120 Sussex Street Jersey City, NJ 07302 Google Map downtownharvestcsajc@gmail.com
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Weekly Updates

Welcome to the blog.
Posted 10/31/2018 10:40am by Katia Lampe.

Pickup for this large optional share will be on TUESDAY November 20 from 5:30 to 8:00pm.

This will be a “stock up” share and will include various vegetables that store well, so that you will be able to enjoy produce from the farm well into the winter months as well as provide veggies for your Thanksgiving feast. The delivery will be one day earlier than your normal pickup day.

 This will be a “stock up” share and will include various vegetables that store well, so that you will be able to enjoy produce from the farm well into the winter months as well as provide veggies for your Thanksgiving feast.

The delivery will be one day earlier than your normal pickup day.

 

The total weight of this share will be about 60 lbs. Approximately a third of the share will be winter squash- butternut, acorn, buttercup (kabocha), delicata, and sweet dumpling squash. The share will also include an assortment of root vegetables such as carrots, beets, parsnips, turnips, rutabaga and radishes.  We will also be including Jerusalem artichokes aka sunchokes and another tuberous member of the sunflower family-yacon (pronounced jacone). It is sweet and juicy with a light orange color (carotene) and is similar to jicama. It can be grated raw into salads or cooked in stir fries for a water chestnut like crunch. The root crops will comprise about 15 lbs. of the share. There will also be about 15 lbs. of potatoes and onions in the share. The potatoes will include some fingerlings and an assortment of other varieties of potatoes. Also included will be green and red cabbage, and whatever greens we still have in the field at this time, such as arugula, broccoli raab or other mustard greens, kale, lettuce and spinach. It is probable that there will be broccoli and/or cauliflower and there will certainly be Brussels sprouts. The potatoes, onions and squash can be stored in a cool dry place such as an attached garage or enclosed porch, where they will not freeze. The root vegetables, greens and cabbage will best be stored in your refrigerator.

The cost of this final share will be $90*, which is an excellent value, equivalent to a wholesale price for the produce included. I know that this final share will not work for everyone, but I hope that many of you will be able to participate. Doing so will help us to make use of the produce that we have in storage and utilize what remains in the fields. Normally the proceeds from the stock up share enable us to go into the winter months with money in the bank to pay the bills in January and February.  This year however has been a financial disaster and the best we can hope for is to pay off most of the debt that has been incurred in the course of the season.

Farmer John

 

*Sign-up and payment will be done at the pickup site each Wednesday until November 14.  Checks are preferred (payable to Circle Brook Farm).  Checks can also be mailed to Downtown Harvest CSA c/o OLC, 120 Sussex St, Jersey City NJ.  Stock up share payments must be received by November 14. If the name of the member is different from the name on the check, please write the member name in the memo section of the check.  If you want both the Stock Up share and eggs, a single check for both is best.

Posted 10/31/2018 10:16am by Katia Lampe.

We will again be offering a winter egg share to our CSA members at slightly reduced prices. The deliveries will be made every other week on Wednesdays, starting the week after Thanksgiving.

This season will be 14 deliveries, so price will be:

  • 1 dozen every two weeks = $70,
  • 2 dozen every two weeks = $126,
  • 3 dozen every two weeks = $182
  • additional dozens @ + $4/ dozen/ every two weeks

Prices will be $5/1dozen, $9/ 2 dozen and $13/ 3 dozen.

 
The delivery schedule will be as follows:

11/28, 12/12, 12/26, 1/9, 1/23, 2/6, 2/20, 3/6, 3/20, 4/3, 4/17, 5/1, 5/15, 5/29.

 

I hope you will consider participating and help support the farm through the lean winter months. The hens continue to lay and we need to keep feeding them and caring for them- a substantial expense.

 

Thanks, Farmer John

 

*Sign-up and payment will be done at the pickup site each Wednesday. Checks are preferred (payable to Circle Brook Farm).  Checks can also be mailed to Downtown Harvest CSA c/o OLC, 120 Sussex St, Jersey City NJ. If the name of the member is different from the name on the check, please write the member name in the memo section of the check.  If you want both the Stock Up share and eggs, a single check for both is best.

Posted 8/25/2018 2:53pm by Jeff Schrimmer.

Downtown Harvest CSA is well into its 14th year of bringing healthy New Jersey food to our urban community.  Despite the unusual weather this summer, Farmer John has come through once again with generous quantities of high quality organic produce and eggs from pasture-raised free-range hens.

Farmer John Krueger of Circle Brook Farm in Andover, NJ can supply more food, so we can still enroll new members!

The fee for a Full Share each Wednesday until November 14 is $30.00 multiplied by the number of Wednesdays remaining until and including November 14.

The fee for a pre-bagged “more than generous” Half Share each Wednesday until November 14 is $18.00 multiplied by the number of Wednesdays remaining until and including November 14.

Enrollment for eggs is currently closed for the remainder of the season.  

Members are also asked to pay a $25 administration fee to Downtown Harvest CSA.  We are a 100% volunteer group that is separate from the farm, and money for our expenses comes solely from the administration fee.

Click on this link to go straight to the enrollment page! http://www.downtownharvest.org/members/types  

Note: New members will not be asked to pay at the time of enrollment, and the initial payment instructions may contain incorrect fees.  The proper discount for missed weeks will be calculated, and new instructions with revised (lower) fees will be e-mailed.

Please contact us if you have any questions: csa@downtownharvest.org

Posted 7/30/2018 7:07pm by Judy Crane.

Hello Folks,  

“And the rain let up, and the sun came up, while we were getting dry”- Van Morrison.    So it was a challenging week but it could have been worse. So I guess I’ll forego my usual whining about the weather. I won’t even mention how many inches of rain we got (6).  The fields have mostly dried out and on Sunday I was able to work some ground. This afternoon I am going out to plant some seeds while my crew tries to get caught up on the transplanting work.    

The melons have begun to ripen and last week a few lucky folks received watermelon as a surprise.  We will be starting to ship watermelon, cantaloupe and other melons in rotation during the next five or so weeks. August is melon month!  

It should be tomato month as well- if only they would start ripening!

The plants are healthy so far and are loaded with green fruit. I expect we will have enough to ship some out to you by next week.  Soon we will have red and yellow peppers too, as well as another sweet treat (I don’t want to give up all my surprises). The share for this week will be: Garlic, lettuce, squash, cukes, peppers, eggplant, rainbow carrots, beans, either broccoli, cauliflower or red cabbage, choice of an herb and probably melon. There will be tomatillos as an “extra”. Premium shares will include a second lettuce and kale.

Enjoy!   

Farmer John

Posted 7/16/2018 7:27pm by Judy Crane.

Hi Everyone,

We received a bit of rain this past Sunday morning, about a half an inch. We need more and it seems we have a shot at some precipitation tomorrow. We have begun harvesting the garlic but we broke the under cutter blade that we use to loosen the ground for easier pulling. When the soil gets dry it also gets very hard.  We should have the parts to fix it in a few days and hopefully with a good rain and softer ground we can proceed with the harvest. 

As promised, eggplant and peppers are beginning. We should have enough for a pepper or two for everyone; the eggplant will likely be in a 2 week rotation. We are still trying to get some more peas out to everyone but hot and dry is not what pea plants like. 

The beans are beginning as well, so there will be peas for some and peas for others.  Broccoli is also still in rotation, with red cabbage as the alternative.  Cukes and zukes are abundant but greens are starting to get scarce.  We also have some nice carrots for you!

The share for this week will be: Kale, carrots, lettuce, eggplant for some, peppers, broccoli or red cabbage, summer squash, cucumbers, either peas or beans and choice of an herb (dill, parsley or cilantro). Our shares will also include chard and choice of radicchio or dandelion greens.

Enjoy!   Farmer John   

Posted 7/16/2018 7:26pm by Judy Crane.

Hello Folks,

So it’s hot and it’s dry but that’s what it’s like in July!  At least temps have moderated a bit from last week’s brutal onslaught. We did get about a quarter an inch of rain from some passing storms but they mostly went around us. I was hoping for more; what we got was okay for watering some recently planted seeds but not the deep soaking that the roots of the crops need. So we will be moving the sprinklers around.  There’s not much chance of precipitation in the forecast for the next week but that could change.

 

Cucumbers are coming in heavy now and peppers and eggplant are starting up as well.  A few groups may get some of the latter this week. We have finally managed to get everyone some peas and so we are starting in on a new rotation this week. We will probably still not have enough for everyone this week but hopefully by next round. Broccoli is also coming in heavier now.  We also have some more fresh onions with tops for you- red this time.

The share for this week will be:  Swiss chard, lettuce, choice of arugula or tatsoi, summer squash, salad turnips, cucumbers, red onions, either broccoli or green cabbage, possibly peas or peppers and choice of dill or cilantro.  We will also receive kale, kohlrabi and choice of fennel, sage, marjoram or savory. 

Enjoy! 
Farmer John

Posted 7/16/2018 7:24pm by Judy Crane.

Hi Folks,

 As Cole Porter wrote and Ella Fitzgerald beautifully sang- It’s too darn hot!  “I’d like to sup with my baby tonight, refill the cup with my baby tonight, but it’s too darn hot”.   I guess the worst is over –for now.  The temps will gradually moderate as we go through the week and we have a couple of good shots at some rain. We did receive some of the wet stuff last Wednesday night which was fortunate because the moist soil has helped the crops to bear the heat. 

The summer crops like the tomatoes, peppers, squash and melons accept the heat with aplomb but it’s hard on the lettuces, peas and the brassicas. Many thanks to the hardy volunteers who braved this sweltering weather for nearly 3 hours on Sunday to help pick peas.  The peas are coming in a bit heavier now so if you haven’t had any yet this should be your week!   Spinach is on it’s way out (it hates the heat more than I do!) and is being replace by it’s more adaptable cousin- Swiss chard. Cucumbers are becoming more abundant so some of you may receive a few this week and others the next.  We have some nice basil for you but unfortunately no tomatoes to go with it just yet.  Peppers and eggplant will start soon.

The share for this week will be: lettuce, choice of arugula or tatsoi, either salad turnips or beets, summer squash, kale, either broccoli or Napa cabbage, choice of spinach or Swiss chard, basil and peas/cukes for some. Shares will also include a second head of lettuce, choice of radicchio or dandelion greens and choice of an herb. 

Enjoy!  
Farmer John

Posted 7/16/2018 7:22pm by Judy Crane.

Hello Everyone,

So I guess I should have known better than to have believed the weatherman.  I postponed the farm visit based on a forecast of rain and thunderstorm through most of the weekend.  We received virtually no precipitation except for a few moments of drizzle and two brief showers; both of which occurred when I ventured out on my seeding tractor to try and get some planting done. In a way this was a double whammy because we were counting on a good rain to help germinate the thousands of row feet of seeds that were planted during the week. 

As I previously noted we are also hoping for rain to help the many crops planted on bare ground that do not have the benefit of drip irrigation.  We are now riding the tractor slowly over the rows dribbling water from a water tank onto the marks left by the seeder and moving sprinklers around frequently.  I go out at midnight to close one valve and open another. The well pump is running around the clock!  Rain is forecast for Thursday; let’s hope they’re right this time.

 We have a nice crop of radishes at the moment so we are holding off on the turnip/beet rotation we began last week until the next round because with the heat and dryness the radishes won’t hold.

We are coming to the end of the spring spinach crop so this week we will offer it as a choice with Swiss chard.  There is still a paucity of peas and we are struggling to get some to groups that have been shorted thus far.  I expect more abundant harvests soon.  Broccoli is poised to head up in great quantities soon but for now we will start a rotation with Napa Cabbage. Late week groups are more likely to see some broccoli.

The share for this week will be:  Lettuce, radishes, summer squash, Napa cabbage or broccoli, kale, choice of spinach or chard, possibly peas, choice of arugula or tatsoi and choice of an herb (cilantro, dill or parsley). Premium shares will include daikon, fennel and choice of a second herb.

Enjoy!  
Farmer John
 

Posted 6/11/2018 8:35pm by Judy Crane.

Hello Everyone,

I am happy to report that the weather has been uncharacteristically cooperative this past week. The temperatures have been moderate and we have had several nice gentle overnight rains. I think that there are few people other than farmers who can find such joy in a nice rain; perhaps an Englishman away from home and missing his native climate. Despite a late and difficult beginning to the season things are coming along well here at the farm.

We have mostly caught up with our planting and almost all of the crops are growing nicely. The first planting of peas came up poorly and did not grow well after that; a consequence of the cool,wet conditions. Conventional farmers plant with fungicide treated seed but the second and third sowings have fared better. We began picking peas today and we will have enough for some but not all groups this week. We will begin a rotation over the next week or two until everyone has had some. After that I expect there will peas all around (my wish for the world) after that for a few weeks.

The beans are up and growing and should be ready to take over in the legume slot when the peas peter out. We normally have garlic scapes for the first delivery but even they are running behind schedule; just another of those things we have no control over! Next week! So it’s mostly greens and herbs to get started with for this week. The lettuce is beautiful, the spinach is nice and the arugula is as fiery as a hot pepper. You can chop up a little and mix into salad if you’re brave enough, but I recommend braising or sautéing it to mitigate the heat a bit. There are radishes as well, which can also have their spiciness tempered by cooking (perhaps in a stir fry with the bok choy you will receive).


The share for this week will be: lettuce, radishes, spinach, bok choy, possibly peas and choice of herbs (garlic chives, oregano, parsley, chervil and mint). Premium members will also receive arugula and escarole or endive (frissee)

Posted 6/6/2018 3:47pm by Jeff Schrimmer.

Hello members,

We are getting excited about our first delivery date of the 2018 season. Farmer John has informed us that the start date will be June 13th due to the weather conditions he has been experiencing.

We are moving our pick up location to Sussex and Van Vorst Streets. It is two blocks from our original location of 120 Sussex Street and once we are settled in, we will inform you of the exact address prior to the first delivery.

Save the date for our annual farm day the weekend of June 23rd and 24th - more details to follow.

Thank you,
Downtown Harvest CSA Core Group
Jeff, Maria, Phil and Judy

And now a word from Farmer John....

Hi Folks,
I hope you had a pleasant Memorial Day weekend. I apologize that I have not been able to get a farm update out to you until now. It has been a very difficult spring for us here at the farm. I am sure that most of you noticed that winter hung around well into April this year. We still had snow flurries flying on April 13! As a result we were unable to begin planting until Mid- April; about 2 weeks later that normal for some crops. In addition the cold soil caused poor emergence in some of the early direct seeded crops such as peas. We worked diligently to get caught up with our spring planting and had largely succeeded. We were then a bit behind on setting out some of the warm weather crops. We were getting caught up on these when we had a week of rain, including a strong storm which ripped the plastic off one of our high tunnel greenhouses and knocked power out for three days! We are now back on track and continue to work hard to ensure a bountiful season.

Unfortunately the delayed start and slow plant growth we experienced has caused delayed maturity of most of the early crops. We simply will not have a sufficient number of items to make a delivery worthwhile at present. The original plan was to start deliveries during the week of June 3rd, next week. We will have to postpone the start of the season until the following week, June 10th. Farming is an endeavor replete with challenges and setbacks. In so many ways we are at the mercy of the weather. As veteran members know, we do not give up. We roll with the punches and keep moving ahead. In 15 years of CSA farming this is the first time I have needed to delay the start of the season and it is very disconcerting for me to do so. The early shares are always somewhat small and we will do our best to make up for the missed week during the rest of the season. I thank you for your patience and understanding.

The Farm visit will be held on Saturday, June 23 with Sunday June 24th as a rain date or for those who cannot make it on Saturday. Save the date! I will have more info out about this event and other opportunities to visit the farm and help out as a volunteer in the near future.

Best, Farmer John

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Downtown Harvest CSA is well into its 14th year of bringing healthy New Jersey food to our urban community.  Despite the unusual weather this summer, Farmer John has come through once again with

Have a question?
2018 Enrollment