Monday, January 21, 2008

question for the day:

Anybody know anything about CSA share farms?

I was reading a copy of Edible Chesapeake (not much at the magazine's site, but the blog has potential) that I picked up on my Friday Hamden adventure. There was a big article about community-sponsored agriculture - CSA farms, where a family could buy a 'share' in the year's crop.

I remember reading in someone's blog - maybe Brandy at loosetooth,com - about the thrill of picking up a little crate of fresh, ripe veggies every week, and the creativity of figuring out what to do with them. That sounds good to me, I thought! That would be a great thing for this summer!

But a Google search revealed: not much. If this is going to succeed for our family, I would need a pick-up spot that is really, truly convenient, one that requires very little 'going out of our way.' (Although, if we picked up on a Monday or a Friday, I could make the weekly trip to the farm a kid activity! That sounds wholesome and educational and like intentional living, doesn't it? Hmmmm...)

There seem to be quite a few in Maryland, but aside from Breezy Willow Farms, I can't find anything that's even vaguely close by. (Here's the best list I've found so far.)

Any advise or ideas would rock. Thnx.


TeamDandy said...

We subscribed to a CSA a few years ago and shared it with the Sitnicks (there are only 2 of us and I don't eat many veggies so that gave us the right amount of food.) It was a fun experience because my personal goal was to try all of the food that we received - and we got some 'weird' stuff! But the overall experience was excellent - I'd love to do it again if we ate such a variety of vegetables. As it stands, we're better off going to farmers markets and getting just what we want from local growers.

I'm sorry I can't help with finding anything convenient to your area. I've used the following directories in the past - maybe something will turn out to be convenient even though it's not where you live?

Alexander D. Mitchell IV said...

As I am to understand it, the big problem is that farmland is too expensive in your are--indeed, anywhere in your state save some areas across that big bridge--for a CSA farm to survive. What arrangements you can find would be primarily be through farmers' markets, both weekly parking-lot set-ups (like next to the bank in your town in summer) and co-op markets like the Mill Valley Market near Hampden in Baltimore. Furthermore, these markets are largely supplied by orchards and farms in Pennsylvania and West Virginia. I would ask about the farmers markets, or possibly look up "community gardening" for leads along these lines.