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The Weekly Weeder

August 17, 2017: Box #10
Weekly shares and Potato EOW Group
There is always something spectacular to find!
This garden spider strung her intricate web between two rows of eggplant.

Box Contents and Tips

It's a ratatouille box this week! 
  • Basil: 1 small bunch Smalls; 1 large bunch Standards; 2 large bunches Doubles  This is likely the last basil giving of the season. Store in warm place in the refrigerator.
  • Eggplant (Globe or Asian): 1 each Asian eggplant for Smalls and 1 each Glove eggplant for Standards; 2 each Globe eggplant for Doubles  Store in a warmer place of your refrigerator to avoid rubbery eggplant.
  • Fennel: 1 bulb Smalls; 1 bulbs Standards; 2 bulbs Doubles  All parts of the plant are edible.  Store in refrigerator in a plastic bag to keep from turning rubbery.  Here is a great way that shows you how to cut the bulb:
  • Garlic: 1 bulb Smalls; 1 bulbs Standards; 2 bulbs Doubles Now that the garlic is cured (dried), store on the counter and not in the refrigerator. Will keep for many months this way.
  • Melons, Cantaloupe: All small shares in Madison and Madison area sites except for WTS Paradigm (more for you next week!)    
  • Red Peppers: 3 each Smalls; 6 each Standards; 12 each Doubles. Try stuffed peppers - we like to fill halved peppers and find the red ones excellent.  Roasted red peppers over your gas stove or grill make wonderful additions to pizzas or a tomato sauce thanks to their flavor.  Store in refrigerator - we find they stay firm when inside a plastic bag in the crisper drawer.
  • Yellow Onion: 1 each Smalls, Standards and Doubles. Now that the onions are cured (dried), store on the counter and not in the refrigerator. These yellow onions are a standard cooking type and will keep for many months.
  • Sweet Corn!  4 each Smalls; 8 each Standards; 12 each Doubles. Another two varieties this week, one is smaller than the other, both are equally as sweet and tender.  Store in refrigerator until used. 
  • Farmhouse Cherry Mix Tomatoes: 1.5 pound Smalls; 3 pounds Standards; 6 pounds Doubles. Cherry tomatoes are peaking!  Remember our mix includes some ripe and some unripe.  The deeper the color and softer the feel, the riper and sweeter they'll be. Store at room temperature to help ripen any greener fruits. If you can't keep up with them, try roasting them in the oven at about 200-degrees with a good covering of olive oil and salt, you can even add garlic and basil.  Once roasted we like to blend it and put into freezer bags for our winter stews. 
  • Tomato Slicers: 2.5 pounds Smalls; 5 pounds Standards; 10 pounds each Doubles. Just the start!  The deeper the color and softer the feel, the riper they are. Store at room temperature. 
  • Zucchini, Gold OR Green:1 each Smalls; 2 each Standards; 3 each Doubles.  Store in a warmer place within your refrigerator.  Add to your tomato sauce or ratatouille. 
COMING SOON: Beets, Onions, Peppers, Tomatoes, Beans and more!
Imagine the aroma....
Feel the engergy...
taste the freshness...
come to the farm... visit your produce... your kale is lonely.
Picnic on the Farm - an event for CSA members
When: This coming Sunday August 27  Rain or shine!
Time: 10:30 am - 2 pm
Details: Follow your vegetables from the field (we'll take a tour on the wagon), into the packing shed for washing, and inside the cooler and dry room  You'll have the opportunity to visit the hay mow where the garlic is hanging, hold a baby chick and pet a chicken, sit on a tractor, and walk through the fields.   

Bring your own picnic with food and beverages (no glass please!), or money to purchase a homemade meal from us.  Please wear sensible walking shoes (closed toes recommended), strollers for the kids, and extra clothing layers in case it's windy.  Leave dogs at home please.

Food for purchase: We will be offering homemade pizza for sale, beverages and dessert bars.  Proceeds from our pizza fundraiser will be used for our barn flooring project.

Pizza Choices: pesto, red sauce with cheese, or red sauce with caramelized onions, roasted red peppers and eggplant.  Sorry, no meat or gluten-free options.

Pizza by the slice $2.50
Pizza Combo: one slice of pizza with side salads (pasta salad, tomato salad, black bean summer salad) and a beverage $5
Drinks $1
Dessert Bar $1

If you plan to purchase food, please RSVP so we can get a handle on how many crusts to make: (608) 675-3855 or
Peak Cherry Tomato Week!   
Those little black spots on the leaves are called Septoria Leaf Spot and is quickly spreading through our tomato patch.  While it won't affect the fruit, the plants are slowing melting down.  This is a common disease for tomatoes especially after heavy rainfall and humid weather (we've had both!)  But we'll have a few more weeks of picking despite the disease.

News From the Farm

Peak tomato season is always a bit intense.  It is intense because it's both a physical and mental challenge. The cherry tomatoes require lots of use of your "prayer bones" (knees!) while the slicing tomatoes require lots of use of our arm muscles because they are so heavy. 

Friday we logged 24 picking hours and Monday 32 picking hours, bringing in over 2,300 pounds!  We sold a few hundred pounds of cherry tomatoes, but most of what we grow goes directly to our CSA members.  We hope you'll enjoy the bounty!

Peppers have also taken many hours to pick, each plant touched three times a week and we have around 21,000 plants- that is a whole lot of touching!  Peppers take a special touch - sometimes they need force to remove their stem from a branch, while other times they are fragile and a light touch is all one needs.  But no matter what, the most important thing in pepper harvesting is a strong back!

We've had some wonderful gentle rains over the last week and the crops are standing perky again.  The kales are lush, ready for picking.  The next beans, broccoli and lettuces plantings look healthy and thriving.  Our newly seeded fall plantings of spinach, radishes, beets and turnips have germinated nicely in the cooler temperatures.  We welcome the cooler days for working and feel the coming of fall.  The air, wind and light are all changing. 

Come out to see the beauty of the changing season - this Sunday August 27 from 10:30 am - 2 pm.  We hope you and your family can join us! 

Eat well everyone and happy cooking,
Mat & Cate

Bulk Purchase Opportunities

Fill your freezer in bulk.....for those wishing to preserve larger quantities of produce!

Garlic - 5 pounds $30

Onions - 5 pounds $8 - Choose from Yellow or White (yellow are a very good storage type and white is a nice mild type that stores nice but not as long as yellow.)
Red Beets - 10 pounds $15 or 25 pounds $30
The roots store well in your refrigerator and are excellent for pickling or using for juice.

To place an order, contact us by Monday at noon by email or phone: or (608) 675-3855. 
Then mail your check, made out to Ridgeland Harvest, E5538 Nelson Road, Viroqua WI 54665.


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Member Handbook:  if you have questions about how to pickup your box the answers can probably be found in this document.  You can download it here:

Having someone else pickup your box?  make certain they take only the box with your name on the label.  When people take the wrong box it causes a chain reaction of trouble for many people.  The system is simple.  Look at the labels and take the correct box.  Please,  Please if you are having someone else pickup your box help them to understand this small but critical step.

Rescheduling Delivery:  We are happy to reschedule your boxes to allow you to travel and still reap the full reward of our CSA.  Please complete Delivery Change Request Form available on our website by Monday 8:00 am of the week you want to reschedule.

Need to have your share delivered to another site: we are happy to deliver switch your pickup site for you whether it is permanent or just one week.  Please complete Delivery Change Request Form available.
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