Friday, January 20, 2012

Registration is now open for the 2012 CSA Vegetable Baskets

This is our fourth year at Strattons Farm and our third year running the CSA, we are excited to announce that we will be expanding our CSA Vegetable box programme for the 2012 growing season.  The boxes will once again run for 18 weeks from Mid June to Mid October and we will be offering whole or half shares.

What is a CSA?
The CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) consists of a community of individuals who pledge support to a farm on an annual basis where the grower and shareholders share the risk and benefits of food production.  This then connects the shareholder to fresh, local, sustainably grown, herbicide, pesticide free food in their area.

Why join a CSA?

Keeps food local rather than it being picked unripe, then being gassed in a storage container to ripen while it travels thousands of kilometers to get to your table.

Stopping the large corporations taking over the food system. 

Learning to explore the delights of eating seasonally. 

Supporting a local farm helps to stimulate the local economy.

Giving you the security of knowing where your food has been grown and it has been grown in an environmentally sustainable way using as little fossil fuels as possible.

Having a relationship with the farmer that grows your food, rather than heading into a food store picking up food that has been handled by many hands, wrapped in plastic, that has already been cleaned and prepared for you and may have already spent several weeks sitting on a shelf.

New for 2012:  This year we will have an exchange basket if there is a vegetable that you don't particularly enjoy or you need some extra garlic you will be able to exchange one of your weekly items out with something else in the basket.  For example: For the kale lovers you could have more kale and for the  kale loathers you could exchange it for extra carrots or cabbage.

If you are interested in joining our garden, then please see the following link to read more about the programme and some of the feedback we have received from our members.  

Boxes are limited as our aim is to be able to manage everything here at the farm between Michael and I (with a lot of help from May & Lily) and also to produce high quality  naturally grown vegetables for you all.

If you would like more information or are interested in joining this years CSA then please either contact us at the farm and we can e-mail or post your brochure and application form to you.

Friday, January 6, 2012


The farm has slowed down over the last month as we just have the horses, pigs, goats and our egg laying chickens to care for.

With winter being here it allows us to catch up with all the paperwork, accounts and start planning for our fourth season here at Strattons.

Seed catalogues have arrived and the planning for the CSA Vegetable boxes has begun.  This is our third year running the CSA and we are excited about the vegetables we are growing and to see the garden expand.  
Planning the CSA does take a little bit of time.  We start by reviewing last years season and then we start by choosing what vegetables we want in the baskets each week, what type of vegetables we are able to get a head start on in the solar passive greenhouse, and then all the calculations start on the amount of seed we need to purchase, the bed lengths required for each crop we grow as well as creating a planting schedule to follow.    
This year Strattons Farm joined a CSA! We joined a seed CSA which is offered by High Mowing Organic Seeds.  As our customers support us through the CSA and receive 15-20% more vegetables than you would if you brought them at the farmers market we follow the same principle in purchasing our Organic seeds.

2012 is not only the year of the Dragon but is also the year for birth here at the farm!
In spring we are hoping for our first kids, as Elly,(standing in the background in the photo) is showing all the signs of being pregnant. We will also be breeding Ina and Nigella our Berkshire gilts and we hope to start the search for a suitable Suffolk Stallion for May and Lily.

Michael will also be enlarging our Apiary this year by making his own splits as well as purchasing a few more nucs.  Our aim is to have 10 hives at the farm but this will also mean making changes to our farm, by re-introducing the hedgerows that were removed before we came here and starting to grow more specific plants on our farm to feed the bees.  Of course this will mean that we will remain the lunatic farmers in our neighbourhood as other farmers remove their hedgerows.

I think it is easy to say that we are in for another exciting and busy year at the farm filled with new challenges!