2012 CSA Shares Available

For 2012′s CSA, we are restructuring our offerings quite a bit, based on feedback from 2011, and things we learned in our first year of CSA farming  (in which we pretty-much scrapped the announced plan, in favor of what we learned from folks’ questions about our shares).  More description and reasoning below.  For now, we’ll get right to the offerings.

We have three types of shares this year. 

  • Main Season Share – $250, a summer-only share, running 16 weeks, from May 26 through September 15 (Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day Weekend), sized for a 2-adult family.  Pickup will be available at the Culver Farmer’s Market on Saturdays from 8-noon, or at our farm on Tuesday evenings from 5-7.  The share will consist of a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, and herbs designed to support all of your fresh, local, seasonal produce needs for each week. 6 shares available.
  • Bookend Share- $40 spring, $100 fall.  Both spring and fall are sized for a 2-adult family. The spring bookend share will consist mostly of  salad greens, radishes, peas, and other cool-weather crops.  Its exact beginning date will depend on the season’s weather, and it will end when the main season share begins.  In the cool, wet spring of 2011, it would have been 3 weeks.  In 2010, it would have been 6.  The fall bookend share will consist of more salad greens, radishes, kale, cabbage, any fall cool-season crops that we succeed with (tends to be iffy in northern Indiana), and late-season staples and storage crops like potatoes, rutabaga, turnips, pumpkins and winter squash, etc.  All the things that make fall yummy.  It will run from the end of the main season share until weather and supplies end the harvest, most likely early- to mid-December.  Pickup for both will be on Saturdays, at the Culver farmers’ market during the market season (first Saturday in May to the second Saturday in October), and on our farm before and after the market season.  2 spring and 3 fall shares available.
  • Work Share- 2-3ish hours of help at the farm per week, running any week in which you work and there is a harvest available.  Will mostly consist of weeding and harvest help on Fridays, but exact terms will be negotiable.  We’ll do our best to make the work varied and interesting.  Availability will vary, and be offered only via interview.  Share size will be negotiable, but probably sized for your family.  Most likely, you’ll harvest your own share as part of your work.

Payment can be made via check or PayPal (yes, you can use a credit card via PayPal).  A 10% discount is available for shares paid for before January 6.  Contact us via the contact us page to order your share!

Questions?

What’s with the smaller share size?

We learned a lot about our local market last year (remember, from the business plan, we didn’t actually intend to start our CSA until this season, but couldn’t really get good information from folks without really selling some shares).  Nearly everyone wanted a “half-share” when we were sizing our shares for a 4-person family. 

While we had intended to eventually offer multiple slicings and dicings of shares, we didn’t want to complicate things such that we were spending more time managing information than growing food. We didn’t sell any shares until we decided to make the standard share size smaller.  Then we rapidly sold all of them.  In one case, a larger family simply bought 3 of the new half-sized shares.  We packed all three in the same tub each week, so they didn’t need to lug 3 containers back and forth. Everyone was happy.  Larger families can do the same this year.

What’s with the shorter main season shares and bookend shares thing?

The Culver area consists of essentially 2 demographics.  One group has summer or weekend homes here, and lives elsewhere the rest of the time.  The other lives her year ’round.  The first group tends to be more attuned to the CSA model, and often has a CSA share at their other home, usually in a more urban area where the model is more common.  They typically are only in Culver in the summer, and so the portions of a share that fall before Memorial Day or after Labor Day are not as useful to them (since they’re not here to partake of the goodies).   They can purchase just a main season share, and get fresh, local, Certified Naturally Grown produce while they are here. 

Meanwhile, the group that spends all year here tends to want produce early and late in the season.  A fair percentage actually doesn’t care too much about summer vegetables, because they grow their own garden.  Some local locavores could order both bookend shares as well as a main season share to get the maximum benefit of the season.  Perhaps they could spread the cost of the season out by ordering the spring bookend now, the summer shortly before Memorial Day, and the fall bookend late in the season, rather than spending $390 all at once.  Others could order just the two bookend shares and allow their own garden to fill out the summer. 

So, basically, both the smaller share size, and the different types of shares allow folks more flexibility to match their own produce needs.

What is this CSA thing you’re blathering about?

I babbled a little about CSA in general in my 2011 CSA share announcement, but here are some better resources on the concept in general.  Yeah, someday I’m going to write up that brochure…

2 Responses to “2012 CSA Shares Available”

  1. Jessica says:

    Okay, I tried the “contact us” link, but got 404 error. So, hopefully you will see this. I am checking to see the availability of one of your spring shares? We are moving from Culver in June, so we can’t do our own garden, but are interested if you still have available shares. Thanks so much.
    Jessica

  2. Chad says:

    We do still have shares available. I’ll contact you soon, probably Monday, once we survive the military school band festival and our very ill alpaca.

    Not sure why you had problems with the contact link. It works for me, so it may depend on where you are when you click on it. I’ll
    Check the logs, or move to the new design soon…

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