4485 W CR 1000 N Rossville, IN 46065 Google Map 765-230-0735
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Farm News & Blog

Catch the latest news and information from our farm right here.
Posted 6/28/2015 8:16am by Nate & Emily Parks.

CSA Member News

The online store is open and will close Tuesday at 8:00am for mid week deliveries and Thursday evening at 8:00pm for weekend deliveries. Click here to place your order!

New in the store this week:

Tomatoes

Jalapeño peppers

Hot banana peppers

Shishito peppers

Red and Savoy cabbage 

Cucumbers

EGGS

The mystery item remains!

 

Farm News:

I have tried to keep a real positive tone for our newsletters this year - maybe to keep myself in check! The reality of this  season is getting pretty nerve racking. We brought in 4 extra people last week, and will do the same this week trying to keep ahead of weeds and searching for windows of opportunity to get our fall crops, and summer greens plantings in the ground. With 12 of us running around we can definitely make some real progress. The challenge now is when do you commit people and assets to saving crops and when do you stop the hemorrhaging and till a crop under? The problems are not just weed pressure - we are actually in ok shape there with only a few crops that need tilled under and started again.  It's the endless and excessive rains that are stunting, killing, and bringing in so much disease pressure. These are the areas where we have to make difficult decisions, the last planting of cantaloupes for example were set about two weeks ago right before this weather set in. The plants are yellow, stunted and under weed,disease and pest pressure. That planting is our last chance really to get late melons out; replanting now risks frost before they are ready, saving them means more than likely low yield and poor quality. This example is repeated across the farm on several different crops and really poses the biggest management challenge for me personally.  Thankfully, it's still relatively early and I'm not ready to throw in the towel just yet!

CSA News:

Tomatoes are ready and we are packaging them a bit differently this year. You will notice a count with each type and a typical size range. This is going to make packing much easier for us and hopefully give you a better idea of what to expect when you receive your order.

Eggs are finally available this week as well! ***Please limit yourself to one dozen per order for the next couple weeks as they begin to lay more each week.

Head lettuces were shredded this past week by either heavy rain or some minor hail. It may be a couple weeks before the next plantings recover and they become available again. Arugula is about the same, but lettuce mix will continue for the time being.  We will probably have a void in the mix here in a few weeks because of all of the missed plantings in the last couple weeks.

 

Thanks for your continued support!

Nate, Emily & kids

 
Posted 6/21/2015 10:51am by Nate & Emily Parks.

CSA Member News

The online store is open and will close Tuesday at 8:00am for mid week deliveries and Thursday evening at 8:00pm for weekend deliveries. Click here to place your order!

New in the store this week:

Broccoli

Fennel

Salad/pickling cucumbers

The mystery item remains!


 

 We are back! Did you miss us?  Or did you even know we were gone?!

Last Saturday morning we sneaked off to Ouray, Colorado with 16 of my cousins, aunts and uncles for a summer camping trip that we have wanted to go on for years. Winter vacations are usually easy enough for us to put together; summer vacations are unthinkable!  I hate to admit it has been more than ten years since we took a week off in the summer months. Thanks again to our whole crew who made this opportunity a reality for us. I was a very difficult week for them to manage with the weather and they came through just as we knew they would.

Farm News:

As all of you know, it was incredibly wet last week. I am having nightmares of last summer really. As I walked the fields this morning for the first time in 9 days I can see that there will no doubt be some crops that will be lost to flooding. With more than 5 inches in the last week, the fields are a mess. The seedling house is full of plants that need to go out, but the reality of the soil conditions say 'no way'! Last week's transplanting and direct seeding will be pushed to this week as we hope to dry out a bit. These events will not really show up until late July/early August, when the crops planted last week would be ready for harvest. The other concern now is disease pressure.  Excessive rain with no drying period brings many concerns for vegetable crops. We will, of course, have to monitor the situation and do the best we can with preventative organic applications and a little bit of hot, dry, July weather!

Tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, corn and cucumbers are all coming on quickly and should be available within the next few weeks. Looks like the hens have decided to start laying eggs for us and should finally become available to CSA members next week.  Some of our pigs, who we have grown especially fond of, will be available by the first of August.

Let's pray for a dry week!

Nate, Emily & kids

 
Posted 6/7/2015 9:14am by Nate & Emily Parks.

CSA Member News

Online Store:   The online store is open and will close Tuesday at 8:00am for mid week deliveries and Thursday evening at 8:00pm for weekend deliveries. Click here to place your order!

New in the store this week:

Tuscan Kale

Mystery item??

 

What's happening on the farm?

Ah, the serenity and simplicity of farm life.  Simple?  One would only hope!  I love waking up on mornings like this: sun rising, birds chirping, crops growing.  Everything looks beautiful around here.  Tomatoes & peppers are staked and mulched, planting and seeding is on schedule, and cultivation seems like a round-the-clock job but we're staying on top of it.  There's always something to do around here!  The pigs are fattening up nicely and love to munch on the scraps the kids take to them daily.  The chickens are just starting to lay those tiny pullet eggs so it won't be long before they'll be available in the online store.  The trees in the orchard are growing and the newly established asparagus patch is looking great as well. 

We are still waiting and watching a lot of these new crops that are coming on and can't wait to get them to your tables, which brings me to my next thought - the mystery item is back this week!  What it is will remain a, well....mystery!

Our refrigerated delivery truck that we mentioned last week is working out better than we could have imagined.  We wonder how we ever got along without it!  At pickup, please remember to collapse your produce box after removing your items and place in the designated area.  This helps us and our host site managers.  Thanks!

Have a great week,

Nate, Emily & kids

Posted 5/31/2015 9:49am by Nate & Emily Parks.

The online store is open! Don't forget the ordering deadlines this week: the store will close Tuesday at 8:00am for mid week deliveries and Thursday evening at 8:00pm for weekend deliveries. 

Click here to place your order!



CSA NEWS:

After years of trying to cobble together delivery vehicles, trailers, and routes. We finally made the decision to borrow the money and invest in the quality of our product. As the farm has grown, so to have the delivery routes and the length of time that we are on the road. With some days being a solid 6-7 hours on the road we really have no other choice but to use a refrigerated vehicle to keep product at its freshest. We have known this for a few years and have always been looking and saving money to try to get to this point. This year it was finally time and we couldn't be more excited! We want our product to look and be of the highest quality when you open your box to take home the fruits of our labor. With refrigeration from the time it's picked from the field, washed and packed, to the time it is delivered to your location we will no doubt be making huge strides in accomplishing our goal. Now, for some clever signage on our new rolling billboard!

 

 

FARM NEWS:

Well we received exactly what we were asking for. We got just about 2 inches of rain between all the little rains this past week. We are sufficiently soaked as we write this newsletter this morning. Summer squash are in full bloom, tomatoes are beginning to really set fruit. Broccoli, cabbage, kohlrabi, fennel, beets, carrots, beans and corn are all racing ahead with this extra shot from mother nature. The bounty is just around the corner, we can see it daily around the fields, and it feels good to know we will begin to be more than just a salad bar here in the few weeks to come. We will finish up planting the 7,000 sweet potato slips and the dry bean planting by late this week, and then it is on to mostly succession plantings as all of our main crop has been set out in the field. It has been an unusually chaotic planting season between planting all of the new perennial plantings, establishing new grassways & pasture along with the main vegetable crops.

I am happy to see the end of the spring planting rush! We will have one more large planting at the end of June into the first of July for fall crops, otherwise it is just our weekly greens plantings to worry about. We now begin the shift into maintenance and soon full on harvest mode. Not only is the bulk field work behind us but this also means the bulk of the expense for the season is now behind us as well... Always a relief to know we made it through that part as well! Cruise control? Not quite, but definitely a welcome shift in tasks.

Plant sales are pretty much done for the year with the exception of some annual flowers that we will continue to bring to market and have for sale at the store for a few more weeks. 

Happy ordering!

Nate, Emily & kiddos

 

 

Posted 5/24/2015 9:33am by Nate & Emily Parks.

Happy Memorial Day! Thank you to all of our men and women who serve this great country of ours.

The online store is open as the spring salads continue. Remember the ordering deadlines this week: the store will close Tuesday at 8:00am for mid week deliveries and Thursday evening at 8:00pm for weekend deliveries. 

Click here to place your order!

 **please make sure you are clicking the submit order button at the bottom of the order page and also check your inbox for the email confirmation of your order!  We receive several phone calls and emails weekly from members wondering where there order is when, in fact, the order wasn't completed to its entirety.  

**Also, we will be better about labeling boxes.  In our farm family, there are a lot of duplicate last names which causes confusion during pickup.  We will be labeling some boxes with first and last names.  Please pay attention when grabbing your box that you are getting the right one. 

Hope for some rain and ripening tomatoes :)

Nate, Emily, Jensen, & Macy

 

 

 

Posted 5/17/2015 9:11am by Nate & Emily Parks.

The online store is open until Tuesday at 8:00am for mid week deliveries and Thursday evening at 8:00pm for weekend deliveries. 

Click here to place your order!

 

We have had many questions about the weather and how it's been affecting us this spring. With scattered rains almost daily, it seems we may be in the target often. We have actually had a great run of nice rains followed by a lot of field work. So far the spring has been cooperating with us. Talking with all of my other "farmer buddies" we are all still a bit puzzled by the slow growth of outdoor plantings.  Last week's cool down definitely slowed growth, but it seems something else must be affecting us. Overall, the fields look great and are filling up rapidly. Although planting will continue weekly through September, the bulk of the establishment for the year is in the ground and growing well. 

This is a panoramic view of all of the outdoor tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, and the first planting of cucumbers. 

We have four fields that are really exciting to see this year! We have wanted to establish some long term perennial fruit and vegetable plantings for several years now. This spring we made huge strides in getting that accomplished. 150 trees have been planted in our new orchard!!  We planted mostly apple trees along with a few pear trees.  All are a beautiful site as you pull into the farm now. Along with the orchard, a half acre of asparagus, raspberries, blackberries, rhubarb, grapes, strawberries and goosberries are all established and growing well! This is so exciting for the long term future of food coming from our farm! Those first apples are no doubt going to be the best we've ever had....even though it will take 4-5 years to get there!  The trees are hard to see in the pictures below because they're still small, but they're there!

apple trees

Speaking of strawberries, you will probably notice the first fruits beginning to show up at markets in the next week or two. For the first time in 7 years we will not have May/June strawberries. Ours will become available mid-July and last through frost sometime in mid-October. We had been using an annual based system of planting plugs in the fall and harvest the following spring. The last two years that system just hasn't worked for us and has been a real frustration and money pit! So we have changed back to the standard system of planting in the spring, maintaining all year and then harvest the following year. This will mean huge bounty next spring with more than an acre of berries planted! To make sure we have berries for our members we are using a "day-neutral" variety in one of our greenhouses. This type of berry will bear 60 days after planting and continue to fruit until frost. A much more labor-some type of berry to pick because the fruit is spread out over a long season instead of a large flush all at once in the spring. But it means we will have some berries after the main, local season is over!

We have our first tomato beginning to turn pink! We will be eating it by June 1st, I'm sure which is awesome! Should have a nice supply by July 1st I would imagine, as June is the month when the bounty explodes. 

Egg cartons, calling all egg cartons!  The nesting boxes have been placed back inside the chicken wagon and so the girls can get ready to lay like crazy.  Until then, we need to replenish our supply of egg cartons.  If you've been collecting them all winter, we'd love to take them off your hands.  Drop them off at your pickup location and we'll put them to good use.  Thank you!

More good news is that our family is growing as the farm does!  Yes, we are expecting baby Parks #3 in mid November!  Emily is feeling great as usual and the kids were excited to hear the heartbeat last week and are full of questions.  Jensen says, "it better be a boy because we have WAY too many girls around here!"  We shall find out in November!

Have a great week!

Nate, Emily, Jensen, Macy, and #3

 

 

 

Posted 5/10/2015 8:24am by Nate & Emily Parks.

The online store is open until Tuesday at 8:00am for mid week deliveries and Thursday evening at 8:00pm for weekend deliveries. 

Click here to place your order!


 

We had another rocking day at the Broad Ripple Farmer's market!  Both kids tagged along and were fantastic helpers!  We will continue to have plants - vegetable and flowers - through the end of May for planting in your own gardens and containers.  Don't forget you can visit us at our farm store on the farm as well to purchase your plants,

We are anxiously awaiting for our hens to start laying eggs.  We are anticipating it will be mid-June.  Please help us replenish our egg carton collection by upcycling yours to us!  You may leave them at your pickup locations or drop them off to us at markets.  Thanks in advance!

The infamous mystery item returns this week...what will it be????

Happy Mother's Day!

Posted 5/3/2015 9:36am by Nate & Emily Parks.

The online store is now open until Tuesday morning at 8:00am for midweek deliveries and Thursday evening at 8:00pm for weekend deliveries.

 

FARM NEWS:
 
Two weeks ahead of typical recommendations for our area, our tomatoes were planted Friday, May 1st! We all seem to fall victim to our devices: phones, Ipads, and computers. My vice this time of year are my weather apps and all the possible trends between each source that I follow.  At the end of it all I roll the dice a bit and go for the early planting. It is not often that we have such a positive 2-4 week outlook for early May. So let's be ready for the early year when it is presented but also be prepared to cover it all up if I am wrong!
 
All of the rest of the summer crops will be going out Monday as much as possible before the rains come...and we hope they do. Why chance it? We are in the business of creating and selling food in an environment which gives us just a precious few weeks of full production through July, August and into September. If we can add a couple of weeks to the front end of that window, it gives us an opportunity to extend the season forward and ensure ourselves against a possible early end to the year... you never know how the fall will play out! Remember the 15" of rain in late August last year?
 

CSA NEWS:

If you had trouble with placing an order last week please try again this week and email us separately to verify that your order was placed and received. There is nothing more frustrating than going to pick up your order and finding it is not there! Let's be proactive and work together to make sure it is a great experience for all of us! If you have doubts about whether your order has been placed correctly please call or email us before Tuesday so we can make sure you are taken care of!

 


 
*Broad Ripple Farmer's Market
What an awesome opening day! Thanks to all who continue to come out and support us and the top market in Indy! We love the frantic pace of an active market! Emily and I didn't even have time to get in each others way:) And it felt great to do a market together again after so many years! We rocked it!
 
*The farm store on the farm is full of all those plants you need to get off to a great start with your garden this year as well as fresh greens and raw milk cheese! You'll also appreciate Emily's beautiful hanging baskets and potted annuals brightening up your home! We are open Monday-Friday 10-6pm and Saturday 10-4pm.
 
 
*For all of you Facebook users, LIKE us by clicking here! 
 
Have a great week!
Nate, Emily, Jensen & Macy


 

 
 
 
Posted 4/26/2015 7:35am by Nate & Emily Parks.

THE ONLINE STORE IS OPEN NOW UNTIL

TUESDAY MORNING 8:00AM

 

FARM NEWS:
The season has arrived... but not without some sleepless nights here lately. As I write this newsletter we are looking at another night down around the freezing mark. We had two frosty mornings this week, but everything came through with only minor leaf burn. The early plantings are always a roll of the dice! So far we have about 6 acres in the ground and growing now. We are actually on schedule and moving through spring pretty well. The rains we have received have not been downpours, only nice soaking rain followed by a lot of wind which gets us back into the field pretty quickly. This week we start setting out the summer crops: tomatoes, peppers, squash, melons, cucumbers and more sweet corn. Our first planting of sweet corn made it through last week and is about 6 inches at this point, should be ready by the end of June! We are transplanting all of our sweet corn this year. This is an attempt at perfecting our stand of corn, jumping way ahead of weeds and getting crops to you up to a month ahead of direct seeding!
 
**If you haven't liked us on Facebook, click here!  We have moved to a business page and this is our vow to be better about social media!

 


CSA NEWS:

We are now on schedule for deliveries every week until Thanksgiving! Please take time to read at least the CSA news part of each newsletter EVERY week. Most questions and issues can be taken care of just by reading the first few lines of each newsletter.

Greens will be our mainstay for the next three weeks or so until some of the radish, green onions, leeks, beets and carrots come on. Enjoy the wide range of head lettuce available right now.. they have never been more beautiful. We also have put potatoes back online and available as seed potatoes. These are what we have not planted for our own fields, and are still very edible, we had some for dinner last night. BUT they do have sprouts and they are softer than typical, so be aware! They will come unwashed and sprouted!

We will now have two Saturday options for pick up added, Broad Ripple Farmer's Market and here at the farm. We will no longer be at the Lafayette market so make sure to use one of the mid-week pick up locations. We are also adding another location in Indianapolis of 86th and Meridian for Wednesday pick up (St. Luke's United Methodist Church).

Thanks for remembering to mindful of pickup times and days.  Most of the pickup locations are businesses and we need to remember to respect their time and willingness to let us utilize their space for drop offs.  If the pickup time is from 4:30pm-6:00pm, please don't show up at 3:00 asking for your food.  Depending on how the delivery route is going that day, there's a very good chance it won't be there yet anyway!

Thanks for your help with this.  We appreciate it and so do our good friends hosting delivery sites!
 

 
*Broad Ripple Farmer's Market opens this coming weekend, May 2nd! Emily and I will both be there to start the season off! We are excited to once again be able to do market together, it has been 4-5 years since that has happened....I am sure she will go along with MY way of setting up our booth and not HER way! We shall see!
 
*The farm store on the farm will be opening this Saturday, May 2nd from 10am - 4pm.   In addition to vegetables, we will have plants and flowers for sale!   Lindsey will be here on Saturday to help you in any way she can! 
 
 
 
Nate, Emily, Jensen & Macy


 

 
 
 
Posted 4/12/2015 12:00pm by Nate & Emily Parks.

THE ONLINE STORE IS OPEN NOW UNTIL

TUESDAY MORNING 8:00AM

Picture: Lettuce heads on the sides with tomatoes in the middle of each bed.

 

Farm news:

There's been a lot of progress both inside and out in the last two weeks around here! We have had some rain, but no severe weather or torrential rains as so many in our surrounding areas have had. Our first plantings outside have poked through the ground, and transplanting has been going well with another large round to go in this week - everything is growing well! The greenhouse continues to bulge with loads of food and plants. We received our fertilizers over the past week, including over 10 tons of minerals and micro-nutrients to help remineralize and heal our soil along with 20 tons of composted poultry manure for long season support of our plant's needs. We really are pushing hard this year to try and heal our soil - soil tests show deficiencies across the board in nutrition. The huge investments we are making now will help to get us the get soil back to a sustainable level of nutrient density for the long haul!

Yes, you see PIGS!

Jensen and I went north to Rochester on Friday morning to pick up 12 more piglets. They are right at home with the other three that we have had for a month and a half. Everyone is in a training pen right now and will be for 3-4 more days. We train them to respect an electric fence, so that we may move them literally anywhere on the farm or woods with only  a strand of wire. Once they have touched the wire one time they are pretty well trained to not go near it again, and it becomes a psychological barrier more than a physical barrier. Remember, pigs are incredibly intelligent and learn their bounderies quickly which make raising them on a diverse farm like ours so much fun and so easy! We have been playing with them all weekend and the kids love them.  We are able to use them in so many ways throughout the season and truly produce a superior pork product! Can anyone say BACON?!

CSA NEWS:

The salad mix, beautiful buttercrunch heads, cilantro, spinach and romaine are perfect right now. Buttercrunch is one of my absolute favorite varieties to grow and eat. But is has a very short harvest and growing window...right now is perfect! It looks like we will have  root crops along with all the other spring greens mid-May...not too much longer!

Please be very mindful of pickup times and days.  Most of the pickup locations are businesses and we need to remember to respect their time and willingness to let us utilize their space for drop offs.  If the pickup time is from 4:30pm-6:00pm, please don't show up at 3:00 asking for your food.  Depending on how the delivery route is going that day, there's a very good chance it won't be there yet anyway!
Thanks for your help with this.  We appreciate it and so do our good friends hosting delivery sites!
 

 

Have a great week!

Nate, Emily, Jensen & Macy


 

 
 
 

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