Steve’s Weekly Update 9-28-12

Climatology 2012:  Comfortable days and cool nights are the rule as fall settles in.  At Mesa Top, the carrots are getting the terrific sweet flavor that only comes from cool mountain nights.  The late season brassicas, which love cool temperatures, are thriving also as the last pests are slowed by the cool nights.  The winter squash are curing in the field.  The pastures are pretty bare though,  Some moisture would be welcomed.

This week’s Cow stories:  Mesa Top cows and Jim Miller Ayrshire project:   The first of our core milk cow herd is showing signs of calving soon.  We have a group of 4 cows, all born in summer 2008, who are fall calvers and foundation of our cheese program.  They are having their third calfs this season.  4 others that are from their same calf family are the next in line, and then there is a large group of first calvers and another group of older cows who come along behind them.  These last two groups are all slated to move to Dominic Battista’s in Roswell to become the core herd for his dairy.  It’s almost moving time.

Other livestock news:  This year’s pullets are in the midst of a growth spurt and are coming into egg production rapidly.  They are the healthiest rascals we have raised at Mesa Top in my memory.  We have an excellent diet for them as we have plenty of top quality alfalfa already on hand, along with the wheat screenings from Melrose Wheat COOP, and the organic high protein and energy concentrate milled fresh for us at Embudo Valley Organics.  Egg production is strong and looks like it will stay that way as we move into winter.  Count on plenty of Beneficial Eggs for your holiday baking and other needs.

This week’s cheese making update:  the hiatus in cheese production is nearly over as we anticipate the beginning of fall caving.  We plan to add a commercial refrigerator to the cheese room in time for the resumption of cheese production.  We also continue our discussion with the Dairy Bureau about their proposed rule that legalizes herd shares in New Mexico.  We will keep you posted about the availability of additional products from the Dairy at MT.

This week’s Veggie/Share Update:  The emergence of fall is increasingly evident in the weekly share.  This week we have 4 crops from below the surface of the soil:  Sweet and tasty carrots from Schwebach Farms in Moriarty, beets from Synergia Ranch, and turnips with awesome greens from Talon de Gato Farm.

A special treat that we have from the squash family are hubbard squash from Gemini Farm.  Hubbard squash can grow to enormous size, like small jack-o-lantern pumpkins, and even though they are very tasty, have been a bit of a handful for a family to prepare.  Gemini has been selecting the seed of their tasty hubbards toward a more modest size with a meatier interior.  We are grateful to Gemini Farm for providing these tasty squash to our members every year.

We also have the bunched curly kale from Mesa Top, and cucumbers from Synergia Ranch.

From the fruit side we have Rancho La Jolla’s tasty fuji apples and d’anjou pears from Synergia Ranch.

Membership news:  Help us spread the word and sign up more members!  We add $10 to your Farm Account for every member you refer.  With the great variety of summer produce, and with a terrific fruit year here in New Mexico, this is the most exciting time in the CSA season!

Thank you for your investment in and continued support of the CSA .  We appreciate your support.

Steve Warshawer

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