Newsletter

July 6, 2017

June certainly flew past! I am already collecting seeds from chives, ^ yarrow and miscellaneous brassicas. It is difficult to remember that we were shivering only weeks ago. Our thermometer says it is 101.5 degrees F as I write.^

More news about our revised business plan

I already sell my garlic in Portland. I intend to sell “certified organic” vegetable seeds, dried herb teas, dried herbs, and home-kitchen jams from my farm stand and on line. Because removing moisture is “processing,” I need to wait until Oregon Tilth can inspect my kitchen and process records before I can label dried items as organic. My inspection is not scheduled until August 19th ...yikes! I am hoping I can get them to approve my labels before the inspection to save time.

Eggs

As some of you know, the chickens have been playing games withM me...or maybe the abrupt weather changes have been tricking them? The chickens may be stabilizing. They are laying a few eggs again! Eggs are available by special order, to pick up at our farm stand or for us to deliver. I usually deliver in La Grande on Tuesdays. Eggs are still at sale price $3.50 for one dozen large or $3.50 for eighteen small.

Hay

Our first cutting of certified organic alfalfa hay is available. With the heavy rain, the grasses and weeds got a little head start on the alfalfa. There is even a little cheat grass, but it was cut before it turned red, so it is still palatable. The alfalfa was cut just as the blooms were opening, so it is high in protein. Because it isn't pure alfalfa, we are selling at half price, $95 per ton, or $3.50 per small two-twine bale...not a bad deal!

Additional Availability

Raspberries

My variety of raspberries has been on my farm for at least 100 years. I call my variety “Dora Belle Hutchinson Heritage Raspberries.” The variety has no shelf-life, but the berries are juicy and delicious. I either make jam immediately or I rinse, mash and freeze the berries the day they are picked. I am selling 3 ½ cups (28 fluid oz.) of frozen mashed raspberries for $10.00. They must be special ordered from me. Community Merchants cannot sell them because I am not certified by Oregon Department of Agriculture for Good Agricultural Practices, required of frozen products. The raspberries are certified organic.

Cherries

Available after July 7th...my Bing cherry tree has been on the farm all of my life, so it is at least 70 years old and still producing. My cherries are not certified organic, they are only “chemical-free.” So here is the story: My chickens receive their daily scratch under the cherry tree...they consume cherry fruit flies emerging from the soil to get at the cherries...I do not need to spray cherries with anything...sounds organic doesn't it? Now that the USDA has acquired the word “organic” and written the rules, nothing can be certified organic if there is raw manure beneath it. Chickens under the tree leave raw manure. Believe me, if a cherry drops on the ground, the chickens get it. I sell my chemical-free fresh Bing cherries in bags weighing approximately one pound for $5.50. They are available at Community Merchants or as special order from me.

Horseradish Greens

Horseradish root is harvested after hard frost in late fall, winter or early spring. When horseradish root is not available, horseradish greens are available. Raw, they can be chopped and added to olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper for a delightful spicy summer condiment for meat, fish, cheese entrées. Or they can be cooked as, or with, any other green. When cooked, they are not spicy but do have a pleasant taste. Available at Community Merchants or special order from me, $3 per bag.

Cocktail Onions

Available next week, fresh certified organic top setting onion bulbs from heritage Eqyptian Walking Onions. These little onions are wonderful peeled and pickled, or creamed as a side dish...or plant a few in your garden. Mesh bags containing approximately one pound will be available at Community Merchants and as special orders for $3.00 per bag.

Yarrow

Fresh certified organic wild Oregon native for tea or to dry, available at Community Merchants or special order from me, $3 per bag.

Catnip

Fresh certified organic for tea, orfor cat, available at Community Merchants or special order from me, $3 per bag.

Sage

Fresh certified organic, available at Community Merchants or special order from me, $1.50per small bag.

Rosemary

Fresh certified organic, available at Community Merchants or special order from me, $1.50per small bag.

Mint

Fresh certified organic, available at Community Merchants or special order from me, $1.50per small bag.