Farmer John Writes: About Partnership

 In Farm News

Harvest Week 17, September 28th – October 1st

Your Box This Week – Saturday, October 1st

Please note: this summary is written before we pack your box—be aware that some guesswork is involved. At times, a bit of improvisation is required for selecting the contents of your share. As always, be sure to thoroughly wash all of your vegetables.

  • Spinach
  • Baby Choi
  • Kohlrabi
  • Winter Squash (maybe)
  • Broccoli Side Shoots
  • Daikon Radish
  • Daikon Radish Greens
  • Sweet Peppers
  • Eggplant
  • Lettuce
  • Hakurei Turnips (maybe)
  • Jalapeño and Paper Lantern Peppers
  • Anise Hyssop

Your Large Bunch of Daikon Greens
We realize that this week’s large bunch of daikon greens will not be familiar to some of our shareholders. These greens are challenging for stores to source, because they have a short shelf life. Since we are your CSA farm, we have the advantage of delivering these greens to you very soon after harvest. The leaves are an Asian delicacy. There are many culinary uses, such as in soups and kimchi, that you can learn about on the Internet and notably from your CSA recipe service Local Thyme. Find the instructions for signing up for Local Thyme at

Versatile Daikon
The daikon radish (or piece of a large daikon radish) that you receive is separated from its leaves (pompom), in order to fit both into your box. Still, this video Dancing with the White Radish may provide you with artistic ideas for your radish ensemble.

Your Spaghetti Squash (if you receive it this week)
Some of our spaghetti squash has green stripes or streaks or even a whole region of all green. We have opened up several of these cross-pollinated specimens, and feel that, overall, they still will provide a high quality squash experience. We ask ourselves, “would a shareholder want this?” knowing that many of our shareholders are more concerned about food waste and less concerned about a perfect cosmetic appearance. Of course, we strive to bring you beautiful produce, but there is sometimes a gray area where beauty diminishes, yet nutrition persists. And then, there are also shareholders who feel that beauty is enhanced by imperfections or inconsistencies.

Crop Update
Read the Week 16 Farm News for a detailed crop update.

Sorry–Extended Season Shares are no Longer Available
The below average yields of  broccoli, cabbage and Brussels sprouts mentioned in the Crop Update have made me close the door on extended season shares. Of course, this is a disappointment as we near the conclusion of such an abundant season. Farming ennobles, empowers, and humbles.



Farm Developments in 2016
In the previous four issues of Farm News, I wrote about four developments at Angelic Organics this year that have combined to make for a better season overall: Our Secret Growing Manager, how The Farm WhispersUnpacking the Mystery of the Pack, and last week Higher Pay; Less Payroll. This Week, I share a (bonus) fifth development.

Development #5: Farm Partnership
The fifth development, farm partnership, did not actually have its genesis in 2016 but has come to much fuller expression this year. The partnership is between my wife Haidy and myself.

Haidy and I met at an Anthroposophical conference in Järna, Sweden, near Stockholm, in the summer of 2009 on the last stop of my five-year tour with the film The Real Dirt on Farmer John. Shortly after, I went to hike the Italian Alps for a few days, where I found myself preoccupied with thoughts of Haidy. I knew I had to see her again before returning to the States. I flew to Helsinki, Finland, where she lived, and we spent many marvelous, mysterious days together watching Woody Allen movies, reading Rudolf Steiner and falling in love. A year and a half later, on Dec 4, 2010, we were married.

Some of you know that Haidy was severely debilitated with chronic Lyme disease for several years, and unable to be very involved in the operation of the farm during that time, as she was mostly bedridden. After searching far and wide for relief, and consulting numerous doctors, we discovered the Hansa Center in Wichita, Kansas, which employs a treatment regimen for Lyme without antibiotics. After a couple of years of intermittent one to two week treatments at the Hansa Center, Haidy’s health has improved considerably. Last season, Haidy was able to sporadically apply her standards of carefulness and thoroughness to the administrative side of the CSA.

This year, as Haidy’s health has improved further, she has been extremely effective with farm office activities. She demonstrates remarkable insights into how a business should be organized and managed, is competent and thorough in editing and communication, and has a rare aptitude for balancing the twin forces of perfectionism and mediocrity. And, she is forever striving to improve her skills and her effectiveness.

Haidy has no formal training in office administration or business management. I had no idea when I married this lovely woman almost six years ago, that embedded in her nature were these rare, instinctive talents for business.

I’ll add to the list above attributes that intersect with and reach beyond the realm of farm administration: innovative cook, imaginative designer, eloquent communicator, delightful travel companion, hard worker, entertaining companion, and thoroughly committed partner. Her interest in farming goes beyond administration: Haidy requests a tour of the fields every Sunday. Her interest in life goes beyond the visible: we share a deep and active engagement in the work of Rudolf Steiner.

Our shareholders are blessed with a most fabulous office manager.

I am blessed with a most fabulous partner.

Farmer John and Haidy in the Badlands

Ag News
USDA Weighing Approval for Non-browning GMO Apple
Excerpt: “The USDA left unexplored the question of potential changes to bacteria in the human digestive system from exposure to the GMO apple’s resistance to kanamycin. What is known is that resistance to antibiotics is a major concern among medical professionals.  Further afield, the apple’s GMO DNA will repeatedly be added to the orchard soil and soil bacteria as leaves and unharvested apples fall from trees each autumn. The environmental impacts are similarly unknown.”

Robotic Tractor
No cab; no steering wheel
“After the farmer triggers a command, the autonomous tractor can drive from a parking area along a private road to a field where it can commence its agricultural duties without any further human intervention.”
Note from Farmer John: I suppose that the farmer then goes back to bed.

Why won’t this farmer wave to me?

Let us Know  
Let Shelly know anything you’d like to share about this week’s box at email hidden; JavaScript is required. Please note the week and day of delivery, your site, when you picked up your box, and any comments about your box.

Please Fold Your Boxes Properly and Return Them
The farm re-uses the vegetable boxes. Flaps are easily torn when the boxes are dismantled improperly, and then the box bottom might later burst open with fresh, organic local produce heading towards the floor. Please carefully flatten your box and return it to your delivery site. If you receive home delivery, place it in the location where your box is delivered.

More from Shareholders
Visit us often at where we post exciting farm developments regularly, and shareholders post recipes, reviews tips, and photos. If you’re inspired to write a review, please do. We like knowing how our shareholders are experiencing the season.

Adventures at the Angelic Organics Learning Center
Angelic Organics Learning Center is an exciting and engaging place to learn about food, farming, and caring for the earth. Sign up for a hands-on farm workshop now at

Farmer John

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  • […] Large Bunch of Daikon Greens Read about your Daikon radish and your large bunch of Daikon Greens in Farm News, Week 17.  For artistic uses of your radish ensemble, consult the video Dancing with the White […]

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