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Radishes Make The World Go Round

Posted 4/20/2017 9:55am by David Zemelsky.

Dear Sustainable Food Lover and Friend of Star Light,

Its actually three separate words: Star Light Gardens.  Ty came up with the name and the concept of three distinct words.  I'll mash them together, myself when I'm in a hurry.  And if a customer refers to us (with fondness, I hope) as "Starlight"-I won't contradict.  If I remember, the idea was to put an emphasis on three really  important words. First , Star.  That's our sun, the beginning of all life. And then Light. That's what the star gives us. And warmth, too.  Gardens, next.  We actually wanted to be Star Light Farms, but when we went thru the LLC  paperwork, it was found that there already was one of those.  Hence, gardens.  Hopefully  the word gardens will give you a closer connection.  Not everyone has a farm, but lots of people can put in a garden.  And basically, that's what we did-only bigger than most.  I've always loved the name-its music to my ears.

On the farm (or should we say-"on the garden"?) this week, everything is popping.  By the end of last week, we were able to finally start getting beds outside ready.  My first order of business was a long bed of carrots.  After putting down compost, alfalfa (for nitrogen needs) and organic fertilizer, the whole bed was broadforked.  Broadforking is breaking up the subsoil with a large, two-handled tool with large, sturdy fingers on it.  The broadfork will break up the soil in large chunks, about 9 inches deep.  We'll go over that with hoes and cultivators , followed up a nice raking, which carrots love to get started in.  I'll keep a close eye on the bed, because we have one opportunity to flame the surface once to kill weeds (carrots hate weeds) before the carrots emerge.  I'll keep you posted.

Before the end of the day today, we'll have two long rows of beets, and two long rows of large glorious kale planted.  Not to mention, more salad greens and arugula. Which reminds me, if you like or love arugula, we've got an awesome crop this week.  Ask anyone who ordered last week.

A few weeks ago, we planted Roxanne radishes in the hoop house.  They are now ready.  These little guys are crunchy, crunchy, crunchy and not hot.  I could almost call them sweet (but I'd better not).  They also have very tasty greens on top that can be used in salads.

Last week, friends of some of you joined our mailing list on your suggestion.  To those of you who recommended us to your friends-a big thank you.  If you know someone who would love to experience locally grown food, please let them know about us.  Remind them to go on our website and request to be put on the general mailing list.  Website address: starlightgardensct.com

Store News.  Quick reminder (mostly, for new people).  When you know what you'd like, just email me back with your order.  Deadline (its moved, which most of you remembered) would be 10AM tomorrow-Friday.  Your order will be in the shed after 2PM.  Look for your name.  Payment jar is on the table.  If you come after dark-bring your flashlight!

Some plants to consider, first.  There are still about 6 unspoken for Hanging Strawberry Plants.  These make amazing Mother's Day presents.  The fruit is extremely sweet and they'll keep on producing all season.  The can be gotten whenever you want, but I plan to take care of the ones that have already been ordered till the Friday before Mother's Day (May 12th).

Compact Genevese Basil- $5/pot.  There's around 10 or so individual plants that can be divided up. Compact genevese is perfect for patio pots.  It has the same famous taste as Genevese but will not grow very tall.  For those of you who don't have an outdoor spot in a garden, they can do outstanding in a larger pot.

Flat leaf parsley- $5/pot.  Like genevese, flat leaf is the kind of basil that most chef's want to work with.  These work well in both larger pots and the garden.  Parsley can be kept from year to year.

Kale plants- $5/pot.  These will grow tall.  Probably best in a sunny garden spot, but would sustain itself in a very large pot, if you have one.

Dwarf Sunflower- $5/pot.  This is a nice alternative to the Hanging Strawberry.  The word here is "cute".  They can also be planted outside, but are very content to spend their days in a regular sized pot

Sun Gold and Black Cherry Plants- two of the most incredible cherry tomato plants ever grown.  Sun gold is bright orange fruit who's eating experience is similar to chumping on a lump of sugar.  Anyone with a quest for sweet will find themselves totally distracted by sun golds.  You might be upstairs in your house and if you remember how much you like sun golds, you'll find yourself traveling down the stairs and out the door to wherever you planted them before you even have a chance to think about it.  They're that good.  Black cherry is more like the sophisticated friend, who only talks in large sweeping sentences, which you can just barely understand.  There are first flavor, second, third and fourth even when you try black cherry.  If sun gold is like being in elementary school (simple, straightforward and uncomplicated) then black cherry is like graduate school. Complex and rewarding.   $5/plant.  It might be a tad early, but if you have a sunny indoor window, bring it home and get bonded.  They'll be with you for a while.

There'll be many more choices in the next few weeks.

Radishes- $3.50 a bunch

Arugula - for a spicy salad, arugula pesto or an impressive garnish $6/6oz bag

Claytonia- with white edible flowers.  Still succulant, and still near the end of the season.  Very wonderful, still.  We'll see what next week brings.  $4/4oz

Salad Greens- $6/6oz.  With kale, asian greens, lettuce, claytonia and spinach

Super Spinach Sale still lives.  $6 for everything that I fit in one bag.  Probably a lb or more.  Great taste, but not so pretty to look at.  Best for cooking

Red Russian Kale- $6/bag.  A salad, unto itself

New Spinach- unlike the Super Spinach, these are beautiful to look at. $6/6oz. bag

Braising Greens- 3 or 5 wonderful Asian Greens, along with kale.  $4/bunch

Here's a few photos to show you what I mean

These are the glorious braising greens.  The dark reds are spicy and the greener ones are more succulant

Garlic emerging from a thick, dense pile of leaves.  We'll be able to offer you spring garlic within the next few weeks.

New Spinach

Roxanne Radish. And they taste great , fun to eat!


 That's it.  Hope your week is wonderful!