THE BEET: Volume 14, Issue 8

This Week's Beet:

  • Bring plastic bags!
  • Reminder: Sign up to volunteer
  • This week's share
  • Letter from Ted & Windflower Farm
  • Cucumbers- benefits and practical uses

Pick Up Today: 5:00 to 7:30pm at PS 56 on the Corner of Gates and Downing


FULL SHARE AND YELLOW HALF SHARE PICK UP


PLEASE BRING YOUR EXTRA BAGS TO SHARE!

We are running low on extra bags.  If you have extra at home or work (which I know you do) please bring them with you tonight to share with members who may need extra.  Thanks!

A GENTLE REMINDER:

We have been a little light on volunteers the past 2 weeks.  If you haven't done so yet- please sign up here.


THIS WEEK'S SHARE:

  • tomatoes
  • peppers or eggplants
  • red cabbage
  • snap beans or bunched baby beets
  • cucumbers
  • squash or zucchini
  • bianca onions
  • dinosaur or red russian kale
  • romain lettuce
  • fruit: plums or blueberries

News from Windflower Farm:

A friend (and fellow farmer) and I spent yesterday afternoon at the new Hudson Valley Farm Hub near Kingston. We went to see what the hub-bub (sorry) was about, to check out some of the fancy European equipment on exhibit, and to visit with the old friends we knew would be there. The farm hub is part of the Local Economies Project, which is project of the New World Foundation and established, ultimately, with funding from Warren Buffet’s fortune. It’s goal is to “foster a regional agriculture that is environmentally sound, economically vibrant and socially responsible.” Because, if you were to replace the words “regional agriculture” with “farm” that phrase could come straight from Windflower Farm’s own mission statement, along with that of virtually every organic farmer I know, I figured I ought to check in. You can check in, too, if you like, by going to www.hvfarmhub.org. How they will accomplish these aims is not clear, just as we have learned that, at the scale of our individual farm, they remain elusive. But one thing is apparent: local communities are central to the solution. 

When you become a CSA member – a “shareholder” in more traditional CSA parlance – you are agreeing not only to share in the risks of a risky business, you are also agreeing to participate in a way of growing food that strives to be environmentally better than the pesticide- and fertilizer-intensive farming of our predecessors. And you are agreeing to experiment in an economic model that is at some variance with convention – you pay in advance, you stick with us (or the small collection of growers we represent)  every week, thick or thin, for a long season, and you agree to support the larger mission of farmworker welfare, which begins with paying a fair wage and providing good, safe working conditions. None of these things would be happening in the Hudson Valley if it weren’t for loyal customers, like you, who know what they were paying for when they buy organic vegetables and believe in the importance of food grown with a greater purpose. I know it sounds corny, but it reminds me of the phrase everyone sings out at the end of a 12-step meeting: “it works if you work it, so keep coming back!”  The growth of the CSA movement (and the local foods movement) has increased the number of viable organic farms in the Valley, the number of acres under organic production, and the amount of organic food going to local households like no other farming movement before it.  

When I returned to the farm, I found son Nate’s head shaved, a deep, rough gash on the top of his head mended with four steel staples and my computer’s browser open to a page on “brain hemorrhage.”  It turns out that the post pounder Nate was using overhead when working on some fencing slipped and came crashing down on his skull. It was a bloody business. On top of it,  Jan and Jacob were grocery shopping, I was at the farm hub and, at first, Nate couldn’t find a phone with which to reach out for help. He eventually found one in the box truck, but none of us answered his call right away. Bleeding badly and thinking he might be in some trouble, he shaved the area around the wound to get a better look and then searched the internet for signs of serious head injury. By the time Jan arrived home, he had things well in hand, but they went off the clinic anyway for another opinion and four steel staples. In sixteen years here we have had just one other farm accident requiring more than a bandage, and that was when Salvador did exactly the same thing with a post pounder. It may be a crazy coincidence, but I think we’ll hire a professional the next time we install a deer fence.

Best,

Ted


CUCUMBERS!

Cucumbers are a secret vitamin powerhouse. They contain most of the vitamins you need every day; just one cucumber contains Vitamin B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, Folic Acid, Vitamin C, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium and Zinc.  And- did you know that all that Vitamin B can provide a quick pick-me-up in lieu of caffeine?  Eating a cucumber salad in the afternoon will renew your energy and focus, with out leaving you jittery.

Cucumbers are more than just food- here's a list of other uses that will amaze you:

  1. De-fogging your bathroom mirror: try rubbing a slice along the mirror after a shower: it will eliminate the fog, and leave your bathroom smelling sweet
  2. Eliminates garden grubs: put a few slices in a pie tin and place in you garden: the chemicals in the cucumber react with the aluminum to give off a scene which will drive away garden pests.
  3. Removing celulite lines before going to the beach: rub a few slices of cucumber along the lines for a few minutes: the phytochemical in the cucumber cause the collagen in your skin tighten; firming up the outer layer and reducing cellulite visibility.
  4. Hangover cure:  Eating a few slices before bed will help you wake up headache free!  Cucumbers contain enough sugar and B vitamins and electrolytes to replenish you overnight.
  5. Stressed out?  Cut up an entire cucumber and place it in boiling water: the chemicals and nutrients from the cucumber will react with the boiling water and release in the steam, creating a soothing, relaxing aroma that will help reduce stress.
  6. Eliminate bad breath: Pressing a cucumber slice to the roof of your mouth with your tongue for 30 seconds will kill the bacteria in your mouth which cause bad breath!

Here's another recipe: Cucumber Peanut Salad.  This salad only gets better the next day!