Snakes in the Garden!

Let me start by saying I am deathly afraid of snakes!  I don’t care if they are gardner snakes or king cobras – I kind of lose it when I see one.   So I have mixed feelings about a gardener snake that took up residence in the peppers near our driveway.

On the bad side, I did my usual jumping and yelling fit when I first ran into the snake.  Also, I’m just waiting for the day when I’m out picking peppers close to sundown and reach down only to feel something scaly – nightmare.  My son, like any 6 year old boy, suggested we go out and kill it.  When I told him no, he asked the typical “why?”  That made me push aside my fears and think about the good side of the snake.  First and foremost for an organic grower, any signs of reptiles or amphibians on the farm are good.  Since creatures like snakes and frogs have permeable skin, toxins in the environment will soak right into their bodies.  So when we see them around the farm we know the environment we helped create is healthy.  Also, getting a little mystical here, snakes are lucky.  As an undergraduate I was a Classics major (you know, Greek, Latin…that kind of stuff). Going all the way back to Ancient Greece, snakes were revered as a holy animal and were a associated with Asclepius, the God of Healing.  This is where we got that snake wrapped around a staff which represents the medical profession.  It’s interesting that in an environmental way the snake again is filling the same role as symbol of health and healing.

The weather has been frustrating as of late.  Many of those summer crops like corn, tomatoes, and melons are just not ripening in such cold weather….pray for heat!

Some of the chickens will be processed this Sunday…please see email for details.

In the box:
Shunkyo radishes: The bright-red and long radishes with greens on top.  These are traditionally grown in Korea, but you eat and prepare as you would any other radish.
A mix of tomatoes
A couple sweet onions
A couple cucumbers: Yes, we finally got cukes in the box…I’ve been waiting a while.
Mint: The little green bunch that smells like mint.  It seems like we use it most in mojitos…lime, sugar, rum, and this mint and you’re in business.
A good sized basil bunch: This should be enough to make some pesto.  We’re cheap, so we skip the pine nuts and use walnuts instead (
Arugula: The darker green bunch of leaves shaped like a long oak leaves
A couple little heads of lettuce (romaine, green leaf, or red leaf): It’s tough to get a big head of lettuce in the middle of summer, so I cut small…they are cute.
Sweet corn?  I was hunting as best as I could to find ripe sweet corn this morning, but only found a couple dozen.  Our cool temps are keeping ears from maturing.  I’m staking my reputation on getting corn in the box and on the farm stand next week!

Turkish-Style Cucumber Salad
I used to teach English in Trabzon, Turkey and this is their most common salad, pretty much using things right out of the box.  
A couple cucumbers, peeled and diced
A couple tomatoes, diced
Half a sweet onion, diced 
Fresh mint from one sprig, minced 
2 T olive oil 
1 T vinegar 
Mix ingredients in a bowl, let sit a bit to marinate, then serve. 

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