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Category Weekly-Update

New Sign Ups ready for 2015!

Posted on by Tim Livingstone

We are ready to start taking sign ups for this coming summer season.  We are also offering eggs and meat in the Fredericton and Woodstock areas during the spring months until our veggies start up again.  Here is a summary of we are offering but there is much more information under the Our Box Options tab of our website.

Strawberry Hill Farm Veggie Box:  We plan this box to be similar to what we have sent over the last three seasons.  This will be available at all our pick up locations.

Pasture Raised Organic Eggs:  These are sold by the dozen or half dozen weekly.  The quota system in NB limits the number of hens we can keep so we always sell out of eggs early for delivery during our summer fall season.  Since we sell out, for this season we reserve the eggs for only those who purchase veggies.  Eggs are available to all our pick up locations.

Spring Eggs:  We are offering eggs every two weeks through the spring season.  Anyone who is ordering eggs can also add on meats to come with their eggs.  This option is only available for pick up from the Canadian Tire on Smythe Street in Fredericton.

Spring Custom Meat Orders:  We are offering that those of you who would like to order meats from our website during the spring season can continue to do so even if you don't want to order eggs.  There is no money down for this option, but it puts you on the list so you get the bi-weekly reminders and can order from our website.  This is available for pick up from the Canadian Tire on Smythe Street in Fredericton.

Chicken Box:  We are offering a monthly or bi-weekly chicken box for those who eat chicken often.  This gives a substantial discount over buying by the individual chicken.  This is available for pick up from the Canadian Tire on Smythe Street in Fredericton.  We would like to offer it in Moncton but don't have a pick up location yet.  We will let you know if a Moncton location becomes available.

 

Pork/Chicken Box:  We are offering a monthly or bi-weekly combo pork/chicken box.  This box option contains chicken, sausage, and one of a variety of other pork cuts.  This gives a substantial discount over buying by the individual piece and is available for pick up from the Canadian Tire on Smythe Street in Fredericton.  We will let you know if a Moncton location becomes available.

 

Our box customers always get first priority and get the best diversity and overall prices for our products.

If you would like to sign up for one of our box options simply click on this link or go to the "Sign Up" tab from our website.

We also supply our products to the following Retail outlets.  They order as they see demand so if they don't have something you want, simply ask them.  The more you ask and buy the better you will be served!

Woodstock - Our roadside stand just outside town where all products are available every Friday afternoon.

Woodstock - Simply for Life has a limited number of our vegetables available in season

Moncton - Corn Crib on Mountain Road has our pasture raised organic chicken and pork

Moncton - Dolma Foods is carrying our organic sweet potatoes

Moncton - Sequoia Natural and Organic has a small amount of our pork and possibly some chicken.

Fredericton - True Food Organics has our organic pork, chicken, eggs, and a few vegetables including our delicious carrots.

Fredericton - Aura Whole Foods has our organic pork, and chicken and sometimes our eggs.

Saint John - We are working on a location here and will keep you updated.

We are busy making plans, ordering seeds, and lining up the help we need so that this can be our best season yet.  We look forward to continuing to serve all our valued customers and constantly improving the quality of our food products and our customer service.  If you have any feedback or suggestions for improvement, we would love to hear from you.  Just email me at strawberryhf@gmail.com or contact us by using one of the other methods posted on our website under the Contact Us page.



Holiday Projects

Posted on by Tim Livingstone

We appreciated the chance to slow down over the holidays and spend time with family and friends.  We did do some work as well because work is never done on the farm. 

The snow melted enough that we were able to get about 100 more pounds of kale before this cold snap this week.  Kirsten and I went down in an afternoon and picked through to get the last good kale that was there.

Our squash got cold damage in the field in September.  As a result it is not storing well.  We have the last of the spaghetti squash coming this week and we hope to have one shipment of Delicata squash later on.  We also have a shipment of frozen cut up chunks of butternut squash for later on but we will have to send more sweet potatoes and more spinach and salad mix than in the past due to the reduced amount of squash.  We hope no one minds the adjustments and we are making plans to bring squash in sooner and change our curing methods to hopefully prolong its winter storage next year.


The pigs and cows have gotten used to each other now.  We have a small pen aside from the cows where the pigs can make a hay nest to keep warm.  They had trouble making their nest in the cow pen because the cows would eat the hay.  Having their own pen while still being able to exercise in the much larger cow pen seems to be working well.

 

3 years ago we got a six month old colt from our neighbor.  He was away for a couple of months getting trained but over the holiday break Nollie and I were able to bring him back.  He still needs quite a bit of training which Nollie will continue here on our farm but he can be ridden and I'm hoping he will be able to help us herd cows next summer.

 

 

 

Here he is getting acquainted with one of the pigs.  Surprisingly he has accepted them much better than the cows did.

 

 

 

 

When it is cold out, what a better way to keep warm then to have your own private naturally heated bed.....



Last Box for 2014

Posted on by Tim Livingstone

This week is the last delivery week for 2014.  Our next boxes will be coming January 8 & 9.  We are learning more each year about growing winter greens in the greenhouse and coldframes. Spinach is looking great - I just wish we had more of it.  This year's spinach was started as transplants and is growing on clear plastic mulch to help hold heat in the soil and get the most from every bit of heat and light in the winter.

Salad mix is doing well too.  We have a wood stove in the greenhouse which we run when the outside temperature is mild.  It costs much less to keep the greenhouse at 10 when it is 0 out then it would cost to keep it at 10 when it is -25. When it is really cold outside, we cover the plants in the greenhouse with insulating blankets and just heat enough to keep the greenhouse above -15 Celsius.  This way we can have hardy winter greens all season for a reasonable cost. 

The last of our pigs have gone to the butcher except for 2.  The pigs did really well for us again this year and Kirsten's sausage recipes have proven to be popular.  We now have 3 stores in Fredericton, and one in Moncton carrying our sausage in addition to our stand which is open Friday afternoons each week.

We have saved 2 guilts (young female pigs) and are planning to try letting them each have a litter of pigs next spring.  One of my earliest experiences with animals giving birth was when a huge pig that my uncle had gave birth to a litter of piglets.  This was not a very pleasant experience so I've been quite reserved about trying it here.   It is difficult for us to find organic piglets though, so I've talked with quite a few people and think it may be possible to have piglets born in a more natural way here on the farm and am hoping we will have more pleasant memories...

My intention was to have the guilts live in the barn with the cows but this is proving a little more difficult then I expected because the cows are scared of the pigs!  Once I let the pigs out, the cows go to the far end of the pasture and won't come into the barn.  Even after the pigs were back in their pen, some of the cows - especially this year's black calves - were very timid about coming back in.

I'm letting the pigs out for a couple hours a day and they seem to be getting along better.  I'm hoping they will be able to live together peacefully within a week or two.



Winter is here...

Posted on by Tim Livingstone

We've been on quite a weather roller coaster for the last month. We have pretty much finished harvest except a little more kale if the weather warms and snow melts again.  We are now harvesting salad mix from one of the tunnels making the mix for this week of particularly good quality.

We are still finishing up for winter but overall things are coming well and we look forward to being able to slow down just a little over the holiday period.  

Our bus is fuller than ever as it leaves the farm doing deliveries.  It also seems that as the weather cools down, people are ready to eat more meat - we have lots of pasture raised organic pork, chicken, and beef so this is great to see.  These sales will help to support our family and pay the bills over the winter months.

 



Start of Winter Season!

Posted on by Tim Livingstone

I planted extra carrots this summer then rented a carrot harvester to do our carrot harvest this fall but the rain and snow made it so we could not harvest with the machine.  Kirsten's parents, my parents, and our whole crew pitched in to help harvest the carrots by hand - many from under the snow.  It was a cold muddy job but we did get all we needed for orders.  There are still some left in the ground that we were unable to harvest but I guess this is one of the risks of farming....  

I had to speak at the ACORN organic conference so spent the last three days in Halifax.  It was a great time to meat other farmers and friends and learn new things to try next year.  Kirsten and the crew kindly kept working and got lots done while I was away.  This included covering the strawberries with white cover as you can see above.  This cover is supposed to work better than the typical straw cover.

 

We have winter greens in a couple of greenhouses this year and hope to be able to supply something green in your boxes all winter long.  It looks like we have a great selection of items for the winter boxes to give good variety and value.

Our winter season starts this week.  We have simplified our winter program a bit this year and hope it will be a bit more manageable.  We work very hard in the summer so would like to be able to have a little break over the winter and perhaps even take a trip with the kids over the holidays.  

We are doing the regular winter veggie boxes plus add on meats for the bus customers in Fredericton.  The rest of our meats we will be selling wholesale to as many of the stores hosting pick up locations as possible.  For those not picking up at our bus, ask the pick up location for our meats.  Our farm stand will also be open every Friday from noon to 6:00 and will be stocked with veggies, eggs and meats.