Our CSA Starts Next Week!

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Our CSA Starts Next Week!


Those of you that have read along with my exploits the last few years know I am a great proponent of a CSA. We’ve belonged for many years now, and last year I chronicled our weekly bags. I plan to do the same this year.

While we loved Porter Farms for the quality, abundance and price, the Saturday pick-ups didn’t always work for us. This year, we joined Rootdown Farms because of the pick-up date, and the u-pick herbs. A Thursday pick-up day brings with it a much better chance for our household to use the produce, as opposed to giving away, as Hubby plans his cooking on Friday. While Porter Farms always listed what was in the bag, not being able to pick-up until late morning on Saturday didn’t always work for Hubby’s cooking schedule.

From all your comments over the years, I think the price we paid at Porter Farms for certified organic produce will never be beat. Rootdown Farms is “all natural”. They have decided not to go through the organic process. From what we understand from our pig and cow farmers, it is quite the process. We investigated Rootdown farm’s growing process, and decided “all natural” was good enough for us. The price is almost twice that of Porter Farms, so all I can say is Hubby better take advantage of those herbs, and I better remember to pick some flowers.

Now with all that back-story, here’s the reason for my post:

Good news, the share season will be starting the first week in June.

YAY!! I figure we’ll resemble rabbits the first few weeks with all the leafy greens, but I can’t wait to see what is in the bag July when more produce varieties are locally ready!

Do you belong to a CSA? If so, what type? How much? Do you find it as worthwhile as I do?

Find a CSA
Porter Farms CSA (we belonged for years)
Rootdown Farm CSA (our 2013 CSA)
NYS Fruit and Vegetable Harvest Calendar
US Agricultural Data


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Comments

  1. Cant wait to see all the colorful produce pics! As for me I have my own garden. I currently have a ton of spring onion, lettuce and radishes are finally here! Herbs are great too!

    • Tatiana did you do an organic garden? And, how big is it?

      Ann

      • Hi Ann, yes my garden is organic. It is medium size I guess. Last year I had one 4×8 raised bed, plus a few small areas here and there, but this year its probably about 6 times as big at least, plus I expanded growing areas in the front. I have planted about 30 tomato plants so I am hopeful I will get some fruit. I think I can manage crops and shrubs organically, but I have some young fruit trees too and I am now starting to realize that its very tough to grow fruit organically as there are many pests fungi and bacteria that get to the fruit before I ever could if I did not spray. I am not sure what to do yet about my fruit trees.

        • Yes, organic fruits are very expensive. We used to get a lot of melons from the old CSA … I think that melon rinds are more bug resistant, although the dirty dozen does seem to agree.

          Ann

          • It is hilarious that corn is on the clean list on that web site. 90% of corn is GMO and that is not clean to me.

            • I agree! I am not 100% sold on what they listed, although supposedly they have tested and are “the” authority.

              Ann

            • I believe what the dirty dozen list does is lets people know which fruit & veggies have a lower or higher amount of chemicals on what youre eating.. not whether they’re “good” or not…

  2. Skirnir Hamilton says

    After seeing your posts of last year’s CSA pickups, when my husband came home and said a friend of his was recommending a local CSA in our new state, we decided to give it a shot. We only signed up for a half share, which means we get a pickup every other week. Ours runs from May through October, a total of 12 weeks and costs $420. Still seems expensive to me, but I want to try it and see what happens. I do love fresh vegetables. Our first share was picked up on Monday, 5/20 and is pictured on my blog. My favorite was the 2 quarts of fresh strawberries.

    stretchyourdollaroakridge first csa pick-up

    • Skirnir if it is organic… organic fruits are quite expensive. You are paying $35 a week though, so yeah, pricey. I hope the portions grow.

      Ann

      • I tried to comment on your blog and am having “issues” yet I am sure I posted there before. A burp perhaps?

        Ann

        • NM, got it!

          Ann

          • Skirnir Hamilton says

            I did try and make it obvious that I was undervalueing things, as I had no idea how many pounds a quart of strawberries are… seemed like more than a pound. Also fresh is better than the grocery store $2 for a pound. I had no idea what cauliflower runs, as we have never bought it before, but my hubby rather liked the dish, so I bet I will buy it again sometime. 🙂 And yes, I do hope the size of things go up, as I am sure it will. As they had said that the rain had washed out some of the early plantings and they had to be replanted or some such thing. Last time they emailed before the pickup telling us what would be in it, but haven’t received any emails yet. But hopefully soon, as our next pickup is Monday. Looking forward to it and wondering what recipe we will be trying this coming week. 🙂

            • Skirnir Hamilton says

              Apparently my CSA only uses the words naturally grown and sustainable. Thought it was organic, as many CSA’s are, but don’t see that word in their description. They are supposedly one of the only local CSA’s to do fruits and vegetables, ie they have two kinds of apples in production and peaches, I think it was. Of course, berries of a couple of sorts, but seen that in many CSAs.

              • This new one I joined says “all natural” too, instead of organic. I read through their website and blog on their growing process, and they seemed to me like they are “organic” without being labeled “organic” due to the high cost of getting certified. Maybe the same for your CSA?

                And yeah, fruits are hard and very expensive in the organic realm! You can see why from Tatiana’s comments above. We have only seen melons with our old CSA. The new CSA only lists melons too. I envy you your strawberries!

                Ann

                • Ann, “all natural” means there is no guarantee they don’t grow GMO. Tomatoes and corn fist come to mind to be potentially GMO. I guess if they give you heirloom tomatoes you should be ok. With corn, I would be skeptical.

                  • We never received corn from the last CSA, this one will give this one: Corn (pop and milling). Reading their blog and website, I am 99.99999999% sure nothing with be GMO. Sounds like they dug up seeds from 200 years ago. 😉

                    Ann

  3. Hi Ann, I have tried to find a CSA near us in Irving Texas. That is right outside Dallas and there are none within 25 miles. The closest one is about 50 miles away, you add the price of joining and fuel to get there it is not worth it to me.The closest thing to me is a worm farm and somehow I just don’t think I want to eat worms. But I did find several Farmer’s Markets very close to me that I didn’t know existed. I plan to try several of these in the next couple of weeks. Anyhoo, you have me all excited because Texas is known for its Blueberries, Blackberries and Peaches so I will let you know how these places worked. While looking through the CSA sight, I found a Ranch that will deliver for free hormone free beef, as long as you buy $125 of product. I called and left a message because his sight sounded wonderful and I figure in my refrigarator’s freezer I should be able to hold $125 worth of beef.

    • WOW! There are a lot of listed CSAs in Texas too. I love blueberries and blackberries, and really envy you!

      Good luck with your beef. When we first started ordering it was a lot more per pound than grocery store beef, but when we got it this year, there wasn’t all that much of a price difference! I think the price of beef has skyrocketed. Hopefully since you are in Texas it won’t be too bad.

      Ann

    • Candie, You might want to call the CSA’s in your region & ask if they have drop off points anywhere near you. My CSA is actually based about 30 miles from me (about an hours drive thru the country) but they deliver in 2 of the towns that neighbor mine.. That made it worthwhile for me to belong. If I had to drive out to Middlefield every week, I wouldnt be a member.

      • That’s a good point, Kim Our old CSA farm is 45 minutes away, but the drop off point we picked up at was 5 minutes away. They do have 40 or so drop-off points.

        Ann

  4. Awesome on your CSA starting up next week.. So does mine & I cant wait!! Im sooo excited. I need to get my frig cleaned out..
    I bought myself an OmegaVert330 juicer in March when they were half off on Amazon so if I dont eat all my veggies, Im gonna juice em. 🙂 Ya add an apple, orange or two, or berries to any juice, even kale, & it tastes great! I always add a knob of ginger too.. Yum!

    I do think you got a fantastic deal last year on your CSA.. but if its not convenient, its just not. I’ve wobbled back & forth from Saturdays to Tuesdays and now Im going back to Saturdays. The first year I picked up on Saturdays, the time-frame was too early for me.. I dont sleep all day long but I may very well sleep till 8:30 or 9 and I am NOT leaving my house without a shower.. Running around with bed head is not something I do. I almost missed a few pickups at that place..
    The next year I picked up on Tuesdays at another site which was awesome cuz I picked up just after work and it was perfect.. but.. Im not working now & that location is quite a ways away from my house & I dont know when or where I’ll be working when I eventually do go back to work. The best thing for me to do was to go back to Saturday and I picked a 3rd option for me which gives me a much longer window for picking up.. I think they’re there till 1:30.. so thats perfect for my sluggish old butt..

    Our CSA farmers are all certified organic and most are Amish though there is 1 veggie farmer who is not but was raised Amish. The CSA also partners with a couple other farms/meat producers who arent Amish in addition to the Amish meat producers they do have. Its a fantastic group & I’ve loved being a part of their CSA & visiting their farms & getting to know some of them.

    We do get some fruit in our shares, some is organic & some is not.

    I wouldnt necessarily say we’re getting a financial steal because we pay basically market price for our goods.(Not thrilled about that) But what we do get that makes it more than worthwhile is we are eating LOCAL, ORGANIC and we are eating FRESH!! Much of it is picked the day of or the day before delivery. Im supporting people I know and Im welcome on their farms any time in addition to the open house events they hold twice a month on the different farms. I love that..
    Another plus we get is that we’re plugged into the local food economy and group. If I didnt want to join the CSA, I’ve learned where I can get certain goods that Im interested in like grass fed beef, pastured eggs & chicken and just recently they partnered with a guy who has lamb, beef, chicken & all sorts of related products. This guys stuff is awesome!

    Overall, its very worth it to me.. I’d rather pay a little more for fresh, local, organic than pay a doctor down the line from eating a bunch of chemical laden foods that may or may not be GMO that were grown in other countries & shipped in the US. Yep.. Im totally loving Local Organic.

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