Bugtussle Farm – II. CSA Produce

28May13

Up on the hill above their homestead, Eric gave us a tour starting with where they raise their CSA produce. Since Eric’s been doing organic produce since he was 21, he’s learned quite a bit and applies it to his farming today.

They rely on rainfall to water their vegetables. Tomatoes, garlic, elephant garlic, sweet corn, onions, potatoes, squash, eggplants, sweet potatoes, strawberries, lettuce and cabbage are just some of the vegetables grown at Bugtussle. Garlic is their most successful crop. Helen endorsed it by saying, “We are always sad when we run out of it. The grocery store’s taste nothing like yours.”

Since we’re in the middle of raising our own produce and are new to the weather, bugs and diseases in Tennessee we were very interested in Eric and Cher’s advice. Eric showed us the potato bug and it’s larvae which can be very damaging to the crops. Cher says the flea beetle can damage new eggplants. They protect them by covering them with white polyester cloth.

To control weeds, Eric first plows the land and lets it sit for a week or two. He wants the weeds to die off before he plants. One of the drawbacks of composting is weeds. Eric doesn’t use compost. He lets the animals fertilize the land through pasture rotation.

According to Bugtussle Farm’s blog, their main CSA season lasts 20 weeks beginning in early May and lasting through September. They provides what is fresh and seasonal. In the spring, you might find lettuce, peas, spinach, brocolli, etc. In the hot summer months, it’s likely to have tomatoes, peppers, melons, beans, corn, etc. Toward the end of the season, winter squash, sweet potatoes, cabbage, greens, etc. are an example. They also offer a fall share that runs through November. Their deliveries are scheduled every Saturday at a Nashville farmer’s market.

Make sure you check out all of our 5-part series on Bugtussle Farm. Next, Bugtussle Farm – Livestock

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