Welcome to Week 13 of the Winter Share. It's hard to believe the season is winding down already. Including this week, there are just 3 more pick-ups for winter and then we move into Summer the first week of June.

Overall, this time of the year lacks most in variety. We try to make up for it with more ready-to-eat items. Although less in quantity, the value in these items helps make up for the volume of raw vegetables found in early season bags. For example, this week's ratatouille started last summer with fresh tomatoes that were roasted and peeled, fresh peppers that were chopped and sauted, and eggplant, zucchini, and squash that were peeled, chopped, and roasted separately for texture consistency, before all being stewed together into our signature ratatouille.

Similarly, the broccoli and cauliflower soups start with in season vegetables, blanched and frozen until there is time in the winter to turn them into soup. We then make rich chicken broth to enrich the soup, and blend it with some guernsey cream for a silky smooth finish.

But about this week, a few product highlights this week:
  • Home Opener Bundle -- get ready for baseball season with this special price offer for hot dogs, hot dog buns, ketchup & shredded cheddar cheese. Save 20% on the bundle!
  • Easter order form will close at the end of the day today. This order form is separate from the usual CSA site. Place an order HERE for ham, lamb, wine & cider and cookies.
  • Buttercream Sugar Cookies are back, this week in 2 formats. 6-pack of decorated cookies, as well as a DIY decorating kit that includes 10 baked cookies + 3 naturally colored frostings.

Summer season starts in 2 months and we hope you'll join us! Your subscription does not automatically re-enroll, so be sure to add the summer season to your account. Sign up for summer HERE. More details about the summer packages - size & food options - can be found HERE.

Have a great week.

Trevor & the FFM Team
This week's promotions

Includes: Hot dogs, beef + pork blend (8-pack), Fluffy Duck Hot dog Buns (8-pack), Ketchup & Shredded Cheddar cheese.

Save 20% -- $18

Spice it up by topping it off with some candied jalapenos.

Short Date SALE

We have some cheeses & whole milk that are coming up on their best by date, so we've put them on sale with a special price point for the week. Find them in the Weekly promotions category.

Pair the cheeses with a bag of Rosemary Black Pepper or Whole Wheat Crackers for an easy weeknight snack or appetizer for the holiday.
and Earthworms
Spring has us scrambling around the farm. The sun has us both excited and anxious. It's planting season for our produce farmers, which means:

  • starting vegetables in the greenhouse, ready to transplant after the risk of frost
  • working the soil. Getting seed-beds ready through plowing, discing, and harrowing
  • forming raised beds and laying mulch for weed control

Of course, weather is the biggest variable here. The soils must be just right to work. Too wet and it's not only difficult, but you risk causing long term damage to your drainage. Too dry, and you over work the soil and create a perfect weed bed.

At Wholesome Valley this year, we are really focusing a lot on our pastures. Our rotational grazing system is intended to strengthen the pastures over time, helping keep desirable varieties thriving and using the manure from our livestock to feed the soil biology.
worm castings
Recently, I've been most excited about wormcastings. Allyson sometimes gets frustrated when we walk our dogs and all I can do is take photos of the soil. Yeah, blue skies are pretty, but so are the drilled in holes of the earthworm. It shows the progress and recovery I'm after in our fields.

Worm castings are the little piles of dirt on top of the sod. It looks almost like someone splattered mud across the field. It's really the result of worms. Other signs of earthworms include little holes drilled in the soil.

The earthworms help oxygen and water travel into the soil through their little tunnels. This also allows the soil to drain better and keep from becoming compacted. Well drained, aerated soils help plants thrive. It also creates an environment favorable to other soil biology, ranging from insects to bacteria, that help break down organic matter such as manure, leaves, and grass clippings, to create a more fertile soil that can support a better, healthier harvest. This cycle, once started, begins to snowball and grows healthier year after year.

While I haven't yet come to embrace thistle in the fields, I can certainly celebrate other biological diversity in our fields!
This week's bag features one of my favorite items -- ratatouille. During the summer months, we roast off fresh zucchini, summer squash, eggplant, onions, and tomatoes. Then cook it down in a large stock pot into this stew-like dish. It's easy to use and will pair well with the whole chicken and/or pasta in this week's bag.

Another product that features produce items from the summer months is the soup. We harvested and saved things like broccoli and cauliflower to make for a special product in the winter shares during this time of the season when we're at the end of winter storage crops and just before the first of the early spring items arrive. The soup is in a variety of flavors.

The Strawberry Stuff in the vegetarian bag is made from strawberries that were processed in the summer months and turned into a delicious sauce-like condiment that is also versatile. Add it to your oatmeal or yogurt, or even atop ice cream.

Whole Chicken
Ratatouille (1 quart)
Soup (1 quart)


Ratatouille (1 quart)
Blueberries (frozen)
Strawberry Stuff

** Vegetable. This week our farmers all fell short on spinach for everyone. It's two weeks off due to the weather, so this week there will be a vegetable based on what we can piece together. Some will get kale, others mushrooms, some chard, etc. Our suppliers are working with us to piece this together.

This is important to point out that even though the temps are rising, spring is the hardest time of the year for local. Storage crops are past, and the greenhouses and high tunnels are dedicated to this season's main harvest.
As the summer season draws near, we're looking to grow our team! We're hiring for a variety of roles -- warehouse based, farm routes, pick-up location based and hybrid roles. Part-time and full-time positions available. Employee discounts on subscriptions + groceries. Come join the team and help us deliver just-harvested, fresh, nutritious, farm-to-table groceries to our customers!

More details HERE.

-- Delivery Driver (farm runs + pick-up location routes) --
-- Packer (year round + seasonal positions) --
-- Greeter (work just 1 location, or multiple) --