Busy farm life

Life on the farm continues to pickup as we transition away from the spring “prep” season into full production mode. In this regard, you’ll notice your vegetable boxes getting bigger as the season progresses. Whether a veggie CSA member or not, we’re working hard to produce the most nutritious, locally grown food available. Sometimes we’re amazed at how much food is actually being produced here at the farm and at the bakery. We thank you for your support! Without you, this wouldn’t be possible.

Before we describe what’s in your boxes this week (including a recipe idea for garlic scapes), we thought we’d give you a peek into life on the farm. Tony was able to take his camera around for a couple days this past week. His pictures follow:

Indian Ridge Farm is comprised of 120 acres, 65 of which are irrigated pasture lands leased to a neighboring multi-generational ranching family. This field is near the house and getting close to being hayed. That is Indian Ridge proper in the background, looking to our north. Most ranchers on Wrights Mesa are able to get one cutting, maybe two during the summer, before their cows return from high country pastures in the fall. One of our fields is now already in its third cutting because of the intensive rotational grazing we practice there with chickens, turkeys and steers.

 

 

Wonder why our eggs are so amazing in their yolk color and taste! Wonder no more: It’s the soil health in our grass pastures. Here, a flock of Rhode Island Reds are introduced to fresh pasture this past week. Those are solar panels in the background. Our farm is entirely powered by solar energy.

 

We also raise pigs at the farm, for sale by the side (halves or whole pigs). These pigs are enjoying the leftovers of one of our meals. That pond in the background is our favorite swimming hole!

 

This photo depicts the grass pastures that the meat chickens and turkeys graze on, with some of the farm infrastructure and the San Juan Mountains in the background. In the foreground, those are Joel Salatin-styled  pastured poultry pens, which are moved every day onto fresh grass. The movement onto fresh grass daily assures you the healthiest chickens available, while the birds leave behind their fertility, enhancing the grasslands and helping sequester carbon from the air. Also in this image, we have two hoop houses which is where the tomatoes are planted.

 

 

The “big event” Thursday was moving our flock of turkeys onto pasture. It’s almost become a ritual on the farm every early summer. The turkeys are herded about a tenth of a mile from their coop onto fresh pastures, where they will live the rest of the summer. We raise about 125 heritage bronze and standard white turkeys on pasture. If you haven’t already done so, reserve your turkey now; they’re always a sellout! Go to the Farm button and look for the “Meat Order Form” or you can always catch up to us at the Telluride Farmers Market on Fridays, where we have a signup list.

 

Not only can you pre-order turkeys for the fall, but we are also offering a discount if you order and take delivery right now (before July 15th) of Winter Storage Chickens. That’s right, order six or more birds right now for your freezer and receive a 10% discount on your order.  You can sign up for your birds by using the same meat order form as would for turkeys. Please note, all of the birds we currently have available for this discount are between 4.5 and 5.5 pounds.

And now, a few words from the CSA manager and gardener, Anne:

Grow garden grow!
In this week’s box you will find a multitude of greens. Among them, salad mix, spinach, kale, broccoli raab and I couldn’t help but slip in some sweet, beautiful butter head lettuce.
The root family will be represented by sweet carrots, purple top turnips and radishes. And last but not least, look for cilantro, just a few peas and garlic scapes. What are garlic scapes you ask? These are the long, curly garlic shoots/flower buds of the hard neck garlic plant. They have a delicious garlic flavor and can be sautéed in combination with other veggies.  You can treat them just as you would garlic cloves, but here are some creative ideas to try.
My kids eat the peeled turnips as if they were an apple but you can peel both the turnips and radishes if you prefer a milder flavor. . We’ve been enjoying marinated radish salads. One bunch of radish sliced thin, dressed with olive oil, vinegar, salt and a sprinkle of sesame seeds. Leave it to sit for a few hours in the fridge and just before eating add a healthy pile of chopped cilantro. The peas aren’t doing much this year. Enjoy this week’s little picking and we’ll see what comes.   Remember your veggies aren’t washed and please bring us your boxes, bags and rubber bands.
We also have lots more recipe ideas here and on our web page.
We thank you now and always and look forward to seeing you this Friday!