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Farm news - June

Posted 6/10/2015 8:52am by Gregg Keckler.

Dear Folks,

  We are having a busy spring.  Juan picked over 8 banana boxes of both sugar snap and snow peas yesterday.  Today he, Oliver and Julie are transplanting young winter squash plants so that there will be those wonderful spaghetti squash, acorn squash and delicati squash in the fall.  It is ironic how we are always thinking one or even two seasons ahead, yet working manually in the current season.

  Virginia is picking asparagus.  We had mowed it off last week because the weeds were too high.  So we were not picking it for a bit. Now it is coming on again like gangbusters.  But the asparagus will only have until June 20, then its season is over until next year.  We will let it go to seed and by mid August it will look like a tropical fern jungle out there.  It is funny to watch the cats prowling through it in August looking for varmints.

I was chatting with a customer the other day at market and we were talking about kohlrabi and how to prepare it.  He mentioned that when he was a child his mother always made creamed turnips for special holidays - Thanksgiving and Christmas.  He remembered how he and his sister could hardly wait to eat the creamed turnips.  They were so sweet and so good.  He looked a little sheepish because who would look forward to creamed turnips unless you were starving! 

His daughters have tried to recreate the creamed turnips for him now, but he said that they just do not taste the same.  He wondered why that is - maybe the turnips are genetically engineered differently; maybe the cream is not as rich or the butter, or maybe no one can make them like his mother.

I got to thinking about it and I have come to the conclusion that emotion and experience have a lot to do with how we perceive food.  Why did things always taste better when we were kids or teenagers?  Maybe it was the fact that we were care-free and did not have the pressures (stress) on us.


It could be the varieties. It could be the slow cooking over a slow stove, but it could also have to do with what we eat now. 

Because we tend to eat a lot more sweet things - I mean really sweet with fructose sweetners- maybe the old sugar or honey just doesn't seem to taste the same, not but because the vegetables or fruits changed, but because WE changed.  We are more resistant to sweetness and now it takes a lot more sweetness for something to taste really sweet.

I challenge you to try something.  Try to avoid any artificial sweetners or high sugar content food for a week or even if you are up to the challenge for a month.  Then eat a sweet turnip or a sweet onion or a peach. Wow!  The taste will be amazing. 

The old saying " Just because you can , doesn't mean you should."  comes to mind.  Some times we must deliberately plan to avoid what is so readily available (and sweeter) in order to enjoy what is natural. 

Do not ever compare the natural with the man-made.

Don't worry I am not a stoic (yet:)!

We are hoping that you are having a great year. 

Remember the fruits and vegetables that you are eating NOW were planned last fall when the ground was prepared and in the winter when the seeds were purchased and started in the greenhouse and again in the spring when they were planted out in the fields and began to produce the delicious real vegetables that you love and are good for you.

Gregg, Louise and Oliver Keckler

Orchard Country Produce and Fruit Farm , Inc