A window into the production path of your food.
There was no snow. But let it be known, so much rain. I am not trying to turn into your weekly weather exclaimer. I am not even making original predictions, just parroting what I have heard on the radio or, even more ludicrous, what I have seen. Yes. We can observe. As, too can you. But I was thinking the other day about my relationship to the weather. The thought rose to the surface while watching some t.v. nonsense. The characters experienced a touch of rain. It had no effect on them personally. They just went on about their lives. They didn't discuss the work it was creating or diminishing. They didn't sigh with relief or shudder. They just floated on.
The weather barely effected them, or so they thought! If this story continued (and took a drastically sharp turn from ridiculous crime drama to causal attention to daily life) we would find it was two months later, towards the end of June, when these non-farmers at last noticed the effects of the week of straight rain at the end of April. They were accustomed to getting tomatoes from the farmers' market by then. Those are the early tomatoes. Those are the ones that should have been planted a week ago to be swelling up to vine-ripened sweetness as June rounds the bend. Well, ours will be there in time but not on time. So let it be known: this is the fishhook weather that made them late for their date.
Find us at the following markets from this Saturday onward!
Ann Arbor Saturday
White Lotus Farm Cart! That's right, from now on you can find us in the bucolic setting of White Lotus Farm! The farm cart is open Saturdays from 9:30am-1:30pm, May thru December, and is located at 7217 West Liberty Road, Ann Arbor, MI 48103. There is pizza, there are gardens, there are wonderful people. Find The Brinery with their delicious fermented products, Whitney Farms with their meats and hand-crafted arts, White Lotus Farms wit their exceptional bread, cheese, and botanical products, among others.
Here are all of our markets and their expected start dates:
Ann Arbor (Wednesday): May 15th
Northville (Thursday): May 23rd
Stockbridge (Friday): May 10th
Chelsea (Saturday): May 11th
Royal Oak (Saturday): May 18th
To our Howell Farmers' Market patrons: Sadly, we are no longer going to attend the Sunday Howell Farmers' Market. We will miss everyone, but it makes a lot of sense for our business and our family to cling to one day of solitude in the storm that is farming. Please come visit us when you can at our other markets. In the meantime, we are we don't feel completely terrible about leaving the market because we know Renegade Acres (certified organic and out of Howell) and Two Track Acres (not certified but wonderful growers with a growing family, out of Grass Lake) are still attending the market. Between those two, you are definitely covered for spirit and most likely covered for all the produce. Additionally, if you add in Cinzori farm, a certified organic vegetable farm that is also at the market, you are covered for all the possible vegetables.
We hope that you understand our decision and want to emphasize that your support of us over the last few growing seasons has made a huge difference for us. Thank you so much for being part of Lake Divide's formative years.
Pea shoots are delicious. I told lots of you all about how delicious they are last week. Here is one of my favorite things to do with them. Keep in mind, you can chop them up and add them to anything for an extra crunch. In hot dishes, I like to stir them in at the end, so they just turn bright green with out losing their texture.
Pasta with wilted Pea Shoots:
Cook pasta. While the pasta is cooking, chop up some scallions and pea shoots. Drain the pasta and return it to the hot pot. Toss in the shoots and scallions along with some balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and some grated Parmesan cheese. If you like, you can also add pine nuts, but it is great on its own.
This is a wonderful dish with any green and pea shoots are no exception. Make a large portion and dole it out through the week for lunch and dinner. See if you can make it last longer than a sitting. I barely can.
Food for thought:
The weather, as my upwards rant focused on, is a huge wrench in our plans. But it is to be expected. We were supposed to be doing all kinds of field work that just can't be done when the ground is this wet. Tractor stuff, which would then lead to building stuff, which would then lead to planting stuff. But, instead of moping about resenting the inevitable, we decided to use this time to fill in all the gaps that we ignore when the world is streaming past our faces. We are fixing, cleaning, moving, arranging. We are focusing on making the busiest of times smooth.
And we are getting so much done. Yesterday we weeded almost every planting that we have in the field and caught up on some important office work. Today we divided into two teams of two and one team of three (SO MANY PEOPLE!) So far we caught up on seeding, potted up some adorable plants for your gardens, rearranged the greenhouse, planted a hoop house full of cucumbers and squash, updated our deer fence for increased efficiency, and retrieved more potting mix for yet more plants. And this afternoon, we are going to get a bunch more planted in the field- napa cabbage (which is looking awesome this year, by the way), chard, and oh yeah, that delicious kohlrabi we can't wait for! It is amazing what a team of focused folks can accomplish and how us working together amplifies all of our abilities.
A couple weeks ago, the greenhouse was so full, I thought we were fools for thinking our greenhouse could contain all that we have planned. Over the last few weeks we have been emptying it out. I built some shelves. There was more room. And I started to wonder. What was I worried about? And now, the ramp up is back at it and it is almost a full house again. Okay. We are certainly entering the time-flux!
We are excited and looking forward and glad to be here.
And everyone, including you, should start hoping for less rain please.
Helen writing for the Lake Dividers
Good for the Earth, Good for the Farmers, Good for the People
- Looking to join our CSA or renew your membership? Find more details here. The basics? Open an account with us, get a bonus, and use your account to purchase produce with us at any of our markets. If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to ask.
- We are hiring! We have 1 part-time position open for the 2019 season. You can find details about the jobs on our website here. If you or anyone you know may be interested, please send us an email or pass along the information.
- We are accepting workshares both on the farm and at market. Please email for details.
This week we are buying in some produce from local farms to make up for some gaps. These items are noted with an asterisk (*). We will not be able to bring these items to the Ann Arbor Farmers' market because of their producer only rule (which we love). You will be able to find them at The White Lotus Farm Cart and Eastern Market. Fresh From the Field!Greens:Microgreens: Solo-Arugula and a Mustard Mix (only to be found at Ann Arbor and Eastern)
Pea Shoots (only to be found at Ann Arbor and Eastern)
All manner of deliciousness:
*Daikon Radish- purple and white!
*Green Garlic (not certified organic but responsibly done)
*Potatoes- yukon gold and Kerr's Pink
*Onions- yellow (not certified organic but responsibly done)
This weeks Markets
Ann Arbor, Detroit's Eastern Market, and The White Lotus Farm Cart
The Ann Arbor Market is located in the Kerrytown District at 315 Detroit St, Ann Arbor, MI. The market runs from May thru December, 7 am to 3 pm and January thru April from 8 am to 3 pm.
The Eastern Market in Detroit is located about a mile northeast of downtown. It covers about 43 acres, bounded by I-75 on the West and Gratiot Avenue on the South. It runs year round from 6am – 4pm
The White Lotus Farm Cart is located at 7217 West Liberty Road, Ann Arbor, MI 48103. It is open Saturdays from 9:30am-1:30pm, May thru December. There is a collection of vendors there selling produce, bread, cheese, artisanal produces, along with brick oven pizza and the opportunity to roam the gardens.