Greetings from all of us at Cupola Hollow Farm CSA!
We would like to let you know what is going on with our farm and explain what Our CSA is all about. You can also download our 2015 CSA Brochure PDF (here).
A CSA is a unique approach to bringing farms and families together for great food and to support small local farms and sustainable agriculture.
Members of the farm pledge in advance to cover the anticipated costs of the farm operation. In return, they receive shares in the farm’s bounty throughout the growing season, as well as satisfaction gained from reconnecting to the land and their food supply. It is important in today’s world to know who is growing your food and where it is being grown. Members also share in the risks of farming, including unfavorable weather or pests.
Unlike some of the local CSA programs, Cupola Hollow Farm LLC, CSA does not require you to perform any field work as part of your participation in the program.
With that said, how quickly time flies. We’ve spent the last couple months looking at seed catalogs, reading new books and of course shoveling snow!
The bountiful never ending snow crop has us all longing for some sunshine and the ability to get back into the fields. We hope that this white blanket will go away soon but we fear that it may be a late spring planting scenario.
Over the winter we headed to Pennsylvania and attended a Vegetable Growers Conference and are headed to Sturbridge Massachusetts in March week to attend a New England Direct Marketing Conference. These meetings provide us with new ideas, network with other CSA’s and recharge our enthusiasm.
We anxiously await news and hope to partner with the USDA to construct a high tunnel greenhouse on the farm allowing us to better extend some of our seasonal crops.
Anyway, time to think of warmer weather and the 2015 growing season and planning our 3rd CSA partnership. We have made some changes to our CSA farm operation and look forward to getting started.
We have gone through each of our members surveys and will keep in mind all of the great suggestions they made as we go forward to the 2015 CSA season.
Last year for our first season last year, the weather definitely was not kind to us! The summer brought record heat and drought. Despite our efforts to irrigate we did loose a number of the crops in the field. Greens, melons, beans and other tender crops took the brunt of the loss. This is one of the risks that can affect a CSA.
Other crops like the sweet corn, and tomatoes we thought were excellent!
Our goal this year is to definitely offer more greens, expand on fresh herbs and offer a few more varieties of vegetables.
Members indicated they enjoyed the fruit such as peaches, strawberries, apples, blueberries and also loved the local apple cider but most of all enjoyed the fresh strawberry bread!
Our current members also communicated the interest in native honey, eggs, our homemade soap and local cheese.
This year we hope to enter a partnership with a local food shelter to donate any unclaimed weekly shares not picked up by our members.
Over the winter we have also harvested a multitude of recipes to assist you with preparing the various vegetables we will be growing.
We also are aware how the economy has impacted us all. It is our intent to tighten our belt and work smarter this year. This year the CSA Membership will not rise in price for the 2014 Growing Year.
Our Full membership will remain at $ 550.00.
Our Half Share will remain at $ 300.00.
We again anticipate running the program for approximately 18 to 22 weeks with the help of Mother Nature.
Members may lock in their share by placing a $100.00 non refundable deposit by April 1, 2015. Given the economic situation, we are flexible and willing to speak with you to allow payments up to the June 1, 2015 deadline to reserve your share.
To avoid disappointment, we encourage you to reserve your share as soon as you can as we do limit the number shares.
Our intent is that the number of family memberships in our CSA will not grow but will remain the same. We feel that we have a comfortable number of shares that we can continue to service.
Our motto is to do a good job with what we have and not take on too much.
All of the conferences that we have attended indicated that in their second year, most farmers double and triple their CSA shares. We are a small family farm operation and prefer the personal contacts.
At Cupola Hollow Farm LLC, it is our intent to continue to offer to you a great, diversified family operated CSA. Our pledge continues to offer you locally grown fresh vegetables knowing where and who is growing your food.
If Mother Nature cooperates, our stand will be opening up for weekends beginning in late March with limited hours.
Please call ahead for hours and stop by and say “HI” as we would love to see you!
Kathy & Donna
Kathy Dunai-Thibedeau Donna Dunai and the gang!