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Harvesting Barese Chard & Planting Peas

Village Farm Team,

We harvested the first of our Barese Swiss Chard last week. This chard variety is compact compared to our Rainbow and Peppermint varieties. It has thick, white stems and smooth leaves that curl slightly at the edges. Though it is often mistaken for bok choy due to its similarity in appearance, Barese chard is in the Beta genus along with beets while bok choy is in the Brassica genus along with cauliflower, broccoli, mustard greens, and cabbages. The flavor of Barese chard is mild and spinach-like with a hint of earthiness and an unusual saltiness. We love the difference in textures the stems and leaves both lend to a dish so make sure you don’t toss the stems!

We’re planting the first succession of peas and beans this week. We'll be planting Sugar Ann Snap Peas and Cosmos Beans. Sugar Ann is a quintessential snap pea with a crisp texture and sweet flavor. Cosmos is a bush bean, or what we commonly refer to as a green bean. We’re particularly excited to see how this variety does because it is supposed to have good heat tolerance. Once the peas and beans begin to germinate, it will be between 50-60 days until we are able to make the first harvest.

We’ve reached the transition state between the winter and spring seasons. This means that we don’t have enough cool weather remaining to plant more winter crops like brassicas but we aren’t yet past the last freeze threat to be able to plant warm weather crops in the field either. In the meantime, we’ve been focusing on keeping our warm weather-loving crops like tomatoes and peppers happy in the greenhouse while we gradually turn under our spent winter crops. We hope you’ve been getting your fill of our winter crops because, soon enough, you won’t see them again until the end of the year!

Happy Harvesting, The Agmenity Farm Team

Words & Photos by Courtney West

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