Wow! We had great participation in the Tomato Taste Off and My Father's Dragon this past weekend. Thank you for enjoying local tomatoes, casting your vote and creating community with us.
So you want to know the winners of the 2nd Annual Tomato Taste Off? First let me say that we had 10 fabulous participating tomatoes and more than 130 people cast their votes for the sweetest, most tomato-ey, best texture and best looking. The good news is all of the tomatoes in the taste off were delicious! You can't go wrong when choosing local tomatoes this time of year. Get some at market and see for yourself.
While all of the tomatoes got votes, there were some clear winners. The Matina, grown by the Organic Seed Alliance (OSA) won the contest for sweetness as well as tomato-eyness. (I am sure some of our local farmers will grow this gem of a tomato next season.) The Esterina, grown by Finnriver Farm, won for texture and was a strong second for sweetness. The Indigo Cherry Drop, grown by Nash's Farm, won best looking with the Damsel, grown by Midori Farm, as a runner up.
Did you love tasting lots of varieties of tomatoes? OSA is hosting a free Community Field Day and Tasting on September 25th from 4 pm to 8 pm at their Research Farm at Finnriver Cidery, 124 Center Rd, Chimacum. The event celebrates the 3rd annual harvest at OSA's Washington research farm, which serves as the hub of OSA’s Pacific Northwest organic plant breeding, seed education, and variety trial projects. This event is open to all. RSVP through the event page on the OSA website.
You only have one more week to enjoy our mid-week farmers market. The closing day of the Port Townsend Wednesday Farmers Market season is September 13th. Join us from 2 pm to 6 pm on Polk Street in uptown Port Townsend for a fabulous selection of fresh, local produce, including delicious tomatoes, berries, melons, summer squash, flowers and more. Chef Arran Stark of Jefferson Healthcare will be at market hosting a cooking demonstration featuring fresh market produce. See you at market. ~ Amanda
Upcoming Market Events
- Wednesday, September 13, 2 pm-6 pm, Closing Day of the Port Townsend Wednesday Farmers Market season plus chef demo by Arran Stark starting at 3 pm, Polk Street
- Saturday, September 16, 9 am-2 pm, Farm Tour at the Port Townsend Saturday Farmers Market with over 30 local farmers, Tyler Street
- Chef demo by Arran Stark, 10 am
- Live music by Sons of Beaches 11:30 am-1:45 pm
- Sunday, September 17, 10 am- 2 pm, Farm Tour at the Chimacum Farmers Markets, Chimacum Corner Farmstand. Learn more about Jefferson County Farm Tour and other farm locations here.
Love to Our Vendors
"Love and admiration to Green Gables Garden. Carmen's love and knowledge of flowers is exemplary. Her bouquets are works of art, each one a beautiful expression of her passion for flowers."
"Dear Mountain Spirit, It's invaluable to a community to have a skilled herbalist. Thank you for your healing knowledge and remedies. My heart sings every time I see your booth at the market!"
"I had my first crepe today from La Crepe De Quimper. Each bite was a delightful pleasure for my taste buds! And, that cart is so tastefully outfitted. I applaud their skills in creating a traditional, wholesome explosion of flavor. Plus, the buckwheat savories are gluten free!"
From Our Vendors
Red Dog Farm- Summer meets Fall these days on the farm. Luscious strawberries, tomatoes, melons and cucumbers are coming on strong, as their hardier cousins of leeks, potatoes, onions, and carrots start to dominate the scene. It is a time of an explosion of color and tastes; truly a season worth eating well! There is still time to get strawberries by the flat and basil by the pound. Come on over to check out our 64 varieties of produce this weekend!
FARM TOUR VOLUNTEERS NEEDED!
NEW THIS YEAR: Free FARM TOUR BAG for all Volunteers!
Every year, thousands of excited visitors attend the Jefferson County Farm Tour to meet many of the people that are part of our county’s thriving food system. This year, 19 stops will be on the Tour featuring a variety of educational demonstrations, cheese making, apple tastings, fiber processing, orchard management, vegetable production, livestock, and more.
Farm Tour Shifts are as follows:
Saturday September 16th from 9:45am-1pm and/or 1- 4:15pm
Sunday September 17th from 9:45am-1pm and/or 1- 4:15pm
Shift responsibilities include:
- Welcome guests to farms
- Keep visitor count
- Offer directions
- Collect donations
To sign up, please contact:
The Reason Why You Need To Help Bees Survive
by Christy Erickson
To some people, bees are just icky, stinging bugs. However, bees play a vital role in our lives. Sadly, that’s rapidly becoming a problem as the bee population decreases. As much as 44% of bees worldwide have disappeared, and some bees in the US are now on the endangered species list. Here’s why you need bees — and a few ways you can help.
Image Source: Pixabay
Bees Help Create Food For You
When thinking about bees and food, you probably think about honey. But bees do a lot more than just make that sweet treat. As the BBC explains, around one-third of our food supply is dependent on pollination. That’s what crops need to reproduce so farmers can grow a new crop next year. Although there are a few animals to pollinate plants, bees are by far the most important. In fact, bees pollinate 70 types of crops, including strawberries, apples, almonds, coffee, and many more. If bees were to disappear, these crops would not create new seeds. That means your grocery store and farmers market would either be completely out of these foods, or they would charge a very high price due to their scarcity.
Even A Small Garden Helps Bees
But why are those bees disappearing? There are several causes, including the widespread use of pesticides. Another reason is the destruction of their habitats. As more land becomes developed, there are fewer flowers (and therefore less food) for bees.
That’s why starting a garden is a great way to help bees. You can provide a food oasis for bees right at home. The Honeybee Conservancy has several tips for creating a bee-friendly garden, including:
Select plants with single flowers (such as daisies and marigolds). These produce a lot of nectar which feeds the bees.
Focus on plants native to your region so bees are more likely to find them.
Include plants that flower at different times of the season so there’s always a food source.
If you don’t have a lot of room at your home, you can still create a garden. You just need to get a little bit creativewith some tips from Redfin.
Vertical gardening uses materials like old wooden pallets held upright. You then add some soils and plants up and down the pallet or planter.
Pots and window boxes are great ways to both create a small garden and make your home look better.
You can purchase a raised garden bed at many home improvement stores. Pick one that fits what space you have outside (like your porch or balcony).
Other Ways To Support Bees (And Yourself)
Gardens are fun and simple ways you can help support bee populations, but there are some others you can do. After all, helping the bees means helping yourself.
National Geographic shows that you need to go easy on chemicals like pesticides or weed killers. Both have been linked to hurting bee colonies, so focus instead on pulling weeds and using natural pest control like companion planting (planting species that naturally repel bugs like garlic or basil).
Buying organic also helps. Organic farmers don’t use chemicals either. By spending your money on organic produce, you make it financially attractive for other farmers to go organic.
You Need Bees
Unless you plan on only eating processed foods, you need bees. They pollinate so much of our food supply. That’s why it’s so important to build a garden, even if you don’t have much space. By avoiding chemicals and buying organic, you can help bees recover their numbers before it’s too late.
Market Location Exploration
We want your feedback! Please visit our website and participate in our customer survey. Let us know where you want to shop for fresh, local food. You can find the survey on the home page or here. Thank you for sharing your voice and support.