News

Farmer John's Opening Letter Explaining Why He Does What He Does

Hello Everyone,

I apologize for being so late with the first update of the season. We have been working hard to get the planting done after a bit of a late start. In late February it seemed we would have an early spring but the winter came back with a vengeance. The big blizzard brought us nearly 2 feet of snow and then several weeks of rainy weather left the fields too wet to plow until early April. Since then the weather has been acceptable; a bit cool through April but with adequate rainfall.

Sign up for the 2017 fruit share

We will once again offer a fruit share for the 2017 season. Most of the fruit we distribute comes from an organic farm in the Hudson Valley, NY. While the farm grows their vegetable crops organically, the fruit is labeled "eco-grown." This means that they adhere as much as possible to organic methods but do spray when necessary with products not approved for organic production. These sprays are primarily early in the season when the fruit is just setting. The farm regularly tests the fruit to insure it is free of pesticide residues.

SNAP Shares Available

Community-supported agriculture programs pay their farmers up front so that they can buy seeds and tools. Although SNAP users can’t use food stamps to pay a lump sum in February for vegetables they’ll receive in June, Christ Church can pay the farmer now and accept repayment in food stamps during the delivery season from June to November. The number of shares is limited, however—the church can cover up to three full shares or six half shares. Please contact Susan Fowler for more information: 917 734-3746.

Should you grow vegetables in soil flooded by Sandy?

We would not recommend planting in the soil that was flooded by Hurricane Sandy. Have your soil tested. Petroleum products would need some serious treatment or removal. Adding compost to the existing soil will help bind up any heavy metals which may also be of concern. The bacteria from sewage should not be an issue after about 6 months. Raised beds with new soil would be an option. Refer any specific questions to health authorities or your county Extension agent. Useful links…

What is Staten Island Community Supported Agriculture?

Staten Island Community Supported Agriculture (SICSA) is a group of Staten Islanders who buy shares in a farmer's organic vegetable and fruit* crop for the growing season. We support Circle Brook Farm (formerly Starbrite Farm) and John Krueger, the farmer, and share the risks and benefits of food production with him. Members receive organic produce every week for 24 weeks (previously 22) by purchasing share in the farmer’s harvest at the start of the growing season, when the farmer has to pay most of the expenses (seed, soil, fertilizer).