November 17th, 2018
27 Issue 22
Issue of The Wood
Wheelbarrow Full of Fall
thanks to JoAnne Hoefler of Jamesville, New York, for sharing with us
this great photo of her wheelbarrow-full crop of potatoes grown this
year from our organic seed. Read JoAnne's note posted in the Mailbox
section of this issue of the Wood Prairie
Joining JoAnne in this Mailbox
is yet another wonderful harvest photo - this one reminiscent of
Valentine's Day. It's that heart-shaped King Harry you'll see in the Mailbox
- a spud dug up from Leslie Poole's garden in Rockland, Maine. You'll
enjoy reading her dispatch.
We have recieved word from customers in
recent days that Friday's early East Coast snowstorm was expected to
extend as far south as New York City and New Jersey. That's pretty
early for the East and - no doubt in combination with the East's wet
will have contributed to the fact that some field work will just not
get done this Fall. Weeks ago we finished our outside work and are now
fully engaged inside as the snow piles up outside.
We'd like to express our
gratitude for your support and we wish you all the best for a very
Megan Gerritsen & Family
Wood Prairie Family Farm
|The Remarkable Tale of a
Fifty-Year Long Endeavor to Liberate Resilient Heirloom Plants Hidden
in the California Foothills.
Imagine the incredible value to
agriculture and society possessed by irrepressible varieties of
heirloom apples, pears, almonds, walnuts, olives - and more - which
have been untended since they were abandoned by mining communities 100
years ago, yet are still producing delicious crops without any sprays
of human attention.
characteristically beautiful article, the 'National Geographic'
reports on the lifelong work of our friend, Agrarian Elder Amigo
Cantisano, who has been identifying and saving exceptional plants bred
by relocated-mining-era French horticulturalist Felix Gillet. Waiting
for re-discovery are the rugged, nature-selected varieties whose
exceptional qualities are uniquely capable of leading a monumental
transition to a future of primarily organic production.
This is their story and we are
confident you will find it of great value.
Jim & Caleb
thousand feet up in the Sierra Nevada and a half-hour’s drive from the
paved road, a clearing opens at the edge of a forest. The clearing is
with pine, fir, and aspen, a dense palisade that shields its contents
rutted track that runs past its hidden gate. Inside, a meadow harbors
100 gnarled trees. It is early September, but the trees’ leaves are
and other colors peek out among them: apples crimson and scarlet, pears
and rusty, almonds and walnuts in globes of dull olive...
of the hidden orchard have remained productive for more than a century
any such assistance. Far from being a lost piece of history marooned on
mountain, the orchard is a treasure chest.
Last Call & FREE
for Organic Red Russian Garlic Seed!
After a very good season, our supply of fresh and
Red Russian Garlic
is now waning and we wanted
you to let you know it will soon be history! Great either for
use as seed in the garden – Fall is the best time to plant - or for
cooking purposes right now in your kitchen.
You can earn yourself a FREE 1 Lb. Sack of Organic
Red Russian Garlic
(Value $29.95) when your next order
totals just $99 or more. FREE Organic Red Russian Garlic Offer
ends 11:59 PM on Monday November 19. Please use Promo Code WPFF439
Your order and FREE Sack of Organic Red
must ship by December 7, 2018. Offer may
not be combined with other offers. Please place your order NOW while
our Organic Garlic supply lasts!
Here for Our Organic Wood Prairie Vegetable Seed.
Russian Garlic. Last Call for Great Garlic!
|Wood Prairie Family Farm Photos.
Local Road Sign to Number Nine Lake. This was
the year the benevolent State of Maine lavished attention on our modest
corner of potato town Bridgewater. Roads were worked on, road
shoulders were ditched and road signs magically popped up to enlighten
those uninformed. This new sign was posted at the only
intersection in the world where our half-mile long Kinney
Road, meets in a “T” both Bootfoot Road and Number Nine Road.
Taking the Nine Road, after eight miles you’d come to Number
Nine Lake, and then a mile past the lake, up to Number Nine
Mountain on the very western edge of our Township in the North Maine
From Atop Quoggy Jo Mountain. In a normal year,
we finish digging potatoes in early October. After getting
done digging, we have a tradition of celebrating Megan’s birthday by
taking the next Sunday to hike up Quoggy Jo Mountain in nearby
Aroostook State Park. Here, on a cool early October Sunday,
are Jim, Megan, Amy and Sarah enjoying our annual hike and the
incredible vistas of Fall leaves at their peak.
Wagon Load of
Pallet Boxes. In the days before Fall’s first
snowstorm, we put away farm equipment and clean up the yard to make it
easy to plow and pile the Winter’s snow. For harvesting and
handling our organic potatoes we use hundreds of wooden pallet
boxes. These ‘small’ 40” x 48” x 34” boxes have access doors
on one side and hold 1000 pounds of potatoes. They are the
boxes we sort into this time of year as we pre-grade our entire potato
crop. With the potato cellar now completely full, we backed this
extra wagonload into a nearby shed for the time being. In
month we’ll retrieve the wagon and unload its boxes for use in the
Cartons of Potatoes Shipping Out Via Fedex Ground. This
shot was taken Friday noontime. Old-timer ’Chub’ the cat
watches as cartons of seed potatoes await pickup, headed to all
corners of the country. We ship all through the
Winter. Virtually all of our competition are
re-sellers who simply buy potatoes from who-knows-where for re-sale
purposes, and only ship during a narrow window in the Spring.
We’re at the other end of the spectrum. We grow all of our own organic
Certified Seed Potatoes and we ship them directly to folks
like you – when you
need them – ten months
a year from September until the 4th of July.
Ten-Foot ‘Boss’ V-Blade Snowplow. It’s pretty
rare for family farmers to buy expensive, brand new
equipment. Fortunately, if you look hard enough you
can find very serviceable, good used equipment at exceptional
values. After years of patient searching, late last
Winter Caleb found this long-sought-after used heavy-duty wide
V-Plow. He recently completed modifying and
re-welding the mounting apparatus so the ‘new’ Boss plow would properly
mount onto our Ford F250 Diesel plowtruck. From inside the
cab he has hydraulic controls which raise and lower the plow; the
controls will also angle the plow left, right or
V-formation. Friday’s 6-8” snowfall was our third
snowstorm in the last week. With every storm, we have a big
area to plow so that trucks can get in and out to our packing shed all
winter long. Caleb – who took over plowing ten years ago when
he was 14 - confirms this new plow is better than anything we’ve ever
had to plow with. He’s already seen a reduction in plowing
time, thanks to this plow’s width and superior design, compared
to your typical straight blade eight-foot plow.
|Aldo Leopold on Consequences.
Parsnip and Parmesian Gratin.
Serves 8 to 10
4 lb Yukon
Gold potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 lb parsnips,
peeled, quartered lengthwise, cored and cut into 2-inch pieces
4 T unsalted butter, cut into pieces
8 oz creme fraiche or yogurt
4 oz mascarpone
1/4 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
Freshly ground black pepper
1 egg white, whipped until lightly foamy
1 oz finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (about 1 cup)
Put potatoes and parsnips in a pot, cover with water and add 1 T salt.
Bring to a boil and cook until the potatoes are tender, about 20
minutes. Drain the potatoes and parsnips, put them back into the pot
with butter, and coarsely mash with a potato masher. Fold in the creme
fraiche or yogurt, mascarpone, nutmeg, t tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper.
Fold in egg white. Transfer to a 9x13-inch baking dish.
Heat the oven to 375ºF. Sprinkle the gratin with the cheese, and bake
until the gratin is heated through and the top is golden, about 40
Photo by Angela Wotton.
Heart Shaped King Harry and Wheel Barrow Harvest.
Heart Shaped King
Hi Wood Prairie Family Farm!
I'm attaching two 'heart' shaped King
Harry potato photos that I thought you'd enjoy! Imagine my surprise
when I dug it up - I shall hate to eat it! If you think it would be a
fun photo for your catalog, feel free to use it.
I've just finished harvesting my small
patch of Wood Prairie Family Farm potatoes, although I've been
burrowing for a few every now and then for supper. Just want to say -
they are so delicious - the best potatoes I've ever planted and plan to
order more for next year. They were also the healthiest foliage I've
ever had and was fortunate that I had no pests this year, so they
stayed beautiful throughout the season. I didn't get a large crop but
then I didn't expect to as the midcoast was in another drought this
year and being on city water, I can't afford to water my gardens as
often as I should. Having said that, most of what I did harvest were
good size and not having a proper storage spot, I got what I needed.
I enjoyed the experimenter's special as
my garden is raised beds and not particularly conducive to planting
potatoes - at least for a little old lady! Being a back-yard gardener,
I really appreciate the opportunity to be able to choose four varieties
in a small amount.
I also wanted to mention that this is
the first year I've ever had potato fruit on my plants. I found them
fascinating and since I have no small children about, I chose to leave
them on the vine to admire.
Just an FYI - my maternal roots run
really deep in The County (and New Brunswick) - spots that rival the
coast in beauty. Every time I go up- country, I hate to come back
I've received my new catalog and will be
ordering at some point.
Great shot! King Harry is famous
for having lots of "seed balls."
Jim & Caleb
Wheel Barrow Harvest
See attached - I harvest all my potatoes & so happy with the
Best ever & yummy too.
Thanks for your wonderful starter seeds & answering my many
photo of your Wheel Barrow Harvest! So glad our seed did well for you.
Jim & Caleb.
|Wood Prairie Farm Quick
Caleb & Jim
& Megan Gerritsen
Prairie Family Farm
429 - 9765
Certified Organic, From Farm to Mailbox