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< February 28-2013 | Notes Library | March 14-2013 >

Weekly Market Notes for March 07, 2013

Hello Market Friends:

It's wonderful to feel the strengthening sun on these lengthening days, and dream green dreams. There's nothing like friendships with farmers for getting a 'sneak preview' of spring! Here's the news:

From Sosnickis: "Oh Happy March!! Beautiful sun yesterday in the greenhouses! Our sweet onions are up and growing nicely along with tons of other early veg! I've seeded the majority of all tomatoes now, our peppers etc, etc. We heat sections of the greenhouses, so we pushed the onions, chard, spinach etc to the middle back half (less heat) to make room up front for tomatoes and peppers, which need warmer temps to germinate and grow properly. All is well and we are excitedly receiving seed packages of new items to try this year - so stay tuned! Ben will be at Dufferin as usual with our Fingerling Potatoes, Cabbages, Sauerkraut and Green Beans. Now is the time to discuss any vegetable crops you'd love to see at market this summer. If you'd like us to grow something different - run it by him! We are always willing to try new things!" Jessie & Ben

Speaking of new things--well, new to the market, but actually long-cherished old things--we've persuaded Kevin Hamilton to trial three of Colette Murphy's (Urban Harvest) tastiest varieties of heirloom beans for fresh shelling this summer: Jacob's Cattle, Badalucca Climbing Canellini, and Red Flame Romano. Don't you just love the names of old vegetable varieties? These beans will make luscious stews or side dishes for you come harvest time. Colette says now is the time to start peppers and eggplants indoors, and she will be at the market with a full load of all kinds of beautiful seeds for your 'ranch', no matter what size it is.

Kind Organics News: "It's been a long winter but there are preliminary signs of growth in the greenhouses. We want to say thank you to all the customers that came out to the market to support us, regardless of difficult weather and winter conditions! We will have our first harvest of Bordeaux Spinach, Fire Blend and Chickweed available at Dufferin Grove this week." Tamas and Sandra Dombi

Most of you will be familiar with the acronym CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), a model that has created opportunities for many farmers, as well as the eaters that benefit from direct connections with them. In case you're not sure, the basic concept is, we can support the farmers who grow food for us by making a commitment and giving payment up-front, so they can buy seeds and equipment to start the season, know how much to grow, and have a buffer through the ups and downs. In return, they promise a weekly share of the harvest, all season long. Plan B (in collaboration with other producers) has grown this idea into a supply link for hundreds of customers, and Jenny Cook (Knuckle Down Farm) and Kevin Hamilton (Shared Harvest) also base their farming around CSAs.

Now we have a new version launching at Dufferin: a Community Supported Fishery! Andrew and Natasha Akiwenzie are selling shares in their CSF in preparation for a 15 week program from April to mid July. By purchasing a full or half share now, you can help to ensure that their boat, nets and other equipment are ready for the spring season, and you will receive $15/week worth of fish at the market. A 15 week share is $225, or an 8 week share is $120, with payment by cheque or cash due by Friday March 22nd. If you want a smaller amount of fish, consider calling a friend, relative or neighbour and making plans to share-a-share. Get on board! This is a great way to put ideas about sustainable food systems into action. Talk to Andrew about the details at the market, or send an email to <>. Of course, you'll still be welcome and able to buy fresh, frozen or smoked fish without a share, too. For this week, Natasha wrote to say the smoker was on, and Andrew will be down.

Don't forget, Daylight Savings Time begins this weekend, but first...

See you at the market!

Anne Freeman

P.S. It's time for Seedy Saturdays all over town! Way to go, Toronto Community Garden Network! Visit their website ( for details.

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