CSA Summary 2014

Season Summary:

44516693-98f7-40ee-bbc2-3ca56ae30645Thank you for being part of our Community Shared Agriculture program this year! We love having a direct connection with our customers, sharing recipes and news from the farm and being able to give a small discount for your loyalty and predictability. We really hope you enjoyed your share this year!

mushroomsThis year was our best year yet! We say that every year, but it’s true. Each year we manage to solve problems that arose the year before. This year our major triumphs were in the onion, potato and brassica fields, and the tomato greenhouse. We figured out that it was a fertility issue that dramatically shortened the shelf life of our onions and potatoes. We figured that out and harvested and successfully stored 95% of our onions and potatoes. Last year our brassicas were flooded and we lost about 3/4 of an acre. This year we increased our Kale, cabbage and broccoli production and had no flooding damage. Having Kielan dedicated to pruning the tomato greenhouse really paid off, and made a big difference in yield and quality of tomatoes. Next year we will do two greenhouses of tomatoes, and we will be grafting all of our plants, so you can look forward to that! Garlic was also a huge success. It was the first year we replanted all of our own garlic seed, and the bulbs this year we’re so much bigger and longer lasting than last year. Look forward to even better garlic next year, as all of our seed was saved from this year!

Space and infrastructure

Due to our success with increasing the fertility of our fields, we had a glut of produce this fall. So much producte851c762-9dd6-4e86-bdf9-22d6ccad492c that we had to rent storage space. This is a good problem to have, but a problem nonetheless. Our season extension has also been a great success, but we do not have a winterized wash and pack area. This winter we will be looking into storage and pack-station solutions for 2015 and beyond. This may look like buying a farm or building something here. If anyone has any leads on agricultural properties within a half-hour of the city-center, let us know!!

Employees and Interns!

50e4bc5e-8073-42ac-9767-dd7dd88354c5Our employees are a key to our success at Roots and Shoots Farm. Danny, Kielan and Lauren are the face of our farm. They are motivated and passionate about farming and we are so grateful to have them. Next year we will be adding another face to the employee roll and one less from the intern team.

Our interns are also a key to our success. Our team this year were topnotch! Each week Robin spent a couple mornings doing some book learning and the took a day a month to visit another local Farm. They were all keen to learn and were great workers!! We’re confident they will continue to contribute to the local food scene in some way in the future!

2014 Share Value

3b36af7f-2462-43de-b7d6-4616c9803200Half Share Value:
You paid: $324
You got: $340 (based on market prices)
Savings from full price: 8%

Full Share Value:
Full cost: $595
You received: $680 (market prices)
Savings from full price: 14.5%

Many of you got returning member discounts as well!

 

photo credit: AnneWaters

Community!

We are always looking for ways to be involved in the community. This year we hosted a few groups, including local school groups, Carleton and Algonquin students, and the Manotick horticultural club.

We also had our annual CSA tour. We had a garlic harvest with a few eager CSA members who got to take an arm load of fresh garlic home.

We hope to do more events in the future!

Moving forward: 2015

We are adjusting the list of produce we’re going to grow next year. We will definitely be growing more herbs and greens. Beans, peppers, tomatoes, potatoes and cucumbers are always a hit and we plan to grow them in abundance next year.

To get a better idea of how you found this year, we’d love it if you took a few minutes to fill out this survey:

Flowers

b321fef2-9b9f-4384-b911-d851f37d416aWe love flowers. The bees love flowers. We will be growing a small amount of flowers again next year, but we will not being doing flower shares or selling at markets. Timing and space make it difficult to squeeze in flower time on the main harvest days. We will be growing flowers for local florists and will be doing local wedding and event design and DIY buckets. Because these do not have to be ready to go out with our veggie delivery, it will be easier to manage.

Thank you to everyone who supported this endeavour through our flower share this year. If you still want our flowers, you can visit Sparrow Floral Design and Blumen Studio and ask for Roots and Shoots blooms; OR if you have a different favourite florists, ask them to source locally!! Also, remember us when you’re throwing a party or a wedding!!