to a farmer, working hard and sprinting all summer long in hopes of a successful and fruitful year. Lets hope this year is another success!
New Equipment at the Teen Ag Field
Each week the Teen Ag crew prepares many many pounds of food for the CSA, the farmstand, wholesaling to farm events, the Farm Cafe, and for food pantries. All of this produce needs to be washed and packaged before we can sell it.

On a mission last Friday, Richard and Tom traveled to a restaurant supply store where they got new produce washing equipment! A new stainless steel table and three-basin sink now reside at the plot and make the washing process more sanitary, faster, and safer. 

Now that the table is at a proper height, teens won't need to bend down to wash and package produce. The smooth surfaces are much easier to spray down, and make washing more efficient. This will be a great addition to our year round wash station, made possible by Harvard Pilgrim Health Care's Healthy Food Fund.
Wolfe's Neck Farm is a 501(c)(3) Nonprofit Organization
(207) 865-4469  |  wolfesneckfarm.org