NEXT WEEK will be the last delivery of the season! If you have any stray CSA boxes lying around, please be sure to bring them to the delivery site either this week or next please….the more boxes that come back to the farm, the less we need to purchase for the 2018 season. We really appreciate your help with this!
FILL YOUR PANTRY!
Today, November 10th, is the last day to pre-order for the Fill Your Pantry event which will happen on Sunday, November 19th. Click on this link to access the pre-ordering site: Fill Your Pantry Pre-Order
STRAWBERRY SPREAD AND TOMATO SAUCE!
The new Strawberry Spread is on the farm…if you have already ordered, I will be sending it out to you with your CSA share this week….if you would like to order, get in touch in the next week to have it brought with your last share next week! The cost for the Strawberry Spread is $4.50/jar and $50 for a case of 12 (10 oz jars). The cost for the Tomato Sauce is $7.50/jar and $85 for a case of 12 (24 oz jars).
WHAT’S IN YOUR SHARE THIS WEEK:
- Kale ~ Winter Bor
- Red Kuri Squash
- Festival Squash
- Green Butter Lettuce
- Brussels Sprouts or Cabbage
Welcome to the 4th week of the Late Season and your next to last share for the season! Next week will be your final share! It’s always a bittersweet time of year, and seems to have come so quickly. Many of the crew will be venturing off to do other seasonal activities, and our small “skeleton crew” will continue on through out the winter harvesting for wholesale orders, chopping and packing Burdock root, cleaning up the farm, and delving into projects. I’ll have a short break mid December and then begin preparing for the 2018 season! You can reserve your share for next year anytime…..
I have actually been off the farm since the end of last week, and most of this week, visiting my Father in Arizona, who has been having some health issues. It was nice to be in warmth and sunshine for a bit, see some spectacular sunsets, and sit sharing old
stories with my Dad. While there, my sister took me to one of her favorite places to eat. It’s called Joe’s Farm Grill. I was so impressed with it! It’s a very popular restaurant, and for Sunday brunch the line was out the door and down the sidewalk to the parking lot!
The Farm Grill is one aspect of the Agritopia Farm. The farm has a commercial operation, growing row crops, citrus and stone fruit, date palms, and olives. They also have a CSA program, and a seasonal farm stand, as well as a Community Garden, where the community can come and grow their own food. They certified organic in 2013.
Most of the food they serve in the extremely busy Farm Grill comes from the farm in season. The Farm Grill is the original Johnson family home, which has been updated
recently to make more space for indoor seating (it is Arizona after all!), but the outdoor original seating is still available and delightful. Situated under immense Tamarisk Trees,
picnic tables encourage folks to “share” their meals and the folks that frequent the establishment are diverse. It all started when the Johnston family bought the property in the early 1960’s. Jim Johnston, along with his wife, Virginia, built a home on the farm to
raise their three young boys, Joe, Steve, and Paul. They grew Pima cotton, durum wheat for pasta, barley, field corn, sugar beets, milo and alfalfa. Steve and Paul studied agriculture and followed their dad’s footsteps, eventually taking over the operation of
the farm. Joe became anengineer and worked in that field until starting a chain of coffeehouses in 1989 called “The Coffee Plantation”. As development moved closer to the family farm, it became increasingly clear that farming in the town of Gilbert might
become a thing of the past. The Johnston family remained steadfast in the stewardship of the land they loved so dearly. They worked with land planners, builders and the Town of Gilbert to create Agritopia, a community that preserved agriculture in an urban-relevant way, and village life with vibrant, connected neighborhoods, commerce, education and open spaces. The Farm at Agritopia was carved out of the original farm, destined to be a permanent expression of the joy and timelessness that is family.
In 2015, the Johnston family formed The Johnston Family Foundation for Urban Agriculture. The goals for the foundation are to keep a longstanding heritage of farming in perpetuity and to further demonstrate the importance of maintaining agriculture in an urban environment.
There is a facility there called Barnone, where skilled craftsmen make and sell their handcrafted goods. Also associated with the whole foundation is the Agritopia residential community. By the late 1990s, when the town of Gilbert’s rapid growth meant suburban development near the farm, the Johnstons began brainstorming ways to preserve their land. Joe’s engineering expertise helped plant the literal and figurative seed of Agritopia.
Collaborating with a land planner, landscape architects, the Town of Gilbert, and community developers, in 2000, Joe spearheaded the evolution of the family’s vision for their farmland: a present-day village that honors the farming traditions of the past. Today, all of the homes in the residential portion of the community have been built .The Johnston family still lives in Agritopia.
It was really fun to visit another farm, in another place, that is flourishing and spreading the lifestyle of organics & community living. If you ever visit Gilbert, AZ, I highly suggest you visit….be sure to call ahead to arrange a tour though…..I wish I had!
We hope you all have a wonderful holiday weekend and make delicious meals with your veggies & family this week!
Linda and all of your Winter Green Farmers