It's hard to believe that we are entering into the first week of August next week. I'm usually able to tell because the Summer Crops are really starting to produce, the State Fair is being advertised, the Des Moines' Farmers' Market is packed with people before kids start going back to school, etc. Probably like a lot of you have noticed as well, this year none of these "signs of August" have happened. The Des Moines Farmers' Market has been closed. They are going to do an online ordering system with drive thru pickup starting in a week or two, but I am not going to participate in it and the State Fair isn't going to be happening.
Also, the Summer Crops are not in the abundance they would normally be in this time of year. Your tomatoes are full of flowers and we are starting to see the first signs of cherry tomatoes starting to form. There are eggplant forming and the first watermelon harvest will be starting shortly as you can see from the above photo! We've replanted Cucumbers and Summer Squash twice now do to insect pressure as the cucumber beetles and squash bugs have been more voracious than I've seen them in quite some time now. In talking with some farmer friends lately, many are experiencing the same things with bugs, disease, weather issues, etc. There are some that are able to buy produce in from other growers around Iowa when they can but there are definitely not the surpluses like we've all had in past seasons.
Best guess right now is that we will start doing the make up shares in mid/late August. I will make sure to let you know ahead of time and you can go in and switch the dates if you'd prefer. Things are starting to look up at the Farm!
This is definitely going to be a season I won't forget anytime soon. It's been a struggle in so many ways but we are trying to do the best we can to mitigate what we can change. Your support and words of encouragement haven't meant a lot to myself and I've shared them with the Farm Crew as well! Thank you!!!
Have a great week,
Farmer Ben and the Crew