Published on April 4th, 2013 | by admin0
Community Supported Agriculture
CSA Membership www.illinoisseed.com Flatt Farms www.flattfarms.com Asia Seeds www.asiaseeds.com
Vegetable Share Program
Full Share = 1 box each week during season = 20 boxes
Half Share = 1 box every other week during season = 10 boxes
Quarter Share = 1 box each month during season = 5 boxes
We offer Main Season and Asian vegetable shares. The Main Season is 20 weeks and runs June until first half of October. The Asian season also runs from June until October but includes only Asian vegetables. You can choose to pick up vegetables every week (Full Share), every other week (Half Share), or once per month (Quarter Share).
As A Vegetable Shareholder, I Agree To…
As a vegetable shareholder, you must agree to eat seasonally. Weather and other natural occurrences greatly affect the variety and quantity of produce that fills your share each week. You will receive vegetables, greens, and herbs you may not have tried in the past. This will certainly broaden your culinary horizons but you must be willing to try these new things and eat foods you normally do not purchase at the store. As a vegetable shareholder, you must agree to make the best use of the food you receive even if it is not what you expected that week. We are at the mercy of the weather. It can delay or damage crops or produce an absolute bounty. It can encourage certain pests or keep them to a minimum. It can produce the most perfect fall days or send us running for cover in a wind damaging summer thunderstorm. As a vegetable shareholder, you agree to roll with the season and accept the food provided.
How much quantity and variety will I receive in a vegetable box?
Our weekly boxes average 1/4 bushel (13 Lbs., but can range from 10-15 Lbs.) and we aim for no less than 6 items in each box. Variety depends on time of the season and we choose what goes in the box each week. Flexibility is very important as you will most likely receive vegetables you have never prepared or eaten before. Early boxes contain lots of greens, radishes, green onions, cabbage and broccoli. By July and August, you will see tomatoes, peppers, beans, okra, fresh basil, summer squash and more. Early Asian vegetable shares will contain Asian greens, daikon radish, bunching onions, pak choi, tat soi, and snow pea. Later season shares will include eggplant, tomatoes, hot peppers, yard long beans, okra, thai sweet basil, lemon basil, holy basil, squash, melons and more. Quantity is for fresh eating from week to week. It is not our intention to provide enough to can or freeze although in a bountiful growing season, that may be an option.
I Don’t Like Beets. Can I Customize My Vegetable Box Each Week?
No. It would be way too complicated to customize each shareholders box. The idea behind the CSA is to eat seasonally and that means taking from the garden what is plentiful, ripe, and ready for harvest. So often we hear customers say how they didn’t like a particular vegetable UNTIL they tried it from our farm. Eating something truly fresh makes a world of difference. So you may find yourself eating those wonderful beets after all.
When Do the Main Season Vegetable Shares Begin and End?
The Main Season is the first week of June until the middle of October for a total of 20 weeks. Full Vegetable Shares receive a total of 20 vegetable boxes. Half shares receive a total of 10 CSA boxes. Quarter Shares receive a total of 5 CSA boxes
When Should I Expect The First Tomato?
Remember, you are eating seasonally and not from the grocery store. The first tomatoes will not arrive until the beginning of July – at the earliest! June boxes will be dominated by gorgeous greens, lettuces, radishes, kohlrabi, turnips, broccoli, cabbage, baby beets, green onions, and sugar snap peas – all early cool weather loving vegetables.
End of June and July bring on carrots, beets, cucumbers, summer squash, cherry tomatoes, peppers, green beans and fresh basil.
By August, tomatoes are a mainstay in the box along with green beans, eggplant, peppers, and zucchini. Late August through September the garden is in full swing. Almost all crops can be harvested at this point. Sunny fall days help with the harvest of winter squash and onions.
Frost typically arrives the first or second week of October. Gone are the warm season crops like fresh basil, cucumbers, and peppers. A few tomatoes may survive a light frost in one of our hoophouses but most of the tomato crop will not survive the cold. Boxes will once again be filled with greens, lettuces, radishes, and new crops like winter squash.
Unless you produce your own vegetables, eating seasonally through our CSA program is the healthiest, freshest, tastiest, BEST food you can eat.
Do You Provide A Newsletter? Recipes?
Each share includes a newsletter. It will give you a little farm news, a list of vegetables in the box, a recipe and/or other tips. The newsletter will also include various recipes that go along with the vegetables. As a vegetable shareholder, you must agree to bear some of the burden of learning about your food including storage tips, recipes, etc. There is plenty of information available if you take the time to seek it out. Being a part of a CSA means not only knowing where your food comes from but also how to best take advantage of the food provided.
What Vegetables and Herbs Do You Grow?
Some crops may not be successful and if you purchase a half share, you may not see all these vegetables in your boxes since you will miss half of the deliveries. Many crops will be repeated several weeks including lettuce, tomatoes, peppers, onions, potatoes and summer squash. But some you will only see a few times like kale, eggplant and cabbage.
Where Can I Pick Up My Vegetable Share?
Pick up for regular and Asian vegetable shares will take place at our farm every Saturday from 2pm-7pm.
Shipping to home is included with your membership.
What If I Need to Miss My Pickup of Vegetables?
You need to notify us at least one day before we deliver your food that you are canceling. Once the food is packed, it is your responsibility to pick it up. We do not replace food that has been packed but not picked up. If, however, you notify us ahead of time and the food is not delivered, you do have the option of making it up in another week. Or, you can have a friend pick up while you are away.
What Does It Cost?
2011 Main Season
Full Share, 20 weeks, June – October, $999 (Includes Shipping)
Half Share, 10 weeks, June – October, $549 (Includes Shipping)
Quarter Share, 5 weeks, June – October, $299 (Includes Shipping)
How Do I Sign Up?
Shares for vegetables are available until sold out. Shares can be purchased online or by sending payment directly to Illinois Seed website and placing the order through PayPal. Please fill in all the information required on the CSA sign-up page.
Weekly Box Examples
It’s very helpful to see actual examples of boxes we have provided in the past. Keep in mind that you receive a box every week so it’s important to enjoy your food on a daily basis so you’re ready for the next one.
Slicing Tomatoes – Red and Yellow
Red Cherry Tomatoes