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CSA Fail?

charlieg Jul 13, 2009 05:50 PM

We have been Land's Sake CSA clients for several years and were shocked to get an email today telling us that there will be no share at all this week! They blame the weather and also some management issues. I know that there was a lot of staff turnover in the off season this past year. The shares thus far this summer have been fairly good sized, lots of greens but we don't mind that. This epic fail was a big surprise.

Is anyone else running into shortages or delivery fails for other CSA this summer?

  1. p
    pierce Jul 13, 2009 08:37 PM

    This is my fourth year with Parker Farm and the yield has average-ish, though the last two weeks have seen a boom of beans. Definitely more rain complications than last summer, it has been very similar to 2006 so far (wet and dark) but i seem to remember much less non-greens by this point that summer, though it is probably due in large part to different planting strategies

    1. t
      tsackton Jul 14, 2009 01:42 PM

      I'm a member of the Enterprise Farm CSA, and haven't noticed it to be particularly sparse - heavy on the greens, yes, but we've also started to get squash and beans and beets and garlic scapes, and hopefully corn this week.

      The produce at both the Davis Square and Harvard University farmer's markets has generally seemed pretty bountiful to me this season so far, especially in the past few weeks as we've moved past the greens stage.

      1 Reply
      1. re: tsackton
        yarm Jul 14, 2009 01:48 PM

        My garden looks like its still time-locked in mid-June of other years (although some of the plants like my chili peppers and herbs are growing quite well). With all of the rain and lack of sun, plants were losing the battle to insects which can damage the plant more than it can grow.

      2. p
        pastrytroll Jul 14, 2009 02:51 PM

        First Light Farm, north of Boston, skipped one delivery. That was the week we had severe thunderstorms every day, and the fields were flooded. Other than that, though, we've been getting some lovely stuff: even zucchini and cukes and chinese cabbage.

        I think microclimates have a lot to do with the yield, and that this is the second summer in a row with awful weather. This year, my backyard vegetables don't look like they've grown any in the past month. A friend about half a mile away has terrific looking plants (no tomatoes set, though, and they should be by now). Last year I had thriving veggies, and his were spindly and pathetic. Gardening in New England can be a real challenge!

        2 Replies
        1. re: pastrytroll
          powella Jul 15, 2009 01:55 PM

          Stillman's CSA so far has been fine. Same size share that I recall from years past, and no skipped weeks yet. I have no idea how they are doing it since my garden is also looking mid-June-ish.

          1. re: powella
            abrox Aug 24, 2009 01:41 PM

            First year with Stillman's and we have been very happy with their share. A very nice variety as well.

        2. c
          charlieg Jul 20, 2009 06:37 PM

          An update: Land's Sake is now reporting a total crop failure with no shares until the fall and offering partial refunds. They are partially blaming the weather (although, as responses to my original post show, this hasn't crushed other farms), partially poor planning. There has been a staff reshuffle. Looks like a total washout, which is a real shame.

          3 Replies
          1. re: charlieg
            Paladin5 Jul 20, 2009 07:17 PM

            Ouch, sorry to hear that.

            1. re: charlieg
              djd Jul 20, 2009 09:55 PM

              WHOA. I've had farm shares from a total of... I think four different farms over eight years, and I've never heard of this.

              Red Fire's been smaller some weeks than in 2006–7. (I was w/ Parker last year.)

              1. re: charlieg
                ponyboy Jul 21, 2009 06:44 AM

                Just went to the Land's Sake site. $650/year!!! I am so sad for the CSA members. I would think most of the members will be taking their business elsewhere next season.

              2. c
                chowmel Jul 27, 2009 09:35 AM

                Waltham Fields announced today their CSA will have no tomatoes this year due to the blight. I'll miss the tomatoes , but overall the staff has done an excellent job providing good sized shares each week during a very difficult season.

                4 Replies
                1. re: chowmel
                  Bob Dobalina Jul 27, 2009 12:21 PM

                  I don't doubt you, but how did you come by this information? I am also a shareholder and did not receive anything via e-mail. This is of course very disappointing to say the least.

                  1. re: Bob Dobalina
                    Christie Jul 27, 2009 01:11 PM

                    I received the same information in the Sunday newsletter yesterday...very sad indeed...

                    1. re: Bob Dobalina
                      chowmel Jul 27, 2009 05:25 PM

                      Sorry, it was the weekly newsletter, not a separate email. My understanding is that it doesn't matter if you started your own plants or not. If the spores (?) are in the area and then in air any plant is susceptible.

                      1. re: chowmel
                        Karl S Jul 28, 2009 02:45 AM

                        Yes, that's why the agricultural extension folks have asked home gardeners who experience blight to destroy their plants, to avoid contamination of commercial crops. Of course, most home gardeners are still unaware of this problem.

                  2. galleygirl Jul 28, 2009 08:58 AM

                    This article about late blight and tomatoes... :(

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: galleygirl
                      djd Sep 9, 2009 07:05 AM

                      Patrick wants to declare most of the state "a disaster zone for agricultural production losses." http://www.boston.com/news/local/mass...

                    2. a
                      autopi Sep 22, 2009 09:53 AM

                      Just got word that Parker Farms CSA is cancelling all remaining CSA distributions for the season. http://www.facebook.com/pages/Parker-...

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: autopi
                        soxchik Sep 24, 2009 07:00 AM

                        The Parker Farm large shares will begin again next week, and small shares will be on a sign-up basis with two more for the season. More details are at the link above.

                      2. d
                        djd Sep 23, 2009 06:07 PM

                        Red Fire this year has been noticeably sparser than before. Aaaaaagggh.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: djd
                          kparke30 Sep 24, 2009 06:29 AM

                          West Newbury CSA aka Long Hill has been quite good this year, of course heavy on the greens & roots due to weather, really no tomatoes in share (but have been available for sale....). Fall squashes began making their appearance last week & PYO (part of share) has remained viable all season. No indication of a short season, I'll keep my fingers crossed!

                        2. p
                          pastrytroll Sep 24, 2009 08:44 AM

                          More impressed with First Light Farm in Hamilton with about a month to go. The variety of eggplants, peppers and potatoes has been impressive. Last week we got (another) picture perfect head of bok choy. The delicata and now the winter squash are starting to come. I split a share, and have had trouble keeping up with the quantity.

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