Naturally Good News
New Terra Farm April 2007
Welcome to Sprinter! (i.e. spring-winter) We have several thousand transplants waiting in our light room and greenhouse, including onions, broccoli, cabbage, leeks, lettuce, cauliflower, celery, eggplant, peppers, tomatoes and a variety of herbs (its very nice to work in there on a cold day, surrounded by greenery, like a preview of summer to come.) Last year at this time we had half our ‘shady garden’ planted!
It’s been a cool, wet April so far, so it looks like the first garden plantings may be delayed by a few days (its ‘wet’ rather than ‘cool’ that prevents us tilling up new beds). This probably won’t affect first deliveries by too much, though; the little transplants usually ‘catch up’ when the weather warms up a bit.
We expect to begin transplanting the cold-hardy varieties into the garden soon; we have already put down some plastic mulch (re-usable) to help warm the soil, and we will install row cover to protect against further inclement weather and marauding insects. At the same time we hope to direct seed the first crops of carrots, beets, and greens into our cold frames.
- - Update - -
The garden is still wet in places, but we have planted out broccoli, cabbage, kale, beets, carrots, onions and lettuce so far. Things are proceeding well (but it would be nice if the nights warmed up a little)
Home Garden Tip
I know several of our CSA members also keep a home garden. Here’s a quick tip for earlier tomatoes: plant your transplants through red plastic mulch (e.g. like available at Lee Valley Tools), and wrap your tomato cages in clear plastics to protect against wind and provide a warmer ‘microclimate’. The red mulch and plastic wrap helps the tomatoes yield more and earlier (we re-use the plastic for several seasons before recycling). You can use an empty soup can to cut neat holes in the plastic for planting. This is what we do on the farm for our earliest tomatoes.
And, put a small handful of ground-up eggshell (from New Terra Farm free-range, all-natural eggs of course) in the hole before you put your tomatoes in; tomatoes like calcium, and this can help prevent blossom end rot. We keep eggshells in a 2-lb coffee can in the kitchen for this purpose.
At the time of writing, we have 10 lambs on the ground. All mothers did well, including the ‘surprise’ delivery on Easter weekend. We had to bottle-feed only one little ewe lamb for a while, and she is back with mommy. That is the end of lambing for this year.
Our Lac la Croix mare (Java) is doing well; we expect her foal in July. Last years foal, Shadow, (see an early picture on web site, the link is on the ‘New Terra Farm’ page) will soon be starting her training. Suzie will soon be teaching her to lead and getting her used to the saddle. More about the Lac la Croix pony, a Canadian Heritage breed, will be posted soon to new-terra-natural-food.com.
Special Note: The eggs are arriving BIG TIME! The hens have started producing the spring flush (those of you with e-mail know this), and we have started delivery. Looks like we still have a couple dozen available weekly so let me know if you (or a neighbour, maybe) want some fresh, free-range eggs ($3.50/dozen).
One thing you may notice with our eggs is, they are so fresh they are sometimes difficult to peel when hard-boiled. Unfortunately we don’t have a solution for this (unless you keep them for a couple weeks), but at least you know they are very fresh.
- - Update - -
A fellow CSA member (thanks, Janice) has just given us a tip re hardboiled eggs. When the eggs are done immediately drain them and fill the pot with cold water. Carefully (yes, they're hot) crack the egg shells by tapping them against the side of the pot or on the counter; then just leave them in the water until they are cool. Janice says the shells slip off easily every time. Cool!
A New Terra Farm 'low-ku'
Getting ducks in row
simple with technology
Nail gun, webfeet, done
Beef Box Orders
We are sending the first steer to the abattoir soon. We will be making up beef box orders of about 20-25 lbs. Each box will contain about half hamburger and stew, and half steaks and roasts (the premium cuts like rib, sirloin, porterhouse, top loin). Note that we ask the abattoir to hang the carcass for 14 days, to maximize tenderness and flavour; so if the steer goes in this week (April 16-20) it will be ready in about 3 weeks. This is the only beef we've eaten on the farm for the last couple years, and its very tasty.
All cuts are inspected, quick-frozen, and vacuum packed. Price for the box is $7.25/lb, delivered to your door. Total cost of the box will depend on the actual weight, but should be in the range of $150-170. I ask for a deposit of 75$ with your order, to cover the cost of transport and processing. I will bring an invoice for the balance when I deliver the box.
New Terra Farm Choice Meats
We will soon be starting the 2007 season for other meats as well. All our animals are raised in the fresh air, and are rotated to fresh pasture regularly. And all our animals are vegetarians; there are absolutely no animal by-products, growth hormones, or chemical supplements of any kind in our feed. Our pigs and chickens receive grain from a local certified organic farmer and scraps from our garden. The lambs are grass-fed and finished, making a nice lean carcass. All our meats are processed at provincially inspected abattoirs.
We believe pasture is better for the animal because they can exercise their natural instincts in an open environment that reduces disease, parasitism and contamination from waste. Sunshine and fresh air are as important to many animals as they are to people.
Price and Availability
Because our production is seasonal, not all of our meats are available all year. So we ask our customers to give us an idea of what they want through the year. We provide what we can right away, delivered to your door.
If the products are not yet available, we will call or e-mail when they are ready to set up a convenient time for delivery. All orders are filled on a first-come, first-served basis.
Please let us know your preferences as soon as possible, so that we may plan to meet requirements. E-mail is the best way to place an order, so that we have a record of your particular needs.
To assist you in ordering, the following list shows our purchase packages, and the estimated price for each package. The actual cost to you will be based on the weight of the package. NOTE: If you have a coupon, you can use it for these packages.
Pork Box – available from mid-July
Mixed box contains:
2-3 lbs bacon, smoked and sliced
2 hams or ham steaks, 6-8 lbs, smoked
5-6 lbs pure pork sausage, (your choice Italian, sage and savory, or farmers sausage)
4-5 lbs chops / roasts
20 lb Pork box @ 6.25/lb . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $125
Lamb – Available from early June
Whole lamb cut to order
43-47 lbs hanging weight @ 4.50 /lb . . . . . $210
1/2 lamb, 22-24 lbs cut to order . . . . . $130
if you have questions or need clarification on orders and availability.