Beautiful Plums
Crop Talk: July 14, 2014 
The Newsletter of Great Country Farms
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U-Pick, U-Play, U-Grow
Week 7 CSA Shares include:







Green beans





You-pick bonus: purple plums


Plums are loaded with anti-oxidant phenols, which are especially effective in neutralizing free radicals. They're also delicious! Though they're usually eaten in their natural state right off the tree, you might try ideas like these as well:


--Make pizza with a twist by broiling sliced plums, goat cheese, walnuts and sage on top of a whole wheat pita bread or pizza crust.

--For a delightful dessert, poach plums in a red wine and serve with lemon zest.

--Bake pitted plum halves in a 200�F(93�C) oven until they are wrinkled. Then mix them into a rye bread recipe for a scrumptiously sweet and hardy bread.

--Blend stewed plums and combine with yogurt and honey for wonderful cold soup.


New green bean picker in action at Great Country Farms
New green bean picker in action at Great Country Farms


Our refurbished bean-picker is back in the fields this week, harvesting more beans in one hour than a hand-picking crew can harvest in five. The picker uses a rotating cylinder that separates bean pods from the vines and drops them on a conveyor, which sends then into a blower where leaves and stems are removed before the beans fall into a hopper. This streamlined picking process makes it practical for us to do a second planting of beans so we'll have another crop in the fall.


Striped cucumbers?


The stripes you may find on the skin of your cucumbers this week are a weather effect, not the consequence of chemical treatments. The cucumbers are pesticide-free and delicious, whether you peel them or eat them with the skin on. 


Join us in helping bring back Monarch Butterflies July  19 & 20
Special FIT4MOM stroller Butterfly Walk on Sunday, July 19 

The most recognizable of all butterflies are in need of our HELP! The Monarch butterfly population has diminished drastically due to the lack of milkweed and nectar plants no longer available for their habitat. Join us July 19 & 20 for monarch education and to learn how you can take action to restore habitat so they can continue their amazing trek to Mexico each year. Visit our new Butterfly way station and learn about the plants that the monarchs need to survive.  

We are especially excited to welcome, Suzanne Malarcher, owner of FIT4MOM Ashburn, for a Stroller Strides class on Sunday, July 20th from 9:30-10:30 am.  FIT4MOM is the country's largest fitness program for moms offering pre and post-natal fitness classes for every stage of motherhood.  "Our mission is to help you take strides in fitness, motherhood and life!   Our classes are meant to give you a total body workout and can be modified for any level of exercise "  Pre-registration via FIT4MOM Ashburn is required for the class and the $8 fee will be donated to Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy to support their mission to save the monarchs and "keep the magic alive." 

       Visit our website for the full schedule of activities.


Dog Days Peach Festival Coming Up
Bring your canine best friend to the farm on August 9 or 10 for our annual Dog Days Peach Festival. This year's festival features a sit-and-stay training obstacle course, a Vet Wagon education session, dog photography tips, and a dog olympics. There will also be a lot of peaches to pick, eat, and take home. And keep your eyes peeled for peach ice cream! Visit our website for more information.

Vacation Requests Welcome!!
With vacation season in full swing, don't forget to take advantage of our CSA Vacation Request benefit so that you enjoy the full value of your share.  Just login .to your account via our website to add a vacation date and request the week you would like to receive a make up share.  Many members choose to take their make up shares when they are expecting company or in September and October when many items have a longer shelf-life such as apples, potatoes and fall squashes.  If a double share is just too much produce, we also offer the option to donate your share to Loudoun Interfaith Relief, our local food pantry.  The farm donates 4 shares each week and are glad to take vacation shares to help those in need in our community
Farm News
In The Farm Market July 15 - 21
Canteloupe ~ $3.99 each
Cucumbers $1 each
GCF Peaches~  $1.99/lb
Watermelon ~ $6.99 each
Sweet Corn ~ $5.99/dz or $.69/ear
Tomatoes $1.99/lb
Summer Squash $1.29/lb
Zucchini $1.29/lb
Plums $2.89/lb
Potatoes $.1.50/lb

CSA U-pick Bonus
July 15 - 21
purple plums
CSA Bonus Ticker
Week 7  7/7: $2.25
Year to Date: $15.51
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