Farm Journal 1/23/22

$30 order minimum for delivery into the city

Where to find our stuff! (and some root crops from Clarion River Organics) Place your online order here. Give us a 24 hours heads up please.

The Farm – WEDNESDAY (11 – 7). We’ll set your order out, you come pick it up. (If our driveway is treacherous, we’ll set up a table down by the purple garage).

Northside – Wednesday 12:30 – 1:00 at the parking lot on Union Place by Allegheny Commons. Ask about delivery options.

No limits for eggs this week. Don’t get greedy- but you can certainly order 2 or 3 dozen eggs this week, if you need them.

CSA Share Sales are Available!

We’ve made it through 2021 and are ready for 2022! Shares are now open and are at the 2021 prices until Feb 1 – when we’ll give them a bit of a goose and raise prices then.

You can buy basic weekly pickup and half shares at the farm, Northside Market, East Liberty Market, Squirrel Hill Market, and Mt Lebanon Uptown Market. Limited amounts of shares are available at the markets, as we only have so much room for hauling!

Pork is back in Stock!

Saturday we brought back a van load of our frozen pork from Cunninghams Meats. We sent 4 of our pigs off to be butchers a couple weeks ago and they are now ready. We’re well stocked in bacon, steaks, roasts (shoulder, loin and tenderloin) and the best marbled chops yet (boneless and bone in)! There’s plenty of sausages and ham roasts and slices too!

Pick up at the Northside or Farm (see the top of the newsletter for details).

Farm Update

I’m knee deep in seed catalogs right now. Fortunately, I stocked up on quite a few varieties back in the fall. Remembering last year, we were almost in a pickle as the availability of varieties was hampered by Covid. I don’t suppose this year will be much different.

Each year, I dabble in new spreadsheets – trying to attain efficiency and come up with a way to smoothly and accurately delegate field work to the crew. More and more Apps are being created with small scale farmers in mind – but I’m old-school enough that I find it hard to get into the habit of using my phone to dictate my life. Our headquarters are still centered around a calendar on the fridge! I’ll put a couple of weeks into the new spreadsheet and use it for the first part of the growing season. I’m pretty good about sticking to the plans, but as the season and the craziness ensues, I find that I revert to what’s in my head and my seasonal instincts. Not bad system for a two person operation, but as we take on more employees and share responsibilities….. we need more SOPs. So… that’s another winter task that we are working on; stream-lining the operation and translating our actions and reasons into a step by step process.

If we aren’t stuck inside looking at screens, we’re outside making more housing for the pigs; in constant pursuit of creating an indestructible shelter. We finally have ample supplies of wood chips, straw, and sawdust – so cozy bedding materials isn’t an issue. Our latest pig house is made from part of a cattle hay feeder, T-posts, pallets and tarps. Not fancy, but functional. It’s designed to be both shelter, back scratcher, shade and wind-break. It’s so nice, in fact that everyone is now vying for the porcine verandah. It’s not even a week old yet – so we’ll see how hardy our construction is …. but we’ll get back, reconfigure and redesign should the need arise!

First base layer of wood chips, then a cozy bed of straw to top it off!

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