Theme: winter break

News From the Farm | January 13, 2020

During the Full Belly winter break I visited Mexico with friends and we took a bit of a road trip between Puebla and Oaxaca. Oaxaca is an amazing center of both biological and cultural diversity.  During our drives along windy mountainous roads, avoiding major highways, we enjoyed vistas of subtropical cactus forests, and in the villages and towns we enjoyed the rich cuisine based on native plants. [Read more…]

News From the Farm | January 6, 2020


Happy New Year to all of our members!  The weather was mild during our break — cold, but no deep freeze events.  The rain that we had was gentle.  The cover crops look good — ready to jump up when warmer weather comes back.  We are looking forward to 2020 and hope that it brings health and beauty to our members.

News From the Farm | December 3, 2018

This is your last box of 2018!

Full Belly’s CSA project was started in 1992 and since then has been one of the mechanisms for connecting us with a community beyond the farm.  The fruits, flowers and vegetables in the CSA boxes deliver healthy and fresh nutrition to families within a hundred mile radius.  But sometimes I think of the boxes as something much more than that  — a subtle kind of inoculation perhaps…  At first, a member may think that it is just some healthy organic food that they signed up for.  Before long, if they stick with the relationship, they may find that there is a whole lot more to unpack from the green plastic boxes. [Read more…]

News From the Farm | December 4, 2017

Your CSA box this week is the last for 2017.  Our CSA deliveries will start again in the week of January 8th. Frankly, we hope that you really miss us — We are YOUR family farmers and your source of fresh, local, organic veggies.  We try to create a surprise, a challenge and an inspiration each week. Should we put leeks in the box?  Or maybe our members would rather see something different and unusual, like the tat soi… Should we put broccoli in again?  It’s a staple kind of crop — people know what to do with it, maybe they would like another week of broccoli?  We want to be the muse that inspires your daily meals!  These vegetables that we send you didn’t come from a faceless, nameless wholesale supplier, they didn’t come from a factory, they came direct from our fields, harvested by hand, by people that care, that show up at dawn every morning motivated by the challenge of keeping the crops healthy and by the beauty of stewarding the few acres of land that we are so lucky to call home.

During the next few weeks, there may be some deep cleaning in barns and offices, and there may be some crops that require harvest.  Certainly the pigs, cows, sheep and hens will get all the care that they need. There may be some meetings, planning and analysis of the year 2017. But the rhythm of marketing, harvest, packing and delivery is going to be on hold for a few weeks. Only a small crew will be on hand and with the cold short nights, the growth of most of the crops in the field will slow to a winter pace.   [Read more…]

News From the Farm | November 30, 2015

This may be the last letter to you, dear CSA patron, for 2015. We hope that you have had a positive experience this year as part of our farm. We have tried hard every week to have product in your boxes that we are proud of – reflecting our hard work and commitment to a healthy farm, while delivering freshness and great flavor. We understand perfection can be elusive. If we have missed the mark, we apologize, and we hope to do better next year.

Many of you have been through the cycles of a CSA season for quite a few years. There are many of you who fed your children our food as they were growing and they now make meals for their children with our farm goods. This is quite a rare thing in today’s economy – a multigenerational relationship with the source of ones diet. We have the same experience with many of our long-term farmers market customers. They have shopped from us for over 30 years and have watched our family grow, while each week we witnessed the same with their children. Many of those children have now grown and have children of their own. They come to the market to buy from our market-going kids! [Read more…]

News from the Farm | January 12, 2015

Full Belly Break

I have family in Japan, living in Chiba City, about 45 minutes from Tokyo (using the efficient trains). During the Full Belly break, my husband and I had the wonderful experience of spending 2-weeks traveling with family, visiting Kyoto on the main island, and also several places on the smaller islands of Naoshima, Shikoku and Kyushu.

When we travel, we like to try new foods and avoid “westernized” restaurants. In Japan, this can result in experiencing startlingly new and foreign textures and flavors. Slimy, crunchy and chewy textures abound. Meals are usually presented as lots of small plates, rather than one main dish with sides. It was not at all uncommon to have a meal presented to our group at an Inn, or at a home we were visiting, for us to have no idea what some of the dishes were. Perhaps some form of soy? Or fish? Or maybe egg? [Read more…]

News from the Farm | January 5, 2015

Happy New Year to all of our Full Belly Farm CSA members. We are happy to be back in action and ready to deliver your delicious boxes for 2015!

Here are a few notes from the field, observed over our break. 

At this time of year we usually have young plants growing in our greenhouses, prepared for transplanting to the field at a stage in their lives when they are less vulnerable to weed and weather pressures than if we grow them in the field from seed. This year, we have probably the largest set of transplants in the greenhouse (lettuce, broccoli, cabbage, greens etc) that we’ve ever had before. But December presented a challenging greenhouse window. Our climate is usually sunny even when it rains, but this year there were more than two weeks of very cloudy, cool, humid weather in December. This created the perfect conditions for rot and mildew diseases in the greenhouse that we have not typically had to deal with. With additional ventilation and care in watering, we were able to pull through and will be transplanting into the field in the next week or two. [Read more…]

News From the Farm | Week of January 6, 2014

Happy New Year!

Greetings from Umbria, Italy! A delegation of three Full Belly Farmers (Amon, Jenna & Rowan) travelled across the big ocean during this year’s winter vacation. The youngest member of our expedition, 16 months, has thrown himself into Italian cuisine with gusto, tasting truffles, tripe, salt cod, salumi of all kinds, and gelato.  Lots and lots of gelato. The Italian nonnas love him and wherever we go he gets scooped up and offered biscotti. The highlight of our stay has been connecting with other organic farmers. After lots of driving and searching, we finally found our tribe at a wonderful old farm called Torre Colombaia. The original buildings on the property were built by Benedictine monks in the 9th century. The monks originally intended to farm, but after a few years they decided to stick to praying and rented out the land to peasants.  The current owner, Alfredo inherited the 200 acre parcel. It has been in his family for four generations. He grows organic farro, chickpeas, durum wheat, and sunflowers, and he maintains the woods on the property, which are some of the oldest in Umbria. We were so thankful to land at this beautiful place. Rowan looked up at us as if to say “it’s about time!  No more churches and no more museums!” Finally a place to stretch his legs and roam free. Believe it or not, it isn’t difficult to find incredible old stone farm houses to stay in. In Italy, the concept of agritourism has taken hold with a vengeance.  Like here, farming can be an economically challenging profession. Many Italian farmers have land with ancient stone buildings on it, but no way to pay for their restoration. By inviting curious tourists like ourselves onto their farms and into their homes, they are able to add another source of income to their farm ventures and maybe even get a hand picking their olives, making their cheese, or pressing their oil.

photo [Read more…]

News From the Farm | January 9, 2013

While many holidays during the year pass the Farm by with barely a nod of acknowledgement from the busy fields, our farming cycles coincide well with year-end holiday traditions. The end of the year is a good time for reviewing the 12 months that we just passed through and the four seasons coming up.  We are closing last year’s accounts and opening up those for the new year, both literally and figuratively.

Together we can review the crops that we liked, versus those that weren’t as well received, or didn’t work out as well as we had hoped.  Plans for new building and landscaping projects seem to bubble up with new strength.  Experiments for our spring fields get hatched and take root.  We think about ways to build even better soil, grow even more flavorful fruit, and organize an even more harmonious and attentive work environment.  We resolve that we will make this a year of no accidents at work, a year in which all the farm animals will be completely comfortable and happy, and of course a year when all the CSA boxes will hit a home run in your kitchen week after week after week!

[Read more…]