2016 Adobe House Farm Update

Spring is in the air! Though the fields are still muddy, if it’s a dry month, we’ll be able to plant frost-hardy greens, carrots, radishes, turnips, and onions. Salad greens from our tunnel will be available for just the next week and then the tunnel will be planted for early tomatoes! Come visit us this Wednesday at the Smiley Building from 3-6 to buy our fresh, sweet winter lettuce! 

Many of you have been emailing us to be in our CSA for the upcoming season, but because we will not be growing on the 32nd St. plot, we will NOT be offering an Adobe House Farm CSA! But there is a local CSA option…

We will continue to grow at the 1-acre plot in the same neighborhood as Tobey’s adobe house where we have 2 tunnels and a greenhouse. We will be marketing our products at Farmers Market and through a new local farmer collaborative CSA run and distributed by the farmer-owned Southwest Farm Fresh Co-op (SWFF).

Becoming a SWFF CSA member is an excellent opportunity to support many of your local farmers and our cooperative all at once, allowing each farm to specialize in fewer crops, but still offering you a large variety together. You can also add local cheese, meats, and baked goods to your subscription if you want! The pick up is at the Smiley Building on Thursdays from 3-6. Check out more details here and subscribe early if you are interested (they are limiting membership to 100 and only 30 for the meat add-on so join quickly).

It has been a wonderful winter of rest, learning and preparation for the coming season. Linley had the opportunity to continue to promote local food to the community at the Green Business Roundtable. Check out her presentation here if you missed it.

While our operation is smaller this year, we are still passionate and committed to growing food for Durango and open to new possibilities for where we can grow on larger acreage on a more permanent basis for you.

Peter, Reid, Linley


CSA Flyer

Linley Dixon Speaks at the January Green Business Round Table in Durango, COLO.

CSA Letter Week 16

This week’s harvest: pumpkins, winter squash, small decorative gourds, tomatoes!, carrots, onions, leeks, garlic, kale

It’s finally here! The last week of the 2015 Adobe House Farm CSA. We hope you’ve enjoyed consuming our produce as much as we’ve enjoyed growing it for you. While the CSA shares have greatly benefitted from Durango’s extending run of nice weather, alas, all good things must come to an end. Today marked the day of what has come to be our yearly ‘hail event’. Thankfully most of the harvest had been completed and our losses were limited to sweet baby arugula (sorry, we tried to get you one more greens harvest), our uncovered Roma tomato beds (some are under low tunnels), peppers and some poked marked sugar pumpkins. At least Mother Nature held off until our final week.

Assuming the apples we plan to harvest next week look good, we’ll offer an extra pickup along with a few other goodies we glean from the farm over the next week. So please stay tuned and look for an email from us next week regarding an extra pick up.

We’d also like to thank every one of our members for supporting Adobe House Farm. You make it possible for us to farm here in Durango. Your support, smiles and “thank you’s” throughout the season mean more to us then you can know. We’ll keep you posted regarding our farm plans for next year and when we have winter greens for sale and we look forward to seeing you around town this winter. In the meantime, keep supporting businesses that source locally as it really is the best way to grow and maintain a viable and self-sustaining local food system.

Look forward to seeing you again tomorrow!

Linley, Peter, Reid, Charlie, Tim

CSA Letter Week 15

This week’s harvest: tomatoes (cherry and big), basil, leeks, onions, lots of peppers (serrano, jalepeno, sweet), kale, zucchini, eggplant, cucumbers, winter squash (buttercup or kuri), sugar pumpkin, garlic

We are lucky to have such a late frost (for Durango) this year. With still no frost in the forecast, it means that tomatoes, basil, peppers, zucchini, eggplant, and cucumbers will be in your CSA to the end (next week is the last week)! Nonetheless, the plants have slowed down and seem to know that the end is near and are joining the trees in hues of yellow, silver and brown.

For the last few weeks, we’ve cut back the irrigation on the outdoor big tomatoes, just barely keeping them alive, causing the fruit to finally start turning red.

Lastly we’re happy once again to connect Jake Glotfelty, Durango’s own Alaskan fisherman, to our CSA members. A note from Jake, and more information is below. We can attest to the unbelievable quality of Jake’s fish, especially when paired with fresh garlic and tomatoes! Just like our carrots, once you’ve had his fish, you’ll never want to go to the grocery store again.

Look forward to seeing you again tomorrow!

Linley, Peter, Reid, Charlie, Tim

From Jake:
Good news! The 2015 Bristol Bay Salmon th
at we caught have just arrived in Durango! 

It was another great season, fast and furious.

Note that the halibut and king crab will arrive later in the season, and as soon as it arrives I will let you know.  Pre-orders for the halibut and crab will guarantee you get as much as you would like.  Prices are yet to be determined, and they will be very competitive based on market value.   Last year they were Halibut $30/lb and Crab $25/lb — just to give you an idea.

Click here for an Order Form and Click here for more information about the fishery and what I do.

I am willing to deliver (within reason).

Please call or email with questions, or orders.  I look forward to hearing from you.

CSA Letter Week 14

This week’s harvest: tomatoes (cherry and big), garlic, leeks, onions, carrots, peppers (serrano, jalepeno, sweet), daikon radish, Portuguese kale, zucchini, eggplant, cucumbers, winter squash (buttercup or kuri).

Some members of the community are attempting to revive the Animas Valley Grange, an old community center off CR 203. Back in the mid 1800’s, granges formed across the country for farm families to gather to organize for their common economic and political interests. The Animas Valley grange has served as the location for 4-H meetings, but this summer it is also hosting a once-a-month lecture series.

Last Wednesday I attended a lecture at the grange on the water quality of the Animas river and on Oct. 21 Kate Greenburg, from the National Young Farmers Coalition, will be discussing the future of farming in the Animas Valley. A local food system depends on a community committed to buying local produce, and also one that is active in finding solutions that allow small farms to succeed. Reviving the grange seems like a great jumping off point to allow members of the community to learn about the issues that small farmers face and to be part of the discussion.

Enjoy the harvest and see you tomorrow.

Linley, Peter, Reid, Charlie, Tim

CSA Letter Week 13

This week’s harvest: tomatoes (cherry and big), basil, leeks, onions, carrots, peppers (serrano, jalepeno, sweet), daikon radish, chard, kale, cauliflower or cabbage, zucchini, eggplant, cucumbers.

Today we hosted a Fort Lewis College class on our 32nd St. farm. The theme was “why hasn’t the local food system succeeded yet in Durango.” There are places around the country where local food systems are thriving, but why not here yet? I was so impressed with the students who seemed so motivated to solve what to me seems like a very complex problem.

We discussed the fact that the cool and short growing season causes a surplus of local produce for only two months of the year. But, the cold state of Vermont has a thriving local food system so that can’t be the only thing holding us back. Other students brought up the lack of a local distribution system (go SWFF, we need you), the price of land with water rights (YES!!), and a lack of training and support for beginning farmers for farming in this region (for sure!).

Despite these set backs, the students were impressed with the poundage that our farm produces on just 3 acres making it seem possible to feed the town of Durango pesticide-free produce in the acreage around the Animas river. If only we as a community could figure out how to get there!

Interactions on the farm with the community are the highlight of farming for me. Durango is full of intelligence, passion, and people ready to act! How lucky we are to live where community, health, and place matter.

Enjoy the harvest and see you tomorrow.

Linley, Peter, Reid, Charlie, Tim

CSA Letter Week 12

This week’s harvest: tomatoes (cherry and big), basil, leeks, onions, purple carrots, peppers (serrano, jalepeno, sweet), daikon radish, head lettuce, chard, kale, cauliflower or cabbage (next week switch), apples, and sweet grapes (with tart seeds)!

What to do with all the food this time of year? First of all, enjoy it while it lasts with the looming inevitable frost. Old timers in the region tell us that it used to frost this time of year, but it hasn’t frosted until the end of September since we’ve been farming here, and 3 of the last 5 years we’ve made it into October! So come on green tomatoes, turn while you still have time!!

This week, we were generously offered apples and grapes by neighbors that both wanted humans to get to their fruit before the bears. Bears do quite a bit of damage to the trees and vines, never mind your nerves when you stumble across them. So you are the lucky benefactors of the fruits of the McClymond’s orchard and the Parcell’s grapevines.

Yes, exhaustion has set in for your farmers, but as much as we look forward to winter, we’d prefer to keep reaping the rewards of the season for as long as possible.

Linley, Peter, Reid, Charlie, Tim

CSA Letter Week 11

This week’s harvest: purple carrots, cucumbers, zucchini, onions, tomatoes, basil, tomatillos, garlic, hot peppers, sweet peppers, eggplant, green beans, leeks, cabbage, head lettuce, chard, kale.

Raina has a book called “The Feel Good Book” that asks us to think about what makes us feel good. Tonight she said “carrots from the farm make me feel good.”  For her, I think they “feel good” because she loves the taste and maybe the surprise of discovering a hidden colorful vegetable completely under the ground. But, in thinking about it, carrots from the farm make me feel good too for so many additional reasons. The way we farm has so many benefits including “righting the wrongs” from so many of our society’s biggest problems.

One of the most common reasons why people say they support our farm is because they want to eat produce free of pesticide residues. I honestly couldn’t imagine having to work in a poison cloud and then eating the crops afterwards, but this is how the majority of the food we eat is produced (never mind all the additives and preservatives added to processed food).

However, while pesticide residues found on food are a valid concern, numerous studies have found that the higher doses that farm workers and their families are exposed to cause numerous illnesses including cancer, hyperthyroidism, respiratory diseases, and many more. Farmworkers also suffer thousands of diagnosed pesticide poisonings each year. The knowledge that you are not supporting a food system that subjects farmers and their families to high doses of pesticides “feels good” and this is just one of many reasons to “feel good” about our food.

So even though you might not be able to taste the difference between produce from our farm and that from the store (although many times you can), the knowledge of where the food comes from and how it is grown makes you “feel good” when you eat it and that information alone, for me, makes it taste that much better.

CSA Letter Week 10

This week’s harvest: Tomatoes, basil, peppers (sweet and spicy), onions, beets, carrots, string beans, cauliflower, cucumbers, chard, kale, head lettuce, spicy salad mix (arugula and mizuna).

Thank goodness for the rain! Our pond was getting VERY low and we even had to relocate the pump to make sure it wouldn’t pick up sediment from the bottom. We held off watering on Tuesday betting on the 50% chance of rain in the forecast and boy did it come! It’s been an odd year with the rain coming in June and the missing monsoon thunderstorms, but we were happy to see this gentle rain slowly absorb into the soil. I miss watching the lightning and clouds build over the mountains every afternoon this time of year, but it has been nice not to worry about hail.

The farm has been kicking out lots of produce and we are grateful that our hard work is materializing into tasty food. We’ve even been able to market some of our extra poundage through the Southwest Farm Fresh Co-op, something everyone should be aware of in our region. Every place that has a thriving local food system also has a thriving local distribution system and I am very hopeful that SWFF will fill the void for our region. Marketing can be the hardest part of farming and a local co-op would have made a big difference in our first few years while we were building a name for ourselves. If you haven’t seen it yet, take a look at the SWFF website and the write-up of our farm: http://southwestfarmfresh.com/farm-fresh-news/get-to-know-your-local-farmer-adobe-house-farm/

Looking forward to seeing you tomorrow!

Linley, Peter, Reid, Charlie, Tim

CSA Letter Week 9

This week’s harvest: beans, cabbage, broccoli, hot peppers, basil, eggplant, beets, carrots, chard, kale, tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, garlic, summer squash, sunflower

We spent some time this week turning under the beds we used this spring so the farm will look more open to you if you’d like to take a look. Though we like to keep the soil covered with vegetation so it doesn’t erode in the wind, it feels good to turn the weeds under before they go to seed.

There are lots of beautiful flowers that attract pollinators and predators at the front of the farm. They are very important for keeping the balance between good and bad bugs and preventing the need for insecticides. Brassicas are among the most heavily sprayed conventional crops because the caterpillars and aphids adore them (they know good nutrition when they see it!). Since this is the first week for cabbage, you should start to get used to the idea that you might find a cabbage moth caterpillar. This is simply part of eating organic food fresh from the farm and the tenderness of the cabbage leaves are well worth it! We never cook our cabbage, simply chop it up fine and eat it raw. (Peter’s letter last year about worms is entertaining if you’re interested: http://www.adobehousefarm.com/csa-letter-week-14/

This week the first round of sunflowers have opened! We like to stick them in a skinny glass bottle to brighten a room (give the bottoms a fresh cut when you get home). Basil loves this August heat so we’ve got enough for you to make pesto.

It seems like we’ve transitioned from weeding all day to harvesting all day and I think you’ll notice when you see the size of your share! If you have the time take a stroll through the farm, pick some extra kale, and see if you can spot the bald eagles and let’s enjoy that last summer barbeque before school starts next week!
Linley, Peter, Reid, Charlie, Tim, John