Week No. 3 - 2010 Season

Organic food is Nature’s medicine for you, for the Earth, for the future

All true wealth comes from fertile soil. Health comes from it, too. Dr. Mimi Guarneri, respected cardiologist and popular teacher, notes in her beautiful book “The Heart Speaks,” that the father of modern medicine firmly advocated that food is medicine, food is Nature, food is health. All human communities that tended soil eventually learned that to exploit soil for wealth was to exhaust, sicken and ultimately destroy it. What each of us does on this ground that covers about 1/5 of Earth’s surface can ruin every inch of vital water, climate, ecology, soil, health for us and our children. Or it can heal, conserve, enrich, sustain it. These thoughts race in my mind when someone asks me what food I grow and sell to them costs. We’re all taught to price food, but not health. What is health worth? What price would you put on a child’s health? As I delivered vegetables around Madison, I saw a timeless bumper sticker. It read, “If you’re not upset, you’re not paying attention.” To read, hear, view competent sources of information, is to feel gravely concerned about the world’s sustainability. Yet to step into a garden or field in the Upper Midwest, is to realize every solution is in the community of one of the world’s richest deposits of fertile soil. Together, we tend about 40 acres of it. It takes about 250 households to sustain a CSA farm family. Through this family, these households can manage soil organically; localize food production; keep poisons out of water, food, air; cut carbon emissions, keep children healthy. Scotch Hill Farm has about 150 subscribers. We’re working hard to become self-sustaining. As the many vegetables we’ve planted for summer bounty begin to yield, we’ll add 15-week, 10-week and fall subscriptions. If you can commend us to a friend, relative, co-worker, neighbor, we’ll all benefit. Information and order forms will be at www.scotchhillfarm.com Weed, wine and cheese – Some of our plants are cultivated with a tractor in rows. Others are sown thickly in beds inches apart and must be weeded by hand. Every vegetable has some essential, vital mineral, vitamin, healing property. All contribute to human health. When subscribers help weed vegetable beds early on, the boost is huge. Even one visit for a few hours at a critical stage of plant development, gives crops the ability to increase in size and health over the weeds that would rob them of light, water, space to grow. This Saturday, June 26, is a designated day in the life of our farm for those able to lend a hand weeding. Come work as long or as short a time as you like (9 a.m. until late). Potluck with us at meal times. Enjoy Dela’s cream cheese and Trish’s ice cream from our goat milk. Bring a beverage of your choice. Experience the work and joy of garden and field. Get to know the plants, animals, people and place that are your farm. Storm damage: 70-mile-per-hour winds that swept northern Illinois this past week reached our farm. The drenching rain seemed to affect our chard more than any other crop. It shredded leaves of this otherwise indestructible member of the spinach family. Not all leaves sustained damage. We salvaged as much of this vitamin-rich crop for you as we could. The plants should begin to yield more now as the weather settles down. Be sure to try our son Micah’s Yummy Chard Pie recipe in the A to Z Cookbook.

This Week’s Vegetables are:

  •  Lettuce mix
  • Garlic Scapes (a cutting from the plant, which helps the bulb grow larger before harvest in July, chop it up and use it just like garlic cloves)
  • Young Bright Lights Chard
  • Basil
  • Season’s first carrots with last of early turnips
  • Broccoli (an early taste of an heirloom variety called Di Cicco; more will come as this plant grows along with another variety called Marathon)
  • Heirloom celery (a small, especially flavorful variety, try drying its leaves to use in soups after cutting stems into salads)
  • Snow Peas

Cooking Tip for the Week

You can use all of the vegetable fixings this week in hot or cold pasta recipes. Try them with sesame seed oil or your favorite salad dressing. Again this week, all of your subscription’s ingredients can be prepared raw in salads. Many crops are very close to yielding now, increasing in size and number. Shares should start to increase in size very soon. Our cucumber and pole bean vines are making their way to the sky in our high tunnel greenhouse. Surely, a giant will join Jack and us for our potluck this weekend. Bring a camera!