CSA Newsletter 7

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In your box this week you’ll find a black radish called a Spanish radish or Nero Tondo. Nero Tondo translates literally to round black. The radish traces back to 16th century Europe. The Spanish brought radishes to Mexico and in Oaxaca they celebrate the Night of the Radishes or the Noche de los Rábanos. It takes place on December 23 and is a part of the Christmas celebrations. The locals carve figures into radishes and display them in the town square.

Radishes are full of nutrients. They have fiber, Riboflavin, Vitamin B6, Calcium, Magnesium, Copper and Manganese, Vitamin C, folate and potassium (as much as bananas!). It is also detoxifying and contains antioxidants.

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Buttery Nero Tondo Radishes
Adapted from Organic Farm

Ingredients:

Radishes, sliced

Butter or olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation:

Heat the butter or oil in a pan.  Add the radishes and sautee for just a few minutes, until the radish slices begin to turn a bit translucent.  Season with salt and pepper.  Enjoy as a sweet and salty snack or as a side dish.

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Lemon Parsley Salad Dressing

 

Ingredients:

1/4 of a preserved lemon, peel only (optional)

1/2 cup fresh parsley leaves, minced

2 – 3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice

1 tsp. finely grated lemon zest

1 small clove garlic, minced (optional)

1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1/4 tsp. dry mustard

Preparation:

If you have some preserved lemons on hand, take 1/4 of one, rinse off the pulp, and mince the peel. Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl or put them in a jar and shake to blend. Taste and adjust salt and pepper to taste. If the dressing is too zingy for you, feel free to add more olive oil to soften the flavor. A bit more salt will help temper the acid, too. Use immediately or store, covered and chilled, up to 1 week (olive oil will solidify in the refrigerator but will melt quite quickly at room temperature again).

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Dijon Aioli Roasted Veggies

Adapted from Kilpatrick Family Farm

Ingredients:


2 cup diced nero tondo radishes

2 cups diced potatoes

2 cups diced carrots

1 bunch of kale

2 cloves of garlic

1 spring onion

3 tbs dijon mustard

3 tbs lemonaise (regular mayo will do)

2 tbs capers

1/4 cup olive oil

salt & fresh pepper to taste

Preparation:

In a large bowl, whisk mayo, dijon, capers, salt and pepper until blended. Add diced vegetables and toss until coated with aioli. Spread evenly over roasting pan or 1 to 2 cookie sheets. I like to add a little more salt and pepper at this point. Roast for 40 minutes at 450˚, turning vegetables halfway through. Makes about 6 servings.

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CSA Newsletter Number 6

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Rains at the end of June and super hot weather in the beginning of July have made for an even weedier field. So we’ve been weeding a lot. Weeding weeds with long tap roots and spikey leaves like thistle and weeds you can eat with omega-3 fatty acids like purslane. A weed is any plant you don’t want growing where it’s growing but weeds can help a farmer as well. They help by indicating your soil type (horsetail for example shows you have acidic soil) and they can help improve and condition soil (the long, strong tap root of a burdock plant helps break up heavy soils). At Vibrant Valley Farm we don’t use pesticides or herbicides to kill weeds. We either pull them by hand, use a walk behind tractor to harrow and cut them down or we use a hula hoe, which is also known as a stirrup hoe. A hula hoe has a double edge blade that forms a stirrup and connects to a long handle. Weeds are cut and killed right below the soil surface by moving the stirrup back and forth. Weeding creates a healthier habitat by aerating soil, disturbing pests and distributing moisture. The plants we want are able to thrive. Liz Milazzo, a farmer at the CASFS program in Santa Cruz, says that plants shine once you weed them.

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This week’s box :

 Carrots

Broccoli

Kale

Chard

Watermelon radishes

Silky Salad Mix

Summer Squash

Parsley

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Moroccan Carrot Salad with Parsley and Roasted Lemon

Adapted from the Food Network’s website

 

Ingredients:

1 large lemon, washed, sliced into thin rounds, and then quartered

¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin

¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon ground ginger

2 pinches cayenne pepper

½ teaspoon orange zest, plus ¼ cup orange juice

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

6 carrots, peeled and grated

¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts

Preparation:

 Place lemon pieces in a cold skillet. Add a generous amount of oil to cover the bottom of the pan and heat over low heat until the rinds soften and begin to brown and caramelize, about 20 minutes.

In a large bowl, add the cumin, cinnamon, ginger, cayenne, orange zest, orange juice, salt and pepper. While whisking, pour ¼ cup olive oil. Add carrots, parsley and pine nuts. Remove the caramelized lemon to the bowl using a slotted spoon. Toss and taste for seasoning. Drizzle in some lemon infused oil to taste.

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Kale and Summer Squash Toasts

Adapted from Food and Wine

 

Ingredients:

2 small squash, peeled, halved lengthwise and sliced crosswise, ½ inch thick

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing

Salt and freshly ground pepper

1      bunch of kale, thick stems and ribs discarded, leaves coarsely chopped

4      garlic cloves, thinly sliced

Eight 1/2-inch-thick slices of peasant bread

4 ounces shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese (1 1/2 loose cups)

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 350°. In a medium bowl, toss the squash with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Spread the squash on a baking sheet and roast for about 30 minutes, turning once, until tender and lightly browned.

In a large skillet, heat the remaining 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the kale and cook until it is wilted, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic slices and cook until the kale is tender, about 3 minutes longer. Season the kale with salt and pepper. Add the squash and toss gently to combine.

Heat a cast-iron grill pan. Brush the bread with olive oil and grill over high heat, turning once, until toasted. Mound the squash and kale on the toasts, top with the shaved cheese and serve.

 Your Brain on Kale

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Thank you to Mary Ellen Rice, our friend and co-worker, who took a lot of these photos. Follow her on instagram @merrrr29 and check out the #vibrantvalleyfarm

CSA Newsletter #5

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As the weather warms (it was 97 degrees today!) and literally tons of vegetables and flowers grow, an entire new ecosystem is being brought to life on the farm. A symphony of insects are constantly buzzing, crawling and reproducing all around us. Some of these creatures are welcome and some are cursed. Beneficial insects, like ladybugs, have shown up to help us control our pests, like aphids, naturally. Aphids, also known as plant lice, reproduce rapidly and can even give birth to already pregnant young. They are some of the most destructive insects on the planet. Aphids suck the sap out of plants weakening and deforming them, making it super hard for plants to photosynthesize and survive. They can also transmit viruses while feeding off the plant. Ladybugs or ladybirds and their larvae eat aphids and can munch down 50 to 500 aphids per day! We try to create habitat for our beneficial insects by planting a variety of plants they can feed off of and get shelter from like yarrow and sunflowers.

Here is a video we took on the farm of two ladybugs getting down:

 

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Roasted Beets and Greens

Adapted from Allrecipes.com

Ingredients:

    1 bunch beets with greens
1/4 cup olive oil, divided
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped onion
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (175 degrees C). Wash the beets thoroughly, leaving the skins on, and remove the greens. Rinse greens, removing any large stems, and set aside. Place the beets in a small baking dish or roasting pan, and toss with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. If you wish to peel the beets, it is easier to do so once they have been roasted.

Cover, and bake for 45 to 60 minutes, or until a knife can slide easily through the largest beet.

When the roasted beets are almost done, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a skillet over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and onion, and cook for a minute. Tear the beet greens into 2 to 3 inch pieces, and add them to the skillet. Cook and stir until greens are wilted and tender. Season with salt and pepper. Serve the greens as is, and the roasted beets sliced with either red-wine vinegar, or butter and salt and pepper.

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Fennel and Mint Salad

Adapted from James Beard Foundation

Ingredients:

2 bulbs fennel, fronds removed
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 2 lemons
8 large mint leaves, finely shredded
2 ounces shaved Parmesan cheese
Salt and freshly cracked black pepper

Preparation:

Shave the fennel as thinly as possible, using a mandolin, a meat slicer, or by hand. Place the shaved fennel in a bowl and toss with lemon juice, olive oil, and salt and pepper. Divide the fennel among four small plates. Scatter some mint on top of each salad and garnish with shaved Parmesan.

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CSA Newsletter #4

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Such Singing in the Wild Branches 

It was spring
and finally I heard him
among the first leaves—
then I saw him clutching the limb

in an island of shade
with his red-brown feathers
all trim and neat for the new year.
First, I stood still

and thought of nothing.
Then I began to listen.
Then I was filled with gladness—
and that’s when it happened,

when I seemed to float,
to be, myself, a wing or a tree—
and I began to understand
what the bird was saying,

and the sands in the glass
stopped
for a pure white moment
while gravity sprinkled upward

like rain, rising,
and in fact
it became difficult to tell just what it was that was singing—
it was the thrush for sure, but it seemed

not a single thrush, but himself, and all his brothers,
and also the trees around them,
as well as the gliding, long-tailed clouds
in the perfectly blue sky— all, all of them

were singing.
And, of course, yes, so it seemed,
so was I.
Such soft and solemn and perfect music doesn’t last

for more than a few moments.
It’s one of those magical places wise people
like to talk about.
One of the things they say about it, that is true,

is that, once you’ve been there,
you’re there forever.
Listen, everyone has a chance.
Is it spring, is it morning?

Are there trees near you,
and does your own soul need comforting?
Quick, then— open the door and fly on your heavy feet; the song
may already be drifting away.

— Mary Oliver
Owls and Other Fantasies: Poems and Essays

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Simple Kohlrabi and Carrot Slaw

Adapted from Local Foods

Ingredients:

2 bulbs kohlrabi

4 carrots

3 Tbsp. vegetable oil

2 Tbsp. cider vinegar

1 Tbsp. whole grain or Dijon-style mustard

1/2 tsp. sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preparation:

Peel kohlrabi and carrots. Be sure to cut off all of the tough outer peel of the kohlrabi. Set them aside. In a salad bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar, mustard, and salt until well blended. Add pepper, if you like. Using the large holes on a standing grater or a mandoline set up for fine julienne, grate the kohlrabis and the carrots into the salad bowl. Toss everything together until the kohlrabi and carrot are evenly coated with the dressing. Taste and add more salt or pepper, if you’d like.

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Fresh Spring Onion Dressing

Adapted from Forever Fit

Ingredients:

Olive Oil

Braggs Apple cider vinegar

Spring Onion

2 cloves garlic

1 teaspoon grated ginger

Preparation:

Put equal quantities of oil and apple cider vinegar into a bowl

Chop spring onion, I used about 2 cm of a bunch chopped up.

Chop up garlic and ginger. Then either with a stick blender or blender whiz it all up until

smooth and lime green. Store in a sealed jar in fridge.

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Baked Kale Chips

Adapted from Allrecipes.com

Ingredients:

I bunch of Kale

Tablespoon of Sea Salt

Tablespoon of Olive Oil

Preparation:

Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line a non-insulate cookie sheet with parchment paper. With a knife or kitchen shears carefully remove the leaves from the thick stems and tear into bite size pieces. Wash and thoroughly dry kale with a salad spinner. Drizzle kale with olive oil and sprinkle with seasoning salt. Bake until the edges brown but are not burnt, 10 to 15 minutes.

 

CSA Newsletter Number 3

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This Saturday is Summer Solstice, which marks the beginning of summer and the longest day of the year. The word solstice is Latin and translates to sol (sun) and sistere (to stand still or stop). After this day the point where the sun appears to rise and set stops and begins a directional reverse. The days will only now get shorter as we move to the Fall Equinox.

There are many rituals and celebration to pay homage to this day. In ancient times, the solstice helped guide plantings and harvest of crops. In China, the summer solstice was a day to celebrate the Earth, and the yin or feminine forces. All over Europe tribes held bonfires in honor of the longest day of the year. In North America Native American tribes like the Sioux celebrated with dances. Their dance included fasting for the day and raising a tree to honor the connection between the Earth and the heavens and teepees in a circular form to represent the cosmos. In many parts of Finland and Sweden people dance around maypoles and homes are decorated with flower garlands, greenery, and tree branches.

Happy Solstice!

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Garlicky Collard Greens

Adapted from Vegetarian Times

Ingredients:

I Bunch of Collard Greens
2 tbsp. Olive Oil
An entire portion of a green garlic bulb (the white part)

Preparation:

Bring large pot of water to a boil. Add collard greens, and simmer 5 minutes. Drain. Heat olive oil in same pot over medium heat. Add garlic, and sauté 1 to 2 minutes, or until golden brown and fragrant. Add greens, and sauté 5 minutes, or until tender. Season with salt and pepper, and serve warm.
If you are interested in adding meat, pan fry bacon and add the garlic and greens, and proceed with the remainder of the recipe.

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Kale and Lentils with Tahini Sauce

Adapted from Real Simple

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons tahini (sesame paste)

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

2 tablespoons olive oil

kosher salt and black pepper

1 Bunch of Kale

1 15-ounce can lentils, rinsed

Preparation:

Whisk together the tahini, lemon juice, oil, 2 tablespoons water, ¾ teaspoon salt,
and ¼ teaspoon pepper. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the kale and ¼ cup water, covered, tossing occasionally, until tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Drain the kale and fold in the lentils. Serve with the tahini sauce.

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Roasted Broccoli with Garlic and Cayenne Peppers

Adapted from epicurious.com

Ingredients:
1 large Broccoli crown, cut into florets
3 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Half of a green garlic bulb, minced
Large pinch of dried crushed red pepper (this is a great time to process the cayenne peppers from week 2)

Preparation:

 Preheat oven to 450°F. Toss broccoli and 3 tablespoons oil in large bowl to coat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Transfer to rimmed baking sheet. Roast 15 minutes. Stir remaining 1/2 tablespoon oil, garlic, and red pepper in small bowl. Drizzle garlic mixture over broccoli; toss to coat. Roast until broccoli is beginning to brown, about 8 minutes longer. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

Add Feta for great flavor and a robust compliment!

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Transition

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 I have to admit that the spring transition happens very fast for a farmer. All at once the red winged blackbird and the yellow finch are back gliding to and fro. The killdeer defends its babies as it finds the best (or worst) location to nest and lay their eggs in the field. The copious amounts of emails to your inbox from seed companies are exhausting, and your list of things to do are a mile long and many won’t be finished until the following year. And lastly, the long days and warm evenings are initiation into a new year of tending to the mandala that makes up the field for a short period of time until it all goes back into the earth and we do it again.

 

You have to surrender your winter filled with time and quiet reflection, while escaping into the hustle of spring with building projects and rapid planting, and all at once summer approaches and you remember why you work so hard with such selfless poise- to bring food to other people to nourish their bodies and learn from the bounty. The beauty of trying new vegetables, cooking with friends, bbq-ing any and everything you can remove from the fridge, and as we do at Vibrant Valley Farm- eat handfuls of cilantro and parsley as we pass through the field to assure they do not flower before the next harvest.

There are so many ways to reflect and witness this experience and every year a new moment or experience links me back to this transition, and this year it is the length of the day. In the evenings as the sun goes down and the last rays have fallen behind the distant stand of Doug Fir trees and the last honey bee makes its way to its hive, there is a romantic feeling of purpose and joy.

Farming is an incredible experience and lifestyle. It is an old world existence, linking the pastoral livelihood of being outside tending to land in wide open fields with the privilege of providing fresh food to our community. Priviledge it is. We have chosen to spend countless hours assuring the crops are tended to with grace, all while eating the best food of our lives.

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Getting to know a three-acre space is exciting. We witness the changes in the suns position, the waxing and waning of the moon, all while deciding and pondering where and why a new planting will go and what needs to happen for its success.

I often think about the people whom have come before us and set the stage for our success as farmers. I think about my grandparents that tended to the fields in eastern Oregon picking watermelons in the summer heat. I think of the slaves in the south and the countless hours spent tending to land and picking cotton until their hands bled. I think of the other folks our age that are working each day as we are, to glean from the past while finding new ways to learn from the land.

Thank you for allowing us to walk the field and share the bounty that makes up Vibrant Valley Farm.

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Broccoli Rabe and Garlic
Adapted from Whole Foods

Ingredients

• 2 bunches broccoli rabe
• 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
• 4 medium garlic cloves, peeled and minced
• 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
• Freshly ground black pepper (optional)
• Sea salt, to taste

Preparation

Boil several quarts of water to boiling. Remove any tough or damaged outer leaves of broccoli rabe. Peel thick, lower stems from broccoli rabe. Tear broccoli rabe into large pieces.

When water is boiling, place broccoli rabe pieces in colander and pour boiling water over them to scald. Drain broccoli rabe well and set aside. Meanwhile, heat extra-virgin olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add garlic and crushed red pepper. Sauté garlic until browned. Add broccoli rabe to the pan and toss to coat with garlic/pepper mixture and heat through, around 2 to 3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper, if desired.

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Garlic Scape Pesto
Adapted from Epicurious

 Ingredients:

• 10 large garlic scopes
• 1/3 cup unsalted pistachios
• 1/3 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
• Kosher salt and black pepper
• 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Preparation:

Puree the garlic scapes, pistachios, Parmesan, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a food processor until very finely chopped. With the motor running, slowly pour the oil through the opening. Season the pesto with salt and pepper to taste. (The pesto keeps in the fridge, covered,

 You can also try preparing scapes in other ways like grilling them. Check out these seven recipes:

 http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2010/06/the-crisper-whisperer-what-to-do-with-garlic-scapes-recipe.html

 

 

 

 

 

Welcome to the CSA!

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Dear CSA members new and old,

Welcome to Vibrant Valley Farm’s Community Supported Agriculture program! It’s so nice to know that many of you have returned, told friends and most importantly have decided to trust us as your farmers. After months of planning, sowing, transplanting, prepping, weeding, thinning and everything in between we are so proud and excited to share the first of the season’s bounty with you.

For those of you who don’t know us we are, among other things, two landless city kids who decided to practice environmental stewardship through farming. We have been trained in both urban and rural farms and gardens in Argentina, Europe, California and Oregon and after years of dream weaving we created Vibrant Valley Farm. Last year, the farm’s first season, we plowed and planted into a field that we had never farmed before. And call us crazy but we’ve done it again.

We will still be growing garlic at the old place but we decided we needed more land and water so we found our new home west of McMinnville where we’re surrounded by rolling hills, the wind howls through the hole in the coastal cascades, buzzards fly over head and an 86 year old potato farmer tells us stories. Nearby are grass seed and hazelnut growers who give us an amazing opportunity to share knowledge and experience. The Crowes ran a dairy for many years on the site, which served the Portland metro area during the milk shortages around World War II. After that it was a nursery and grass seed farm. The space is three acres and is rapidly filling with vegetables and flowers, probably as we write this. We invite you to come visit us.

The CSA model is based on an idea from the 1960’s in Japan where families would enter into a teikei or partnership. The teikei system means “putting the farmers’ face on food” and embraces the producer-consumer partnership. There are ten principles, which include tenets like mutual assistance, deepening friendships, and learning among each group. We say this a lot at Vibrant Valley Farm but seriously, undoubtedly and wholeheartedly none of this would be possible without you. As we grow and harvest we will be continuously grateful for your support and hope to deepen friendships and learn from each other.

Thank you

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Cilantro Dressing

Adapted from Epicurious.com

 Ingredients:

1 1/4 cups (packed) coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
1 cup olive oil
5 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 green garlic head
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon minced seeded serrano chile

Preparation:

Combine all ingredients in processor. Blend until almost smooth. Season dressing with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; chill. Bring to room temperature; rewhisk before using.

This is wonderful as a dressing over our silky salad, used as a marnade, or added to 1 cup of yogurt as a dip for fresh vegetables like radish and raab. 

 

Arugula and Kale Salad with a lemon green garlic dressing

Adapted from Tastebook.com

Ingredients:

1 bunch of arugula

1/2 bunch of Kale

½ head of green garlic cloves of garlic

the juice of one whole lemon

a few tbls olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

strips of parmesan cheese

Preparation:

Whisk together garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper.

Add this dressing on top of arugula and kale (cut into skinny strips) and toss to coat and top with shaved parmesan cheese.

 

 

Happy Cesar Chavez Day!

 

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Today is Mexican American Cesar Chavez’s birthday and a day to remember farm worker’s rights and labor struggles. Chavez, a worker’s rights activist, led non-violent protests, union organizing efforts and helped create more just laws within American agriculture. A child of migrant farm workers, he was an eyewitness and victim of the injustices in labor and the food system.

One of the most successful strikes he led, the Salad Bowl strike, was the largest farm worker strike in the U.S. At its height, the strike encouraged more than 17 million Americans to boycott California grapes. The protest helped earn higher wages for grape and lettuce growers in the 1970’s and galvanized workers around the world. He led many other non-violent protests including hunger strikes saying, “Farm workers everywhere are angry and worried that we cannot win without violence. We have proved it before through persistence, hard work, faith and willingness to sacrifice. We can win and keep our own self-respect and build a great union that will secure the spirit of all people if we do it through a rededication and recommitment to the struggle for justice through nonviolence.”

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Find out more at:

 How Cesar Chavez Changed the World

Biography of Cesar Chavez

 

SIGN UP TODAY FOR YOUR CSA!

As we sow thousands of seeds, weed overwintered crops and prepare for a new season, we’re super excited to offer CSA shares filled with heirloom tomatoes, winter squash and so much more from June to October! They are going fast, so sign up now to receive a special deal!

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Duration of season: June 4th - Halloween

Cost: $675.00/ Share ($27.00/wk.)

Returning members: $650.00 before April 1st 
New Members: $675.00

Fit for a family of four. For folks that are not accommodating as many members, we found that sharing with friends, family and nearby neighbors is a great fit.

Please note, we prefer that you pay half now and half at the first drop off. We understand that it is difficult to pay at once and will work with anyone to come up with payments plans, etc. Send checks to P.O. Box 1201, Carlton, Oregon, 97111

Pick Up Locations:

Division Wines
3564 Southeast Division Street
Portland, OR 97202

Yoga Union
2043 Southeast 50th Avenue
Portland, OR 97215

Time:
Wednesday
4:30-6:30 p.m.

 

Spring Fling

Spring has a beautiful way of showing up all of a sudden. The sun’s rays feel different, the days slowly get longer, and the new growth on the evergreen trees burst with the brightest of green that really rocks my world! Once it is here, the unpredictability is comforting and annoying all in the same vein. The rain, the sun, the rain, some hail- a rainbow, new growth blossoming, more rain- mud, delicate limbs reaching through their trellis, baby birds squeaking out of their nest, a hoop house filled with new starts, and a little bit more rain. It is amazing! The essence of the unknown, of what is to come in the upcoming weeks, and the mystery of when and how a farmer will break the ground in the field to allow for the plants to grow in time.

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At Vibrant Valley Farm headquarters it has been a joy to start sowing seeds for the upcoming season. Currently Peppers and Tomatoes are on heating mats with Eggplant and other slow growing herbs like parsley and marjoram. Each year it is a pleasant surprise to see the little seedlings reach their green cotyledons (seed leaves) through the soil to photosynthesize and start their lives as little plants. Almost every year, I second guess if it will all work out and I question if they will grow, checking on them like a mother does her newborn. It is hard not to worry a bit, but like a child, they are eager to grow and mature and they do so with grace and some vigilant tending.

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The field up Meadow Lake Rd. is looking incredible (if i do say so myself)! The cover crop is vigorously growing, the garlic is doing better than imagined with its deep green blue leaves reaching towards the sky, the parsley is back at it in full swing for our culinary delight, spring pests are back and annoying as ever and the plants that didn’t make the cut through the winter storms, well- they are dead. No big deal though, we will do it all over again, we have many months to rebound from the winter’s relentless desolation.

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We are excited for another year and so far things are working out quite well. CSA’s are being purchased, crop planning is almost finished, and I leave for San Francisco (our sister city) this weekend to pick up Elaine and get back at it.

We look forward to sharing the harvest with you and thanks again to all of those that have supported us along the way! We are blessed to tend to the earth and learn form the land.

 A poem by William Blake (from Poetical Sketches, 1783) in celebration of spring!

To Spring

O thou with dewy locks, who lookest down
Through the clear windows of the morning, turn
Thine angel eyes upon our western isle,
Which in full choir hails thy approach, O Spring!

 The hills tell one another, and the listening
Valleys hear; all our longing eyes are turn’d
Up to thy bright pavilions: issue forth
And let thy holy feet visit our clime! 

Come o’er the eastern hills, and let our winds
Kiss thy perfumèd garments; let us taste
Thy morn and evening breath; scatter thy pearls
Upon our lovesick land that mourns for thee.

 O deck her forth with thy fair fingers; pour
Thy soft kisses on her bosom; and put
Thy golden crown upon her languish’d head,
Whose modest tresses are bound up for thee.

 

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