Monday, January 27

Greetings from Food Field! Here’s a brief update on the farm while we wait out another Polar Vortex.  Unfortunately it hasn't been a winter for growing greens, even with hoop houses to bring some daytime thaws.  Fish surfaced in the pond last week to come out of hibernation for a brief bite to eat—-we hope they’ll be harvest-size sometime later this year.  Chickens and ducks have been troopers and continue laying eggs daily.  And the Ark is finally move-in-ready now that solar panels are wired and construction is complete!

Do you want to try out homesteading for a few weeks and enjoy the serenity of a quiet cabin and a cozy fire-—without leaving the big city?  We are looking for someone to take care of the farm from mid-February to early March while Noah is away; duties include feeding the chickens, ducks, and wood-burner, collecting & delivering eggs, and possible snow shoveling.  Email us if this sounds like the stay-cation of your dreams!

Several of you have asked about this year’s CSA.  For 2014 we will be joining with City Commons, a cooperative of Detroit farmers, to offer more shares and more variety—you’ll get plenty of vegetables from Food Field along with produce from Singing Tree Garden, Vinewood Knoll and other urban farms.  The CSA will run 20 weeks starting mid-June with many of the same options you’re familiar with-—full and half shares, Tuesday and Saturday pickups, season extension—-plus optional flower shares and several pickup locations.  You can check out the details and sign up here or wait for updates soon including pickup times at Food Field and payment options with EBT.

Until then, you can taste Food Field eggs at Supino pizzeria, or stop by Traffic Jam & Snug for some garlicky goodness ... and this spring we'll open a farm stand here on Lawrence for all the fresh greens we can make available. Thanks and stay warm out there... 

Sunday, December 8

The Weeds of Detroit 2014 calendar from Food Field is now available! Keep track of your life in this handy planner and enjoy 52 weeks of hand-drawn illustrations and information. Never worry about low batteries or lost service--all you need's right here on paper. Calendars are $15. You can buy yours here, from our friends at Detroit Farm & Garden, or email peckproduce@gmail.com to pick one up at the farm.

 

Merch
Comments:

Monday, October 21

 

It was a great weekend at Ford Field Food Field!  Thanks to Jeff McCabe’s Nifty Hoops (and some great volunteers) for building a new 156-foot movable hoop house, soon to be full of spinach, arugula and spicy greens for the winter.  This was made possible by a USDA grant to boost season extension in Wayne County—keep your eyes out for more hoops in Hamtramck, the North End and elsewhere, and get ready for a food sovereign Detroit in our future.

Next door, our other hoop house is also planted for winter and the fish pond is ready to go; 600 catfish and blue gill are arriving next Monday the 28th!  They’ll get to share the pond with our ducks once we move them in to warmer quarters soon.  Chickens continue pumping out eggs, turkeys are putting on weight, and our bees are donating some honey to the larder.  This week we’ll be taking advantage of this year’s bumper crop of apples and pressing cider.  The garlic’s been sorted, beans have been shelled, and we could really use that root cellar right about now…

Help take some of this bounty off our hands and sign up for Food Field’s Holiday CSA Share.  It will run for 5 weeks starting November 19; cost is $150 and pickup is at the farm (or $20 more for delivery in the area).  You’ll get such items as sweet potatoes, squash, garlic, onions, salad greens, carrots and other vegetables plus preserved tomatoes, pickles, salsa & other goodies.  Don’t follow the crowds to the supermarket for Thanksgiving, Hanukkah & Christmas—we’ve got everything you need!  Download the signup form here or email peckproduce@gmail.com with any questions.

We’re still at Eastern Market for a couple more weeks so come out and see us there in Shed 3 tomorrow and next Tuesday (9AM-3PM).  Big thanks to regular volunteers Mike and Klara for help running the table, and also to Aaron, Annie, Lizzy, Zephyr and others back on the farm.  And congrats to Brooke Webber and Jonathan Patty on their new gig running the Lilli Pilli Health Bar!  They put on a wonderful farm-to-table dinner here last month, of which there will be more to come next year.  (If you have photos from the dinner, we’d love to see them!)

Monday, September 2

Happy Labor Day! Of course farmers don't get this day off, especially with a busy Tuesday market to prepare for (come see us in Shed 2 in our new stall next to MSU Extension).

You're invited to a special farm-to-table dinner at Food Field on September 21 & 22 (Saturday & Sunday), with multiple courses featuring our own produce and farm products. Dinner starts at 6:30 PM both days with a tour of the farm at 5:30. We'll have the farm all cleaned up and many fall crops coming in, with outdoor seating under the maples, special lighting and live music.  Tickets are available now on a sliding scale from $40-100.  You can register here and be sure to include your information and which day you'll be dining!

 

 

Thursday, July 18

If you follow our Facebook page then you know that unfortunately the farm was burgled last Sunday night.  The thieves cut through steel locks on our storage unit and took most of our equipment and tools including a generator, mower, power tool set, chainsaws, batteries, grinder, propane torch, farm cart and many other items.  It's a sad fact that this is the risk for anyone living or doing business in our city, and until now we had been lucky to suffer minimal losses thanks to watchful neighbors and police.  While we don't know yet if insurance will cover any of our losses, we know there is a long list of things needing replacement (some more immediately than others).  I've added these to our Wish List for the farm--please take a look over it and consider donating any surplus or unused items you might have available.  We're also in need of someone with welding skills and equipment to fashion a new door locking mechanism.

Thanks very much to Melinda, Jenelle, Carrie, Ashley, Maribeth and many others who've already offered support!

broken locks

Sunday, June 30

It's been another wet month (unlike last June, when it failed to rain a single day).  Our water tanks are full to the brim, and the garlic soaking up as much as it can handle before harvest time in July.  The ducks are thrilled with so many puddles to splash in, though the grapes and other crops may be feeling a little soggy.  The chicken run is full again with 40 new hens that will start laying this summer.  All the rain's saved us much time watering the fruit trees and new fields, where squash, melons, popcorn and sweet clover are coming up nicely.  We picked our first ripe quart of tomatoes this week, and also got a taste of a few ripe cherries and strawberries.  Bindweed (and other enemies) continue to grow almost as fast as our to-do list.

CSA shares are still available if you missed the beginning of the season.  The cost is the full share ($450) minus $20 for each week missed (3 so far).  Don't get stuck eating bland red tomatoes and green beans this summer--join now!

We also have decals, postcards, recipes and t-shirts for sale if you didn't get one in our fundraiser earlier this year.  Get it here or find us at the market--we're at Eastern Market Tuesdays starting July 9 and downtown at Lafayette Greens Thursdays (except this July 4)!

 

Merch
Some photos from the farm in June:

Wednesday, May 22

We've been busy this month!  April's neverending rain gave way to daily sunny skies and summer temperatures, and it's been a race to keep up with the grass, thistle and bindweed to get our crops in the ground on time.  The hoop house is a jungle again of thriving salad greens, tomato plants, seedlings, lamb's quarters, and ... mosquitoes.  Outside our garlic continues to shoot up, while we wait impatiently for the peas, fava beans, carrots, beets, radishes, turnips, spicy greens, and more to grow.  We've put in hundreds of heirloom tomato transplants, kale, broccoli and cabbage, hundreds of feet of onions and potatoes, and replaced 20 fruit trees with healthy new apples and pears.  Strawberries and grapes are now leafing out as well, and we'll have sweet potatoes to plug in later this week.  It wouldn't be spring without our new annual tradition: the tractor busting its driveshaft while mowing!  How long will it take to repair this time?  We're psyched to try out our new (old) Kubota this weekend, just as soon as we fix the battery, the brush mower, the plow hitch and the tiller.

We're sure you've been busy too, but now's the time to finally send in your CSA signup sheet you forgot earlier!  We are still accepting new members before we start in June; find the info you need right here on the CSA page.  Who will help us eat all this kale?

 

Sunday, March 31

We made it! We've been blown away by the generosity demonstrated on our fundraising campaign: thanks to you all we've met our goal of $5,000 to get our aquaponics system running this spring. In the next few weeks we'll be installing solar power, ordering fish, building a cooler and getting more ducks (plus planting and everything else of course).  Thanks so much to all who contributed and hold on while we order the shirts, stickers and other perks you signed up for (we'll be in touch shortly to specify what items you chose)!

The campaign stills runs for one more week so it's not too late! Anything raised beyond our goal will go toward another important expense: bringing down up to a dozen dead ash trees looming over our orchard and neighbors' homes and power lines. We'll use all that wood to heat the house for years to come and to fuel perennial hugelkultur beds across the orchard starting this year.

Sunday, March 24

Happy Easter!  (Every day is Easter at Food Field)

As Alex noted this week on our Indiegogo campaign, we've had a big change of plans regarding our chicken flock. Some mysterious animal got its way into our coop and wreaked havoc recently, cutting our flock down from nearly 40 to just 6. We were lucky to have a number of friends on hand to help round up the survivors and do the bloody work of culling the most wounded. We've yet to determine the culprit (a fence-climbing dog? a diurnal and especially savage opossum?) but we'll be taking extra measures to rebuild and fortify their fence before restocking the coop this spring.

As this deathly holiday approaches, take note that we still have lots of eggs for sale! Stock up this week for your Easter egg needs ($3 a dozen).

On a brighter note, our ducks have stayed safe and sound in the hoop house and have finally started laying regularly (turns out those earlier "duck eggs" were just giant chicken eggs!). We'll be quintupling their numbers this spring since they're so nice to have around. A dozen duck eggs will go to the next CSA member to get in their signup form & payment!

Wednesday, March 6

It’s almost that time of year again—yes, Daylight Savings Time (don’t forget to change your clocks this weekend).  It’s also time for us to get planting and stock our new fish pond, and we need your help!  Today we’re launching our crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo to fund the fish and equipment we need to make this project a success.  We hope to raise at least $5,000 in the next 31 days.  In return for contributions to the project we have a number of perks to offer, ranging from Food Field t-shirts and postcards to special on-farm dinners and events to be had later this year.  Big thanks to Collin McLaughlin for putting together our promo video on short notice!

http://igg.me/at/foodfield/x/2533449

Please take a minute to check out our campaign and spread the word to any friends, family and networks who may be interested in supporting us.

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