Did you know that we put months of planning into our gardens each year? It’s not as easy as just picking out some seeds, and throwing them in the ground for us. We plant multiple gardens every season, full of lively vigorous plants. Starting in January every year, we have a Garden Planning Meeting as a team. In February we order the seeds from some trusted seed companies.Happily seeds were a bit easier to purchase in 2021 than last year! Some of the plants are started as garden transplants at locally operated Colonial Farms Nursery. Other items we just start from seed in the ground. We depend on our garden produce to source our veggies for the farm market and our new CSA delivery program. We strive to have as much homegrown produce as possible in our market and try to offer bulk discounts on items in bushel amounts. You’ll notice we put the location each item is from in the bottom right corner of our price sign. That’s how you know if it’s Orr’s or Locally grown.
Harvest has begun and is gradually increasing by the day. Once the gardens start producing, we pick them every other day. Asparagus is our first crop we pick, and lasts about 4 weeks. A few weeks later, the other plants start producing, and things get crazy for the remainder of the season. Peppers, eggplant, squash, zucchini, cucumbers, and tomatoes are just some of the things we grow. Once the gardens have been picked, we take the produce into the market, and prepare it to sell. All of the veggies we pick get washed prior to going on the sales floor. As we wash, we also sort through everything to ensure we’ve got the best of the best. Produce also has to be entered into our inventory so that you can purchase it online for curbside delivery.
There are several ways to get your fix of our delicious veggies. Simply stop in the market, browse the rainbow of colors, and find what’s best for your appetite. You can also be put on our waiting list if you’re looking for a specific variety or a large amount of an item. Once you’re on the list, you get called as soon as we pick the crop, and have enough to fulfil your order. Larger quantities are nice for canning, or freezing. Preserving your favorite veggie is a good way to have that fresh treat, all year long. Who doesn’t love to pull out some frozen peppers in the middle of winter and make a fresh meal?
We’ve started to pick the gardens for the year. If you stop in the market now, you’ll find eggplant, green bell peppers, jalapenos, yellow squash, zucchini, and green cabbage. Does eggplant sound interesting, but, afraid to try it, or don’t know how to make it? Here’s a great article with photos and video called “How to prepare eggplant for cooking” by Good Housekeeping. Eating healthy doesn’t have to be elaborate. My favorite thing to do with fresh garden veggies is so easy, anyone can do it. Cut up all your ingredients, season to taste, add some EVOO, and throw it on the grill until tender. Pair with some local steak from our freezer section, and you’ve got yourself a simple summer time meal.
Here’s to keeping it fresh and delicious this summer!