CSA Week Two!
Crop Talk: June 9, 2014
The Newsletter of Great Country Farms
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U-Pick, U-Play, U-Grow
Word From Your Farmer
Week two! We hope everyone savored the first delicacies of the season, and we're glad to see the important question "Who's your Farmer?" attached to so many vehicles in Northern Virginia. Look for more asparagus, onions, and strawberries this week, plus lettuce and Swiss chard. 
Swiss Chard on Martha Stewart.com
In the world of hearty greens, Swiss chard often gets the short end of the stick to it's more famous cousin kale, but it's a superstar in its own right. This relative of the beet is a superb source of vitamins A, C, and K, as well as magnesium, potassium, and iron.   
How to Store: After a mild rinse, store chard in moistened paper towels in a plastic bag (with a few pinholes to allow air to circulate) in the refrigerator for two or three days.


Here is a link to 23 Swiss Chard Recipes from Martha Steward.  There is something here for every pallet.  Enjoy!

Tips for Delivery Members
A couple of delivery suggestions:
Fragile produce like lettuce starts to wilt quickly if it's left in the sun, so if you won't be home when your delivery arrives, be sure to leave out a cooler big enough to accommodate our boxes, which measure 10 by 12 by 19 inches. Information on an inexpensive cooler bag is available further down the page.
Remember that deliveries may not arrive until as late as 6:00 p.m.  We will be posting on
and Twitter  @thefarmersays when deliveries are completed each day. So be sure to follow us and feel free to contact the farm office if you have not received a delivery after those posts go out.  Our office hours are Monday-Friday 9am-5pm.
Please leave your empty box next to your cooler or by your delivery door so we can bring it back to the farm and refill it.
Tips for Pick up Members
If you're picking up your share at the farm, please remember to sign for your box and to mark the return column, indicating that you've brought your empty box back. Produce will be available in the store for you-pack members between 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. Remember that you-pack members may omit certain items if they wish, but not replace them with different items. 
If you are running late for pick up and need us to set out your prepacked box, just call the farm office before 5pm and we will set your box out for you to pick up after 6pm. 
Farm News
Upcoming Events
In The Farm Market June 9-13
Asparagus $2.99/lb
Tomatoes $1.99/lb

CSA Bonus
June 9-16
The weather's been hard on our strawberry fields this spring and tart cherries are still a week or two away from being ready with the cool spring.   Unfortunately, we're not able to offer a bonus this week. We'll update you on the status of our cherries and black raspberries next week.
CSA Bonus Ticker
Guests have asked us over the years to help quantify the u-pick value in our CSA shares.  Last year we did a u-pick value ticker so members could track their bonus value.  Last year's ticker wrapped up just over $165.00 in market value.  We hope you are able to make it out at least once a month to enjoy a picnic at the farm, chat with your farmers, and do a little bonus picking to add value to your CSA share.

CSA Bonus Ticker: 

Week 6/9: $0.00
Year to Date: $2.00
Keep Your Share Cool

Our thanks to group site host Rich Voigt for his steadfast pursuit of the best delivery-day cooling options for the new share boxes. This collapsable insulated tote has plenty of room for your box and a reusable cooling device such as the ice mat on top of the cooler in this photo. Both the tote and the mat are available from the Webstaurant Store for the low prices of $13.99 and $3.99, respectively. Note that prices drop if you buy in bulk. If you're looking for a different cooling solution, remember that our boxes measure 10 inches by 12 inches by 19 inches.

If you won't be home when your box arrives, please be sure to provide some method for protecting the produce against the heat of the day. 

Solar Power Comes to GCF
On June 16, Independent Solar Solutions will begin installing 52 solar panels on the roof of the farm store and 36 panels on the roof of the Zurschmeide's house. The panels will produce 70 percent of the electricity consumed by the store's lights, air conditioners, heaters, and walk-in coolers. They will also install a video monitoring station inside the store, so visitors can see how much power the panels have generated in any given week or day.

Technicians from ISS work on a solar installation. 
Independent Solar Solutions aspires to add five megawatts of solar power to the local grid within the next three years. They're based in Bluemont -- check out their renovations to the old Bluemont Post Office the next time you come to the farm. And while you're here to pick your bonus next week, take a few minutes to chat with Niko or Josh about the project they've designed for us. We're eager to start harvesting the sun in a new form. 

More information on this project -- and the solar future -- is available on Barn Talk, our new farm blog.


Fathers' Day Fish-A-Rama with Bryan Kelly

We are thrilled to welcome  Bryan Kelly,  a 1994 BASS Master Qualifier, to the farm for a spin tackle and fly casting demonstration at this year's Fish-A-Rama.  Bryan is the CEO of the Angler's Inn in Harpers Ferry, and a veteran of 18 years as a Potomac River fishing guide. He has been featured on The Outdoor Channel on Curtis Flemings Fly Rod Chronicles.   Come and spend some time with this accomplished author, artist, and fly designer, and hone your fishing craft. Bryan will be at the farm on June 15. 


Be sure to like our facebook and follow us on  Twitter  @TheFarmerSay and @ElmerThePig for the lastest news of the farm.  We appreciate it when you share our link on your page showing your friends how you support local. It helps keep our CSA running strong.

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