This past week we went on a crop tour of some of this seasons crops! Alan Zuchowksi,
who is growing for the CSA in Hadley, gave us a grand tour through his fields of open pollinated corn, heirloom wheat, spelt, and beans.
(Alan looks over his field notes to give us yield estimates)
As a sweet corn grower, Alan has an affinity for cultivating corn varieties, and this year there are many unique varieties to be excited about. The largest corn crop is the beautiful “Mandan Bride.” This is an ancient multi-colored Native American variety, and was a hit in the CSA share last year. Alan is also planting Hopi Blue, and Oaxacan Green Dent, which was grown for centuries by the Zapotec of southern Mexico and traditionally used for green flour tamales.
Mandan Bride Corn
The “Plimouth,” a flint corn that is new to the share this year, is great for making grits and pancakes. Alan procured this heritage variety from the Research and Development department of Plimouth Plantation. He has successfully multiplied the seed from two ears to a successful stand. Alan told us that eating grits made from Plimouth Corn gives him so much energy he could “jump over the barn roof”!
The Spelt and Turkey Red Wheat crops are beautiful, and despite challenging weather, the Turkey Red is growing golden and will produce a solid crop this season. The Black Turtle bean and Pinto bean crops are also coming along nicely.
Black Turtle Beans are thriving in the world famous Hadley loam and should make for a fruitful harvest.
So far all the crops are looking great! Keep an eye open for updates on the other CSA crops…and see a video below with Alan’s own words