Harvesting Summer Squash & Observing Pepper Blooms
Village Farm Team,
We hope you like summer squash because we made the first harvest last week and will probably end up having to make a few more this week to keep up with their growth! Summer squash is a blanket term that is used to describe any squash varieties that are harvested when immature and tender during the warmer months of the year. The entirety of a summer squash is edible from the skin to the seeds, unlike winter squashes which often have tougher skin and seeds. Summer squashes can be eaten raw or cooked and they store best in the crisper drawer of your fridge for up to 7-10 days (but we have a feeling you’ll eat them well before then).
The first pepper blooms were spotted this past week! Unlike our squashes, peppers are self-pollinating. This means that they don’t produce male and female blooms that require the transfer of pollen from the male to the female. Instead, the flowers of a pepper are pollinated when the pollen is transferred from the anthers to the stigma in each individual flower. This process takes place due to naturally occurring forces like wind and insects. Did you know that hot peppers originated in Mesoamerica? The reason we often refer to them as “chili peppers” is because it is a derivation of the native Nahuatl (Aztec) word “chīlli”.
We transplanted cucumbers into our newly trellised rows this past week. As cucumbers grow and begin to produce vines, they also begin to produce specialized leaves called tendrils. These tendrils are touch sensitive and will wrap around anything solid they come into contact with. So how do we get our cucumbers to grow up the trellis rather than along the ground? We’ll “train” them to grow vertically by helping to attach the tendrils to the trellis! We’re excited to begin this process over the coming weeks as our cucumbers grow.
Please note the veggie wagon is still open on Saturdays from 8-12 but with more stringent sanitary protocols in place!
Happy Harvesting, The Agmenity Farm Team
Words & Photos by Courtney West