Weekly Newsletter, Earth Day, 2013
EARTH DAY, 2013
Today is Earth Day. A headline screamed at us this morning, “Poll Shows Americans Care Less About Environment.” Apparently our fellow citizens care less about the environment today than they did the year Earth Day was founded in 1971. That confounds us. Yes, the environment was in peril more than 40 years ago. Lake Erie was literally aflame with chemical contamination (hard to believe) and the smog throughout the land was not only gross but sickening. The country went about trying to right the ship by, among other things, establishing the Environmental Protection Agency and adopting Clean Air and Water Standards that are still being enforced today. But the issues and the import of protecting the environment have not gone away. The long-term sustainability of our planet demands that we quit dirtying our own nest. It’s up to all of us to make a pledge of putting the health of our habitat — Mother Earth — near the top of our list of concerns. The earth will live on, but will humans be able to inhabit what is already becoming hostile.
You’ve made a strong commitment to enhancing the health of the environment, and by extension, your own health and the regional community’s economic health, by joining a CSA. Obviously much more needs to be done. We were discussing this morning at the breakfast table the pressing issue of climate change, and just how committed we are as a family to adopting even more far-reaching lifestyle changes to try to reduce our own carbon footprint. It’s not easy. Where do we draw lines? Are we ready to live by those lines? Truly?
Baby chicks, piggies, carrots, head lettuce and arugula, oh my!
We know many of you were gone recently during spring break, rejuvenating your bodies, spending quality time with each other and your families, seeing incredible places on this beautiful planet Earth. Meanwhile, we want to let you know that life on the farm is starting to grow vigorously! These past two weeks have been adventure-filled, to say the least. In true Rocky Mountain springtime fashion, we’ve persevered through snowstorms, rain, hail, strong winds, dust, record cold temps and several bluebird sky days to keep our moral up. The list of what’s growing either in the garden, the hoophouse or in starts for later transplanting is long: spinach, salad mix, arugula, mustard greens, carrots, peas, fava beans, radishes, turnips, broccoli raab, broccoli, fennel, peppers, eggplant, onions, scallions, garlic, leeks, boc choi, head lettuce, variety of herbs, kale, beets, Chinese cabbage and rhubarb. Phew! Probably missed a few. And by the time you read this, we assuredly will have planted even more. It’s a short growing season at 7000’ in elevation — no longer possible to stop this freight train now that it’s left the station!
Four batches of pastured poultry birds live in the brooder, with the oldest batch going out on pasture for the first time this Wednesday. The layer hen flocks are doing well, laying up a storm and enjoying the spring green grasses around the farm. Ten little piggies, managed by a former intern, Andrew, are running around and keeping us all smiling in their goofiness. They will soon be out in pasture too. Dahlia the goat continues to produce some fine, fine milk every morning. We’ve been starting to train Alberta, our Ardenne workhorse so she can help with morning chores and other activities. Oh, let’s not forget the guinea hens that are already hard at work controlling bugs and getting into all kinds of small-time mischief. Tink the miniature horse is ready for a big winter coat brushing and will certainly bring smiles to the kids that will be riding him this summer.
We’d be remiss if we didn’t announce that one of our apprentices, Stephanie Turco, has been here three weeks already. In a short word, she’s AWESOME. She has a very kind personality, she’s bright and is a real pleasure to teach and work alongside. Hannah, our second apprentice arrives this weekend after graduating Ft. Lewis College on Saturday.
Sales of our addictive granola are expanding on the Front Range, where we have a baker (another former intern/baker, Hilary), a bakery and several markets we’re serving. We’ve been accepted to market the granola at the Boulder Whole Foods, and are also selling to Loco Foods, Vitamin Cottage and the Boulder, Longmont and Ft. Collins farmers markets. Spread the word!
Place your meat orders now online!
Orders are now being taken for grass-fed meat orders. We’ve partnered with Farmigo, the same online subscription service that is managing our CSA. Please go to www. farmigo.com/store/indianridgefarm/
At the site you’ll be able to reserve your winter storage chickens, a pastured turkey if you didn’t buy one through the CSA, a side of grass-fed lamb, a side of one of Andrew’s pork (Andrew has also been accepted to the Telluride Farmers Market this year as the pork vendor under the name Pastured Powered Pork), or some beef through Norwood’s own Laid Back Beef. As you know, all of our products sellout, so we strongly encourage you to place your deposit now on a meat order. The process is very simple.
Feel like getting your hands dirty?
If you’re looking for something to do this off-season and have some spare time on your hands, please don’t hesitate to come out to the farm! This is a great time of year to be farming, to get your hands in the soil, but mostly, to help us out as we continue to nurture life into the farm and vitality into the food we’ll all be enjoying all season long. We can’t emphasize this enough: we need all the help we can get right now! This is a cry, a plea! While here, you can purchase some of last season’s wintered over garlic, spinach, farm fresh eggs and more. There’s already some great food available right here at the farm. Please call a day or two in advance if you know you will be coming out so we can schedule you in (327-0336).
Or, if you’re looking for a scheduled time to come out to the farm, keep in mind that this year’s CSA Work Day is Sunday, May 19. It’s a morning affair followed by a potluck lunch around the campfire. Among other projects, we’ll be planting potatoes!
Either way, you’ll be sure to satisfy your two-hour work commitment as part of your CSA membership.
Author Dan Dagget has written that remedying the planet’s environmental degradation is a process, not a one-time simple fix. That is also true of organic farming. Our processes take time; we don’t look for overnight results. The process of growing the healthiest, freshest, most delicious food has just begun for 2013.
Tony and Barclay