Thursday, June 14, 2018

Midsummer Bites Festival

Market List

 Grass Fed Green Onions, SuperFood Salad Mix, Bright Lights Swiss Chard, Non GMO Chicken Eggs and it's
 the LAST week for Tomato Plants
There will be 3 kinds of Granola,









Midsummer Bites Dream Festival at Tower Grove this Saturday. We will be there from 8-3- your time. Really we will be there from 6-4 but that's just what it takes to get ready for you. Besides the regular set of vendors, there will be many Food and Beer Trucks, Crafters and all total, I hear over 100 vendors. As I posted last week, we will have a promotional cup with our logo on Saturday. 5.00 will get you 2 fills and 1.00 lemonades for the rest of the Season when you bring your cup back. It's a great deal.
We are shooting next week for Salsa. It's not for sure yet but that's the plan.

So Rayven and I will see you Saturday. Bill will come later with Jessie. So we'll have the full crew.

Until then,

God's Blessings on you and yours

TTFN

Bill, Sam, Rayven and Jessie


Friday, June 8, 2018

In the Ground

Market List- Green Onions, SuperFood Salad Mix, Purslane, Grass Fed Lamb, Chicken Eggs from non GMO and Local Feed and Swiss Chard
This will be the last week we bring all the tomato plants. Here is our remaining list; Black from Tula, Paul Robeson, Black Plum, Arkansas Traveler, Bradley, Pantano Romanesco, Mortgage Lifter, Caspian Pink, Black Krim, Purple Carbon, Sun Sugar, Washington Cherry, Sugar Plum, Chocolate Cherry, Tommy Toes, Japanese Black Trifle, Lemon Boy, Pink Girl, Amish Paste, Green Zebra, Cherokee Green and more. We also have Anaheim Peppers, Tomatillos and Parsley

We have been putting these tomatoes into the ground here at the Farm. So far we have about 450 planted. The earlier ones planted outside the growing spaces are producing already. Yesterday we got our first ripe tomato and we have more on the vines. I would say 2 or 3 weekends before Salsa time. 

SO next weekend is the big Festival at Tower Grove Market. It will be a long day for us Vendors but it will probably be a flash for you all with the fun that they have planned. 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
 A Midsummer Bites Food Dream 
Lots of Food Trucks, Beer, Juices... I still haven't gotten my Bloody Mary yet though. I can keep dreaming right? Bands too. We will have a Promotion ourselves. We have ordered 100 cups with our logo and the Festival date and name on it. It's 5.00 but you get 2 free refills that day and 1.00 lemonade for the rest of the summer when you bring the cup back to the market. 

Tomorrow, another chance of a storm and 90 degrees again. We'll see you there. 

God's blessings on you and yours, 

TTFN, 

Sam, Bill and Rayven




Thursday, May 31, 2018

Tomato Planting Time



Market List:

SuperFood Salad Mix, 
Purslane, Swiss Chard, 
Green Onions, Tomato, Pepper and Herb Plants, Grass Fed Lamb, Lambsquarter for cooking,

GARLIC SCAPES AND
 SNOW PEAS











So last week I came home from the Market to the raised, shaped beds in the garden and Monday we started putting up the tomato fences. We grow the tomatoes on cattle panels and rolled rebar. It keeps them up off of the ground and the vines are ran through the squares. It takes a little bit of time to get them up but once they are, it's smooth sailing. The beds are 40 inches wide. Each side of the bed, the tomatoes are planted 2 ft. apart and 2 ft. across from each other. Weed fabric goes in between the rows which is opposite of the way most farmers do it. Most like to lay the fabric over the beds and cut holes into it to plant the tomatoes into it. I tried it 2 years that way but I was just not satisfied with this. I like to grow Flowers and Herbs in between my rows and I just didn't think that I was able to get the tomatoes in deep enough. So last year we started reversing it. 
At this point, we have Early Girl, Lemon Boy, Japanese Black Trifele and Cherokee Green in the blocks and beds around the Greenhouse with fruit on them. In the new garden rows we have Azoychka Russian, Bradley, Pink Girl, Rutgers, Pork Chop, Vintage Wine, Pantano Romanesco, Chocolate Chestnut, Sugar Plum, SunSugar and Snow Fairy. Still left to plant we have Arkansas Traveler, Black from Tula, Paul Robeson, Purple Carbon, Caspian Pink, Violet Jasper, Chocolate Cherry, Washington Cherry, Black Plum, Black Krim and more. I can't think of all of the rest. 
I think this will be a fab tomato year. I know all you salsa fans are hoping this will be the case. We've got some tennis ball size tomatoes already. This is super unusual for this time of the year and outside to top it off. 

Saturday will be 90 again. It's for sure a crazy Spring. We'll see you @tgfarmersmarket. Don't forget that in 2 weeks we will have a long Market, a Festival on June 16th. We will probably be having a Lemonade promotion at our booth but I personally am hoping for Bloody Marys. I know that there will be beer and food trucks, way more than normal. There should be over 100 vendors I hear. 
So we'll see you at the Park on Saturday. 

God's blessings on you and yours, 

TTFN

Sam, Bill, Rayven and Jessie




Thursday, May 24, 2018

Heated Up and Headed Out

Market List:

LAMB: Chumps, Shoulder and Leg Steaks, Chops, Shanks and Ribs. 
SuperFood Salad Mix, Scallions, Purslane and Arugula


Rayven has flown in again for a few weeks but I am sad to say that it is on the way to her family's new home in Vermont. Our lives will really change not having them within a couple of hours of us. No more the kids just running out for a week or weekend. I am very happy for them and so proud of their mom; Dana but I will so miss them. 
I am hoping the distance won't keep us apart but it is a really hard idea to wrap my mind around. Many of you know that Rayven and her sister Jade have volunteered around here for 3 Summers. Ember helps out but was jealously awaiting her turn. The boys are still too young but add a lot of joy around the farm with all of their excitement of all the animals and things happening. It's a great thing in this day and age to be around kids who are interested in more than their phones and touching those lives with your way of life. Seeing them taste and enjoy food you've grown and helping you grow it. 


So the goose just hatched out the one gosling. She did not do such a great job at her first try, but it's very cute. We have tomatoes on the few vines we have planted.
Saturday while I am at Market Billy will be using the bed shaper so we can put the rest of the garden. 90 Degrees again. Another hot one, it's such a pain having to go get the van and load up after everything is over instead of as we go along. Ugh. So hot after all of that. Still I will be so excited to get home and see that the garden is dry enough and ready to plant.

That's it for now. We'll see you Saturday.

God's Blessings on you and yours,

TTFN

Sam, Bill, Rayven and Jessie

  

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Cracking,Quacking and Honking and Hissing








Market List- Purslane, Arugula,
 SuperFood Salad Mix and
Scallions, 
25+ varieties of Heirloom tomato plants and 3 Hybrids. 
Everything grown by Certified Naturally Grown standards which are higher than Organic. 





Wednesday we had a little excitement in the henhouse. Jessie who is staying with us, was helping to gather the eggs when she reached into the nesting box and pulled out this;


















Thursday, May 10, 2018

Straight into Summer

Market List
Sassy Salad Mix with the following;-Mixed Lettuces, Spinach, Swiss Chard, Mustard, Arugula, Kale, Wood Sorrel, Chickweed and Mache'.
Slow Food Cayuga Duck Eggs and Free Range Chicken eggs- both fed Non GMO Feed
Scallions, Mustard Greens and Arugula

Tomato Plants this week-
Lemon Boy, Early Girl, Sun Sugar, Cherokee Green, Pink Girl, Golden Jubilee, Black Plum, Purple Carbon, Paul Robeson, Vintage Wine, Japanese Black Triefle, Green Zebra, Arkansas Traveler, Caspian Pink, Bradley, Sugar Plum, Violet Jasper, Washington Cherry, Amish Paste, Black Krim, Tappy's Heritage and I'm sure I've forgotten 1 or 2. 

Wow, straight into summer which shouldn't be too surprising I guess. In the 90's all week, most of the greens have bolted, we had to pull the early Radishes as they also went straight to seed. We have a second sowing up and hopefully we get something out of them instead of just feeding them to the sheep. There are some tomato plants we have stuck in odd protected places around the Greenhouse and growing spaces that already have fruit on them. Bill is preparing the main garden this weekend to make room for the rest of the warm weather crops. I know you all are waiting for cucumbers, tomatoes and I'm ready for some more pickles and salsa. 

A couple of weeks ago, we posted pictures of the Meech's Prolific Quince blossoms. I hand pollinated and we saw some bees and hummingbirds working on them. Today, I took these shots. 




We have about 20 I think if they all make it. Very exciting and Prolific. They've only been in the ground a season. 


Thanks to everyone for their well wishes last weekend. Bill and I took it easy and we both are feeling much better. We appreciate how you all treated the girls and stopped by our booth even though we weren't there. They did a pretty good job too. 
We'll see you Saturday at the park for another warm one. Dress cool but come to have some fun and get some great and local food. 

God's blessings on you and yours

TTFN, 

Sam, Bill and Cortney

Thursday, May 3, 2018

It's All Ducky

Market List
Sassy Salad Mix with Lettuces, Spinach, Arugula, Chard, Beet,
Lambsquarter, Mache',Mizuna and Kale, 
Egyptian Walking Onions, Scallions and Tomato Plants
Non GMO Chicken and Slow Food Cayuga Duck Eggs

So here's the shot I promised of the ducklings that my Hen hatched out. They are still a little hard to see but she is doing a really good job and they are already getting big. 


It was a strange week for ducks around here. First the hen hatched out these guys, then the goose broke all the duck eggs that we put under her. They just didn't mesh with her goose eggs she had planned and laid out. 
But then, I was standing at the store and the cashier was complaining about someone dumping some ducklings at the city park in Union. It really caught my attention because she said they were black ducks and as you know we raise black ducks. There are only a couple of breeds of black ducks really. So I got some particulars from her. She they had been dumped out the day before and one had already disappeared. I legged it down to the park just to see and there was for sure a little black duck, probably 5 weeks old, not even feathered out yet, nearly still all down swimming around by itself. I took a piece of bread out there which it ate out of my hand on the second bit and I dropped a couple of more bites and snagged it up.

Poor little guy, it was really tame. The extra strange thing about it was that it was the same kind of duck that we raise, it's a Cayuga. It's strange because they never sell those ducks in the farm stores, you have to special order them. A few weeks ago a couple customers brought some ducks out to us that they had raised as a treat for their granddaughter. Responsibly, they knew that they wanted her to have this experience but they knew they needed to find a home for them when they were done. They arranged with me ahead of time to take these ducks in and if it hadn't been me, they would've found another home for them not just dumped them out like what happened with this duck and it's sibling. So I put this one with those, they're probably 2-3 weeks difference in their ages and they are all younger than the rest of my flock. They were happy to let it hang out with them and they are all enjoying the rain today.


We've got about 3 or 4 more varieties of tomato plants coming Saturday. Cherokee Green, Black Plum, and Paul Robeson. Maybe a couple more, all grown in Organic Potting mix.
I probably am sending Becca my niece who used to work the booth before and Cortney. Bill and I have been so sick, I'm going to try and take a week off from the public, just stay home and plant some stuff. Stop by the booth though and make sure that the girls are behaving themselves. That's the plan anyway. We'll see how it will pan out. That's the plan anyway. Supposed to be a beautiful day Saturday which is why I'm sending them. Come get some of St. Louis' best Lemonade. 


Gods' Blessings on you and yours,

TTFN,

Sam, Bill, Becca and Cortney

Thursday, April 26, 2018

April 28 Market at Tower Grove

Market List; Egyptian Walking Onions, Radishes, Scallions, Sassy Salad Mix, Free Range, Non GMO, Slow Food Cayuga Duck Eggs, Chicken Eggs and Tomato Plants. 

It's been a busy week but I feel like we are spinning our wheels. It's the last time for Tomatillo Salsa until the Tomatillos are back in season. We had a full freezer but I've cooked every single one. We did something  little different this time and threw in some Chipotle Peppers. Yum

Last month I had a chicken who wanted to set so I put some duck eggs under her and low and behold she hatched out some ducklings. She and they are happy as a lark. We posted some pics on Instagram but they weren't very good and confused a lot of people (I don't know why) so I'm going to wait until next week to have some better pics on here when they are walking around the yard. But don't forget, we are on Instagram; @sunflowersavannahfarm. I open up every weekend during Market but through the week, our account is private. If it is, just make a request. I let everyone follow who will let me follow back. We post a lot of the things that happen on the farm and just have a good time. 

As many of you may remember, about 3 years ago we got a grant for some rare Heirloom Fruit trees, mostly focusing on an almost extinct in North America Fruit call Meech's Prolific Quince. Even after we received the grant. I had to wait 9 months for the tiniest whips which I grew on my window sill for 4 months and then put them in the high tunnel to allow their roots to form while watching their water. It's a good thing that I did because last summer and fall were so dry. We left them to overwinter in there again because there was still no rain to speak of all through November either. It's a good thing we did because half way through the winter there were warnings on the news that trees and shrubs planted during the summer, while dormant, would still need some additional watering. Yesterday I went out into the high tunnel and this is what I saw.
We had a couple of blooms last year but this is what is on just one of the trees this time. We have 5.
I will probably need to hand pollinate as I haven't seen any bees in there yet. These trees are so rare that they are only found in the USDA Germosphere and 1 nursery grows 15-20 whips a year. We are so hoping to get a few fruit from these 2.5 year old trees this season. After this they will be moved out with the Black Republican and Tartarian Cherries. 

So we'll see you Saturday with Organic Green tea with Robin's Local Honey and our voted number 1 in St. Louis by River Front times lemonade. See you at Tower Grove Park. 

God's Blessings on you and yours, 

TTFN, 

Sam and Bill


Friday, April 20, 2018

Changes at the Market


Market List;
Spicy Salad Mix, Egyptian Walking Onions and Radishes. Slow Food Cayuga Duck eggs and Chicken eggs,
both fed non GMO feed from
Meadowlark Farm Be Well in Cuba, MO
3 Granolas, Salsas, Jams and Jellies


So last week everyone was so excited about the new layout at the market. Although it was a little confusing finding the vendors who's spots had changed, there was more room for shopping and the flow out of the Market for loading at breakdown was definitely better. However, due to the rain last week and a vendor who was careless, none of the farmers are allowed to have our vehicles parked next to the square ever again. We will have to pull in, unload and then pull off the square. This will make setting up and breaking down a much longer process. Also we will have to set up our tents on the pavement until the grass grows back next to the square and so, there goes the extra room. This will be a huge inconvenience for those of us with a lot to unload especially people like Amy of Three Rivers, who brings all of her CSA boxes, she will have to unload her entire truck before she can begin to set up her booth. I'm not sure how we will all pull this off when the tomatoes and other warm weather, space necessary produce is ready. So just an FYI, the Market will look very different tomorrow and will probably not be ready quite as early. 

We will have our Organic Green Tea and Lemonade tomorrow, several people asked for the tea last week and others were so excited for the Lemonade. When the temp is below 65, it's kinda hard to gauge sometimes but we sold out of Lemonade and so many asked for the tea that we are bringing it tomorrow. 

We'll see you there, 

God's Blessings on you and yours, 

TTFN, 

Sam and Bill



P.S. April 1, Sunflower Savannah Farm was 18 years old 




Thursday, April 12, 2018

First 2018 Tower Grove Market

Market List
We're back at the Tower Grove Pavilion Square

Non GMO Slow Food Cayuga Duck eggs,
Chicken Eggs, Sassy Salad Mix, Egyptian Walking Onions, Scallions and Tomato Plants

It's our first Market of the season. We are a little behind due to a lot of health issues this winter but we have a big season planned. Next week we should have radishes too and soon chard. We have many tomato varieties planned, grass fed lamb, multiple varieties of cucumbers and of course tomatillos. 

It was a pretty rough Winter. No forage for the sheep due to the drought so we've been feeding hay since October. This caused low lamb birth rates. Lots and lots of eggs from the chickens that we got from 3 Rivers Farm but only 1 market to sell them at, so we did a few pop ups. Yep, it was a rough Winter but I am looking forward to a fun and fruitful 13th season at Tower Grove.

Many beautiful female lambs this year. Usually all the pretty ones are males which is a bummer because they are the ones that get processed. Not this time, almost all of the girls were multicolored. I am especially enamored with this beauty below. Gold ear, eye and stripes. All of the ones in the photo above are gals too. 


It is supposed to be 66 degrees on Saturday so we are starting the season with our Famous Lemonade. There will also be the 3 Kinds of Granola that you all have loved since opening day and Smoked Tomatillo Salsa. Lots to turn out for so we'll see you there bright and early 8:30 -12:30. 

God's Blessings on you and yours, 

TTFN, 

Sam and Bill




Thursday, March 8, 2018

Last Winter Market



           Tower Grove Market @
The Montessori City Garden - March 10th
          1618 Tower Grove Ave.
                             Market List;
Chicken and Slow Food Cayuga Duck eggs, Pear Butter, Smoked Tomatillo Salsa and
3 kinds of Granola and Spinach
Don't forget, our ducks and chickens are fed with locally grown, Non GMO food, 
Milled and Grown by Meadowlark Farm be well

Hard to believe that after this Winter Market, in 4 weekends, we will be back in full time 2018 Season. What with illnesses and conferences, it seems like we should definitely have more time. Still we have many things planted already. There were so many requests for Arugula that we planted several raised beds with it, also Mesclun, that sweet and spicy mix of lettuces that we all love.

Of course, I already have about 30 varieties of tomatoes going in the greenhouse for Spring Market sales, with more still to plant. Holy and Genovese Basil as well as Red Freddy will be available as herb starts, along with Thyme and Italian Parsley. Our new varieties of tomatoes include, Black Zebra, Snow Fairy and Tappy's heritage.











We're lambing again, so far 6 on the ground but we lost one due to a breech delivery last week. We have 9 more ewes getting ready to lamb at any moment.


We'll see you Saturday at the Montessori School. 

God's Blessings on you and yours, 

TTFN

Sam and Bill




Friday, February 9, 2018

While We were Apart

Market List; Montessori City Garden,
1618 Tower Grove Ave
Slow Food Cayuga Duck and Chicken Eggs NOW Proudly Fed with locally raised and Milled Meadowlark Farm Feed.
Chipotle Salsa, Pecans, Smoked Tomatillo Salsa, Four Kinds of Granola


It has been 5 weeks since we have seen you, some of you longer than others(Kathy) but it has flown by with projects, visitors and conferences.
We had a Wwoofer here for a couple of weeks, my friend Jeff has arrived back and is staying until April.




This is what the barn looked like 3 weeks ago.
This is what the guys have done since. 

 We drilled Mushroom Logs with Cauliflower Mushrooms this week and we will see you tomorrow at Tower Grove Farmers Market.

God's Blessings on you and yours,

TTFN,

Sam, Bill and Jeff











































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































Market List-
Slow Food Cayuga Duck Eggs and Chicken Eggs, NOW Proudly fed by Meadowlark Farm locally raised and Milled Non GMO food.































Its been 5 weekends since I saw you and some of you (Kathy) way more than that. it has just flown by with so many projects and visitors.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Eggs and Cold

Market List; Non GMO Chicken Eggs, Grass Fed Lamb, Missouri Pecans.
So sorry, no Chard. It was not happy with -11 degrees. It's still alive but it is not pretty.

 This week I have been pulling stuff out of the freezer and canning up a storm;
Smoked Tomatillo Salsa, Blue Strawberry Preserves, Blackberry Watermelon Marmalade an Garlicky Chili Sauce(probably the best that I have ever made).



Holy cow, the chickens have been laying like crazy! We gave away eggs in our Christmas baskets,
sold eggs at church and Billy's job, ate quiches, omelets, and eggs anyway you can think of but we still will have about 40 dozen to bring to market and none of them are over a week old. We are getting between 35 and 49 eggs everyday. The ducks were not happy with that cold snap though and we had to take their light as with all the heated water items going, we were throwing breakers. They have the light from the room the chickens go at night and a window but it's not enough to encourage them to lay as the days are so short. They stopped for a bit a few days ago. I'm sure that they will start soon with these 3 gorgeous days that we have enjoyed. The thing about having livestock is that any day that it is over 33, you are a happy camper. Speaking of that, everyone wonders why our chickens are laying so great. We have a light in their night enclosure, heated water and dry bedding. Comfy chickens are productive chickens. When the days are below zero, they have free run of the barn but they don't go outside. They wouldn't anyway if there is a cozy barn with food and warmed water. So we keep the barn more comfortable on those times by keeping the exterior doors closed. As soon as it warms up a bit, they are out running around getting into trouble as they are today and most days. The dogs have a doggie door so they can go in and out. They don't really mind the cold. In fact, I see them laying on the ice quite often.




This week we have a volunteer, my longtime friend Jeff is here helping out. This is he and Bill breaking down the tomato fences in the garden. Long overdue, so glad to get some help.

I will be representing Certified Naturally Grown at the Sustainable Ag conference on Jan 21 in Chattanooga so we will not be doing Eureka Farmer Market this month, EXCITING News though, I will be teaching a class on Shepherding at the Missouri Organic Association on February 1st. I can't wait to share my tips on Sheep Care with like minded people.

That's about it. Hoping to see you all at the Montessori City Garden on Saturday for the Tower Grove Farmers Market.




Cloud in the barn

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Eureka Holiday Market

Tomorrow, Thursday afternoon Bill and I will at the Eureka Farmers Market, 3:30-7 on Coffey Lane The Timbers. Follow the signs. It's behind the plaza with Los Cabos Mexican Restaurant. We will be inside so don't worry about the cold or the weather, they've pulled the rain out of the forecast...again.

Market List- Missouri Pecans, Salad Mix, Non GMO Free Range Chicken Eggs, Some Salad Mix, Tomatoes, Lamb.

Holiday Gift or Meal Ideas; Cherry Serrano Pepper Jelly, Pickled Peppers, 3 Granolas, Homemade Bloody Mary Mix, Antique Blue Ball Jar filled with Pecans, Sugar free Pear Butter and Garlicky Chili Sauce. Have you finished your shopping?

Bill and I have been enjoying some time off catching up on projects and not having to rush everywhere. Still it seems like the days just fill up. We're trying to get some fun time with our fellow farmers but it seems like we all are still playing catch up from all the things neglected while wrapping up the season.
Stop by and see us tomorrow, it's a long time until the next Tower Grove Market. By the way, thanks to those of you who came out to our little mini pop up at Chipotle last week. I know it was last minute but you made it worth it.

God's Blessings on you and yours,

TTFN,

Sam and Bill


Thursday, December 7, 2017

Christmas Market at the Montessori

Jubilee and Cloud 
Saturday December 9, 2017
Tower Grove Farmers Market
Montessori School 
1618 Tower Ave 
St. Louis 

Thursday  Dec 21st 2017
Eureka Farmers Market
Coffey Lane, The Timbers
Eureka, Mo

Market List Saturday
Swiss Chard, Chicken Eggs, 
Missouri Pecans, 
Salad Mix,
Lots of amazing Holiday Gift Ideas
We'll have a few tomatoes




 Saturday is the last Tower Grove Market of the year. Come and see us inside the Montessori School for Eggs and Pecans for your holiday baking. Those chickens picked up from Three Rivers Farm are still laying like crazy. Pickled eggs will be offered at the Market again. Several Spicy offerings for those who have friends who like it hot. Pickled Hot Peppers, Spicy Pickles, Garlicky Chile Sauce and Smoked Tomatillo Salsa all would make a Happy Hanukkah or Merry Christmas present.
Granola makes a great and healthy stocking stuffer, an Antique Ball Jar filled
with Pecans will please almost anyone.

It's cold here on the Farm and where you are too. but our hoses froze last night even though they were unhooked and supposedly drained every time they were used yesterday. So I've carried water for 30 sheep, 35 ducks, 60 chickens and 4 dogs. Tomorrow doesn't look to be any warmer. But we will be cleaning the last of the roasting ducks we will be providing for the market this Season. Thankfully.
Four Days before Christmas, we will be at the Eureka Farmers Market with many of the same items as well as another opportunity to shop Local.

We'll see you Saturday. Dress warmly. Winter is finally here.

God's Blessings on you and yours,

TTFN,

Sam and Bill

Follow us on Instagram @sunflowersavannahfarm