What to expect from Green Connect in Summer
Summer is a time on the farm where everything speeds up. If we can manage to keep on top of the irrigation, the weeds, and the summer pests and diseases, then we’ll be rewarded with serious abundance in summer veg!
As always, we encourage our customers to keep an open mind when it comes to some of the less-conventional veg. Many customers have been introduced to their new favourite veg through the Green Connect box! But we understand that there are some things that people just don’t like, or they may grow some veg at home and not want to double up. Therefore, we have an ‘exclusion’ system, where you can select up to three things from the lists below that you don’t want in your box (you can do this week to week or ongoing). Your exclusions will be taken out of your box and replaced with something else. Send your exclusion requests to [email protected]
Seasonal Flowering Veg
Tomato (cherry), zucchini (grey and black jack), cucumber (Lebanese), squash (yellow patty-pan), eggplant, green beans
The summer quartet of tomato, zucchini, eggplant and cucumber will be in full flight this summer. Because of the fruit fly issues posed by the Illawarra’s high humidity, we only grow cherry tomatoes (which are less susceptible to fruit fly). These little guys are a crowd favourites and will be filling boxes from now until May. The Zucchini’s which have dominated spring, will carry on playing a role this summer, although we have stripped back their numbers to make way for the late summer stars of eggplants and cucumbers.
The first eggplants start to fruit around Christmas time – appearing like shiny Christmas decorations throughout the farm. This year we’ve been trailing some varieties of African and Burmese eggplants that have been cultivated by some of our staff, which will complement the stock standard large purple fruit. The yellow ‘patty-pan’ squash which has been a bit of a hit over spring will continue into summer, and the green beans that we’re such a success last year will be fruiting very soon.
Oak lettuce, cos lettuce, silver beet, rainbow chard, kale (green curly leaf and red russian), rocket, joi choi, boy choy, amaranth leaf, radicchio, sweet potato leaf
We can grow a lettuce in four weeks over summer, so the only barrier to getting our soft leaf oak, or crunchy cos lettuce into your boxes will be picking them fast enough! We like to use our pre-made salad mix as a bit of a change up for customers, especially over summer where people have allot of celebrating to do. These bags can just be dropped into a bowl and jazzed up with a simple dressing!
Kale and silver beet are year-round crops at our farm. This is the first time that we have taken bok choy and joy choy so deep into the warm season, but they seem to be holding up well! It’s also the first time we’ve tried big crops of radicchio, so we’re really exciting to see what our customers make of this Italian classic. Rocket and amaranth leaf will add a little spice to summer dishes, and we’ll also be featuring sweet potato leaf in a couple of boxes through-out the season.
Roots, starches and alliums
Potatoes, Carrots (Dutch and purple dragon), beetroots (golden and purple), radish (red cherry and purple plum), pumpkin, leek, spring onions, onions.
We hate to brag, but this carrot season has been the best we’ve ever had, with our dutch finger carrots, purple dragon, and red core jumping out of the ground and into the boxes! Sumer is also beetroots time to shine, with our purple beets and golden globe being a feature through the season. Although we’ve stripped back our radish plantings since they dominated the winter months, they will still feature in boxes throughout the summer.
As always, we will be outsourcing our potatoes and onions from other organic growers and will outsource the occasional pumpkins when supplies are short. Leek will occasionally compliment the onion in boxes, and this summer we are trailing growing ‘salad’ onions – young white onions picked early and bunched up to be eaten cooked or raw
Basil, parsley, dill, parella, rosemary, bay leaf, mint, lime leaf, water celery
Basil is the king of summer, so get your Italian cookbooks out because we’ll be making the most of the season by giving you plenty of it. Parsley and dill are also summer favourites and will be interchanges with some conventional herbs such as rosemary, bay leaf and mint, along with some less conventional herbs like water celery. Parella is this summer’s experimental crop and is doing really well so look out for this fragrant leaf in your box this summer.