“There are two spiritual dangers in not owning a farm. One is the danger of supposing that breakfast comes from the grocery, and the other that heat comes from the furnace.”
― Aldo Leopold, A Sand County Almanac
I hope your hearths are warm, pots are bubbling, and knives are chopping! It is an honor and privilege to be assembling and distributing this excellent valley and regional food. Thank you for participating. A Winter CSA still blows my mind! We are really lucky to have so many dedicated and wholistic producers here. And folks who value it. And electricity. And diesels that finally start.....more later.
Stay warm, eat well. Here's the box:
Green Earth Farm, Saguache
1 ea ORG red onion
1 ea ORG yellow onion
Green Earth Farm is a Colorado Certified Organic Farm that produces a wide variety of medicinal and culinary herbs and is co-managed by founders Thomas and Lillian McCracken, who both have extensive backgrounds in sustainable agriculture and a long term commitment to environmental preservation. The Farm is located at 7900 feet in Saguache and is surrounded by wilderness, between an ancient seabed and one of the world’s oldest and largest caulderas. The rich soils, pure water and air, and pristine high altitude climate produces potent herbs, sweet tender vegetables and nutritious grains.
Southern Colorado Farms, Center
5 lbs ORG carrots
Southern Colorado Farms was founded in 1977 to focus on key specialty crops for regional eastern markets. Major crops grown are lettuce, romaine, spinach and organic carrots. The organic carrots, interestingly enough, are grown for Gerber Baby Foods. Southern Colorado Farms works with all the major national processors for their regional plants. Long time SLV resident and farmer Amy Kunugi provides Valley Roots with the exceptional Organic Bangor carrots which are winter stored all the way into May. These are more like a juicing carrot, but make no mistake, they are as sweet and crispy as a freshly pulled carrot in July. They are grown in organics soils of course but a quick peel and you are left with dense carotene. If anyone can top the record girth of a 2.5" diameter, let me know!
White Mountain Farm, Mosca (Valley Roots home base)
5 lbs ORG Yukon Gold Potatoes
1 lb ORG Quinoa
White Mountain Farm is located in an ancient lake bed called the San Luis Valley. It lies between the San Juan and Sangre de Cristo Mountains of the Southern Colorado Rocky Mountains, at an elevation of about 7600 feet. The farm has been in the family since the 1930's. In the late 1970's and early 1980's, the main crops were organically grown wheat, alfalfa, and sheep. In 1984 we started experimenting with Quinoa and in 1987, White Mountain Farm was incorporated, named after Mount Blanca, and started growing certified organically grown Quinoa and potatoes. Since then we have added rye and a variety of vegetables to our rotation. In 1987, White Mountain Farm was the first large-scale Quinoa operation in North America. Over the past years we have been selecting the best tasting Quinoa and potatoes to offer our customers. Our goal is to offer good tasting, high quality Quinoa and potatoes at reasonable prices.
The News of White Mountain Farm and the Rockeys of Rockey Farms have co-partnered on White Rock Specialties (WRS), which is not only Valley Roots principle partner and landlord, but the runs the amazing operation of providing specialty potatoes for markets across the nation. These are excellent farmers AND good business folk They're kind enough to feed us too!
Rockey Farms, Center
3 lbs ORG Masquerade Potatoes, Rockey Farms, Center
Rockey Farms is composed of the families of Sheldon and Brendon Rockey. They run a innovative and award winning potato farm near Center that is making sustainable soil practices the normal. They grow fingerlings, these Masquerades (have you ever seen a marbled potato like this?), and the Midnite Moons, of which this specific genetic they got to name. Great farmers, people and fathers!
Brightwater Farms, Monte Vista
2 lettuce heads (Butterhead, Green leaf)
Mennonite Towes brothers have entered the floating-raft, hydroponic, year-round, intensive, greenhouse production sphere with passion and dedication. The new start up near Monte Vista is an in an interesting and efficient way to produce quality head lettuce, basil, and kale year round in high alpine Colorado. It's like a new-age chinampa system, similar to what the Aztecs practiced. Hydroponics boasts less water consumption per unit of food produced, faster growth, and the indoor greenhouse provides climate control for optimal conditions. These greens are UNWASHED and come with the ROOTS still attached. They are ALIVE!
The above photographs of seedlings and greenhouse were taken this morning with Robert Toews at 8:30 am as I discussed the trials of growing basil, his electrician's mis-engineer of the lighting system, and the reddening of the red leaf lettuce due to moving it along the south wall. Since the sun is so low, it shines through the roof panels of polycarbonate perpendicular to the layers and therefore is very diffused. The south wall has vertical panels and therefore the midday sun has a clear direct path through only 2 layers of polycarbonate. Red leaf lettuce needs sun to be red...
Colorado Mushroom Farm, Alamosa
0.5-1 lb Portabella caps
Long time valley employer and quality commercial producer of Rahka Mushrooms now is Colorado Mushroom Farm. They produce consistent and quality mushrooms with sterilized biomass media inoculated with specific mycelial fungi in indoor controlled temperature and humidity environments. Shitakes and oysters are on their radar!
Absmeier High Altitude Garlic, Alamosa (for new Winter CSA folks)
1 lb CNG garlic
The idea to grow and sell garlic had been a thought in the back of the owner, Adrian's mind for quite awhile, but he hadn't mentioned it to many people. Once he checked into it and got the answers he needed, he talked to his close friends and family, told them to set aside a couple of days, and be prepared to get to work! Well, work is what we all did. Adrian has a multi-disciplined background including farming and ranching. As a result, he has produced excellent crops of quality garlic! We have grown a variety of garlic as proof that Colorado LOVES garlic and wants to share it with you.
We offer 7 varieties of hardneck garlic, both as seed and food, which include Krasnodar White, Georgian Fire, Armenian, Leah, Chesnock Red, German Extra Hardy and Purple Glazer. The hardneck variety of garlic produces scapes (the "flower stalks" of hardneck garlic plants, although they do not actually produce flowers). Once the scape begins to curl, making a full circle, they are snapped off. This allows the garlic to continue growing to its full potential. The scapes, when cooked, are similar to scallions. Check our "Extras" link for some great tasting recipes.
We are a Certified Naturally Grown (CNG) farm which is based on the premise that we practice natural farming methods. In other words, we do not use any synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, fungicides or GMO seeds, just like organic farms. Our garlic is grown naturally in the "Land of Cool Sunshine".
Arkansas Valley Organic Growers (our partner Food Hub to the East) (for returning Winter CSA folks)
1 Spaggetti Squash, Colon Orchards, Canon City
2 Delicata Squash, Colon Orchards
1 Turbin Squash, Colon Orchards
1 Butternut Squash, Colon Orchards (only for NEW Winter CSA folks)
Arkansas Valley Organic Growers is a group of farmers dedicated to Farm-Fresh local food for homes, restaurants, and groceries. They are based out of Avondale, CO (near Pueblo) and whose member farms are all along the Arkansas River all the way up to Buena Vista with Weathervane Farm (who has supplied Valley Roots with an awesome broccoli and excellent soil grown tomatoes). The very excellent farmer of Dan Hobbs is a large part of this food hub, and who has also been instrumental in launching the Valley Roots Food Hub. The organic roasted green chiles we carry are from Dan's farm and as he says, "this year was a special crop that lead to a real deep flavor."
Hobbs Family Farm, Avondale
1 lb mixed Orange and Purple Carrots
Our 30 acre farm is located in Avondale, which is on the east side of the Rocky Mountains near Pueblo, Colorado. Our elevation is 4556’, latitude 38.2°, average rainfall 12”. We farm here on the high plains because of the natural resources conducive to organic farming. Our soil is classified as “Prime, Irrigated Farm Land of National Importance”. The soil type is a mineral-rich Rocky Ford silty clay loam. We have senior water rights from the Bessemer Ditch, which is the third oldest irrigation ditch in Colorado. Bessemer Ditch water comes directly from the Pueblo Reservoir and thus does not have excessive chemical tail water.
We grow certified organic garlic, open pollinated seeds, fresh vegetables, grains, cover crops and hay in a six year rotation. This rotation, along with the aridity, keeps disease and pest pressure to a minimum and yields premium quality food, seed and forage. We are certified organic by the Colorado Department of Agriculture #113.
We supplement our seed offerings with several other growers in our Bioregion including Javernick Fmily Farms in Cañon City, Milberger Farms in Pueblo, Greenhorn Acres in Fowler and Chokurei Ranch in Moffat. These are all organic farms, but some are not certified. We have described these operations in our product list as "uncertified organic".