Week #8

  • • Potatoes
  • • Lettuce (choose three different heads!)
  • • Chinese broccoli
  • • Sugar Snap peas
  • • Chard or Kale
  • • Carrots – “Nelson”
  • • Garlic curls: this is the flower of the garlic, delicious sauted!
  • • Green onions
  • • Kohlrabi
  • Cabbage or broccoli or cauliflower
  • Radishes


The battle of the weeds is on. They are getting the best of us for sure. But looking back at previous “week #8” notes this is not uncommon. This is the time of year we feel we will never get the farm back under control, and that is probably true. Our time is divided between harvesting, planting, seeding and WEEDING. We could have an army of weeders and probably not get the upper hand.

The rain was good and bad. We definitely needed the rain, but not the third rainiest May in recorded history! Many of the early crops are thriving (kale in particular), but the warm weather crops we hurriedly got into the ground during the heat wave of early May are in suspended animation. The tomatoes are spindly, yellow leaved and pinched. The peppers have curled in their leaves. The cucurbits (squash and cucumbers) are yellow and exposed to our arch enemy, the cucumber beetles. Luckily we have years of farming to look back on and see that this is what happens in early June.

Our experience has helped us plan for the unexpected and plant the same crops in different environments. We have tomatoes and peppers and cucumbers inside the hoop house. They are looking much better, but also need tending. Tomatoes need pruning and tying up so that when they bare fruit they hold it off the ground. The peppers need heat and water (not too much and not too little). You might think we can control this, but we have many balls to keep in the air and sometimes the water, on automatic pilot is too much.

We will need extra help the week of June 14 – 23 as the full time farmer and Diego and Luna will be off for a short trip to eat mangos and bask in the warmth of Honduras. They leave for 10 days to visit family and I will be left to tend the farm with our oldest son Jacob. It is a hard time to have Juvencio gone, but so important that he see his father and the rest of the family. I am sad not to be going but we could not figure out how to keep the farm running during midseason if we both left. We will have three harvests while they are gone, June 16, 19 and 23; all of them with PEAS. June 23rd I will be alone as Jacob will have taken off for his summer month in Alaska. If you have the time or just want to get your hands in the dirt we would love to have your help. We will start at 0730 and finish when the work is done. Without Juvencio the washing and preparing of the vegetables will go much slower so there will be extra jobs that don’t involve harvesting that will be helpful.

The coyotes continue to consume our animals. We lost 2 more lambs, almost full grown, in a small “safer” pasture. This may be the last year with sheep and lamb. There is just no way to make this work if we lose 8 and raise 4! Anyone have some guard donkeys or special dogs to loan us? The llamas have not been enough, small fenced pastures are not enough, locking them at night is not enough. What a frustrating and heart breaking business. We also have a resident skunk who is eating the chickens, chicken food, eggs and ducklings, on our property with three of our own “watch” or should I say “sleep” dogs! So our farm is completely perfumed by skunk and he/she is still on the loose.

Off to see who has survived the night, count the cabbages and harvest the peas. . .


Stir-Fried Kohlrabi

The Goodness of Potatoes and Root Vegetables

3 kohlrabi, peeled

3 medium carrots

4 tablespoons peanut or safflower oil

3 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced

1 inch piece gingerroot, peeled and thinly sliced

3 green onions, sliced

1-2 fresh chili peppers, sliced, optional


4 tablespoons oyster sauce (optional)

3 teaspoons sesame oil & soy sauce, each

Slice kohlrabi and carrots into thin ovals. Heat oil in large heavy skillet; when it begins to smoke, toss in garlic and ginger. Stir once then add kohlrabi and carrots; toss and cook 2 minutes. Add green onions and chilies; stir-fry 1 minute, then pour in ½ cup water. Cover, reduce heat and cook 5 minutes. Remove cover and toss in a little salt and the sesame and soy, and oyster if using. Serve with rice.

Kohlrabi Pickle Chips from the Victory Garden Cookbook

1-2 pounds smallish kohlrabi, trimmed

3 small onions

1/4 cup pickling salt

2 cups vinegar

2/3 cup sugar

1 Tablespoon mustard seeds

1 teaspoon celery seeds

1/4 teaspoon tumeric

Peel and thinly slice kohlrabi and onions. Mix salt with 1 quart ice water, pour over the vegetables, and soak for 3 hours. Drain, rinse, and place in a bowl. Bring remaining ingredients to a boil, cook for 3 minutes, and pour over the vegetables. Cool, cover and refrigerate for 3 days

Kale and Lentil Soup

(Marilyn’s invention from Sue)

3 T EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)

1 onion and 1 rib of celery (chopped and sauté for 4 minutes)

6-7 cups of water

2 cups chicken broth

1 ½ cups green lentils (rinsed and checked)

1 bay leaf

¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes

½ – 1 # kale (washed and sliced)

12 oz. Kielbasa (slice in 1” rounds)

16 oz. plum tomatoes

2 teaspoons red wine vinegar

Salt and pepper to taste

Sauté onion and celery for 4 minutes. Add water and chicken broth as well as lentils to the sauté mix. Add the bay leaf and red pepper flakes and bring to a boil. Decrease heat to a simmer for 30 minutes. Then add the Kale, kielbasa sausage, tomatoes and red wine vinegar. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook 15 minutes more and serve. Great the next day.

Easy Pasta with Greens & Garlic Scapes

Posted by Carole Koch

1/3 pound penne or farfalle pasta

2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil

1 small onion, diced

2 or 3 garlic scapes, chopped

1/2 pound kale, Swiss chard, and/or turnip leaves, chopped

salt and pepper to taste

Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large
skillet over medium heat, add the onions and garlic scapes, and cook until
tender. Add the greens and saute until wilted. Drain pasta and combine it with
the vegetables. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately.

Serves 2.

Fried Garlic Scapes

Posted by Carole Koch

Cut scapes into green bean size pieces. Sauté them in butter and a little salt for
six to eight minutes, or until tender but still bright green. During the last
minute of cooking add a splash of balsamic vinegar to taste. Serve hot.

Chicken With Garlic Scapes & Capers

Posted by Carole Koch

Thanks to contributing editor Lauren White for sharing this recipe!

2 whole skinless boneless chicken breasts, each cut in half

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

4 tablespoons dry white wine

2 tablespoons lemon juice

4 chopped garlic scapes

1 tablespoons drained capers
Between sheets of plastic wrap slightly flatten chicken. In a large heavy skillet heat
1 tablespoon of the butter and the oil over medium high heat.Sauté
chicken until cooked through. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer chicken to
a platter and keep warm.Pourfat from skillet and add the wine, lemon juice, scapes and remaining butter.Bring to a boil, stir in capers, add salt and pepper to taste. Spoon sauce over chicken. Serves 4.






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