Full Shares: Salad Mix, Spinach, Kale bunch, and Hakurei Salad Turnips

Partial Shares: Salad MIx, Spinach, Baby Bok Choy, and Hakurei Salad Turnips

Hello CSA Members!

Welcome to Week #1 of your 18 week CSA!!! It has certainly been a challengingly cool and dry spring this year, but we need to roll with what Mother Nature offers up, and so it’s time to get the CSA started. We hope that you enjoy the journey through the Montana growing season, even if it is starting out a bit slow. We’ve been busy planting out in the field for over a month now, but the cool temps really have slowed the growth of most of our crops up to this point. Thank goodness for high tunnels!

Whether you are new to the CSA or a returning member, we welcome you back for the 15th season of our CSA. This season things are stripped down a bit logistically. Some of you may have read various past newsletters, but for those who have not, I’ll just summarize the most important parts.

  1. Every Monday, you will receive an email newsletter from us telling you about the CSA and other relevant farm news. Please add our contact to your email so that they do not go to spam or promotions folders. We will send the email to whatever email you entered in your account back when you signed up. If we are sending emails, but you are not receiving them, there is not much we can do to fix that from our side of things, so please check your account and update it if needed. I am a bit concerned by the simple fact that we have 254 members this season, but only 243 emails on file?
  2. Our CSA software, which you used to sign up for your share, allows you to log in and check on any CSA issues you might have. You can check your balance, your pickup location, or change your email simply by logging back into your account.
  3. This season you will be required to pick up your share at your designated pickup location within the designated hours. If you can’t make it, you need to find a friend or family member to pick it up for you during that period. We are no longer offering late or next day pickup, pickup location change requests, or vacation holds. While simplifying these rules will help reduce stress on the farm, they may take some getting used to for returning customers, so please try to enter a reminder or alarm in your phone to help you remember to come get your share during the designated hours. If you forget to pick up your share, you miss out on it.
  4. The 4 pickup locations for CSA this season are:
    1. The Farmers’ Stand – Wednesday between 3pm and 6pm. We will have our refrigerator truck parked in front, and farm staff on hand to help hand out the shares. Please bring reusable bags for us to unload your share into for ease of carrying. The staff at the store will no longer be involved with the shares. so please direct any questions or concerns to us at 2bearfarm@gmail.com.
    2. Glacier Shares – Friday at the Discovery Center in West Glacier between 11am and 6pm. Shares for St. Mary, East Glacier, and West Glacier will all be pre-bagged and sorted into each group, and each share will have a table with the members last name taped to the handle. Please verify you are taking the correct share.
    3. Two Bear Farm – Friday evening from 4pm-7pm in the first brown barn (follow the ornamental grasses). Same as in past years. Please bring a reusable bag.
    4. Kalispell Farmers Market – Saturday from 9am-12:30 at our market tent, same as last year. You do not need to wait in the market line…simply come to the back of the truck and alert one of us working the market that you would like to pickup a share. Please bring a reusable bag.

That’s about it for ground rules…nice and simple this season. For those of you new to CSA, we aim to provide you with a average value in each share each week throughout the season. However, our production is limited early on, and then really ramps up in July, August, and September, and so your shares will reflect that. In this first week, you will be receiving less than the average value, and only 4 items (as that’s all that’s ready right now), but future shares will increase in value and size, so that by the end of the season you will have received the full value of your CSA price. All of the veggies you receive are grown here at Two Bear Farm using Certified Organic practices and picked fresh.

If you are new to some of the vegetable you are receiving, we once again highly recommend Dishing up the Dirt as a great online resource for recipe ideas. Andrea, the author and fellow farmer, is way more creative in the kitchen than me. If you click on the veggies tab, all the recipes are sorted by the vegetable variety, which makes it really handy. This week you will all be receiving hakurei salad turnips. These are not grandma’s turnips, but rather a super sweet fresh eating turnip that can be eaten raw, roasted, or sautéed. And the greens are edible as well, and go great wilted into stir fry or soup. Given the theme of simplicity and getting back to the basics this season, the recipe for garlic and butter roasted turnips stands out to me as an easy first choice.

Thanks to signing up with us the season, and we’re excited to see you/meet you all at CSA pickup.