July 5 Week Four- Independence Day

Onions with Thrips

  • Zucchini
  • Beets
  • Lettuce
  • Spring garlic
  • Dill
  • Yellow crooked neck squash
  • Spinach
  • Carrots
Independence Day is  my favorite holiday (right after my birthday). On the fourth of July we celebrate America, show our patriotism, strengthen community, decorate very little (just a flag on the front porch will do), we eat great food hot off the grill and revel in the beauty of explosives. Every year I go to the Freistadt parade just a mile from the farm. Freistadt is a small, old German community full of a rich history tucked off on the edge of Mequon. As I walked to the Freistadt parade, I was struck by how quiet everything was. No one out in their yard, hardly any cars on the road, all houses empty, but as I made my way up to the top of Freistadt hill, I could hear in the distance a band playing some patriotic tune, children shrieking, sirens piercing and tractors chugging. I knew that when I reached the top I’d have a visual to accompany this musical. It kind of reminds me of the rain. I hear the thunder and even see the lightening of storms passing just beyond us, and I wonder when I’ll get to the top of that “hill” and finally see rain drops smattering the earth, settling the dust and soaking into the ground.

This week’s share is lots of fun. We’re finishing up spring veggies and heading into summer food. Spring garlic is uncured garlic fresh from the ground. This means that it hasn’t been allowed to sit outside and dry for 6-8 weeks and get those crispy wrappers around the bulbs, which improve long term storage. Spring garlic would be kept refirigerated in a plastic bag and will keep for a few weeks. Zucchini and crooked neck yellow squash are both summer squashes and can be used interchangeably in recipes. Add it to shish-ka-bobs on the grill or eat raw in a cold salad. The carrots in the full share boxes are Paris Market carrots. They look like miniature bulbs. Some are skinnier than they should be because I neglected to thin them, but like a neighbor told me yesterday, “You can’t taste a shape!” Make a dill dip for the carrots and crunch away. You can even use the carrot tops. The World Carrot Museum shares carrot top recipes and information on allergies and carrot relatives. Beets are best I think when they are roasted. Try this recipe, but feel free to modify. The important part is the roasting. It brings out the beet sugars. Or make a super moist chocolate beet cake!

Bug report: The picture above is of the onion crop crippled by an insect call a thrip. Thrips suck the moisture out of the leaves. They love onions, but can affect a wide range of plants. The flea beetles look to be slowing down now. The plants have a long way to go to recover from the damage though. And cucumber beetles are still around, but the plants have gotten big enough to support themselves.

And that’s the news from the farm this week. Eat your veggies!

July 5 Week Four- Independence Day

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