Monday, October 23, 2017

Letter from John Krueger (Week 20)

Hi Folks, 

So a week after our frost event we are seeing the damage that was caused. It seems bit strange but while the peppers and beans were not completely killed, we had damage to some crops that are usually quite hardy. Lettuce which is much tougher than one might think had quite a bit of tip burn as did the chard. Even the broccoli and the kale have some white spots on the leaves- a sign of frost damage. I’m guessing that it’s because the cold came somewhat suddenly and the plants did not have time to prepare. Plants adapt to cooler temperatures by producing compounds, primarily sugars that act as anti-freeze and protect their cells from rupturing. The rupture is the result of a strange property of water. All other materials contract as they get colder; and so does water at first; right down to 4 degrees and then it begins to expand. I remember arguing with my 7th-grade teacher about this fact. From what I had been learning about the properties of atoms it made no sense to me. He shut me up by sending me to the nurse’s office where there was a freezer to place a full bottle of water in it. The next day on finding the broken water bottle I was convinced! But I digress…

We have another nice share for you this week. We have a few more peppers for you (mostly green) and with these we bid farewell to the warm weather crops. Now that the sweet potato vines have been thoroughly blackened we have begun harvesting them in earnest. We have a tremendous crop and you will be enjoying them for many weeks to come (especially if you purchase the stock up* share! nudge nudge). We are sending spaghetti squash as the winter squash du jour (du semaine?) partly because people seem to like it and partly because we have a lot and it doesn’t keep well for us.

The share for this week will be: Peppers, potatoes, spinach, choice of arugula with either tatsoi or broccoli raab, cauliflower or cabbage, leeks, bok choy (purple), spaghetti squash, beets and sweet potatoes. Premium shares will also receive daikon and choice of endive or escarole.

Farmer John

*Details on Stock Up Share will be sent out soon.