We’re already at the end of July? When August draws near, I usually issue a warning that nearly all of the favorite summer veggies are about to be in short supply. Once it gets really hot for long stretches, many plants just shut down flower production, and without flowers, there are no fruit. So, when the hot still days of August roll around there is often a sudden decline in tomatoes, beans, squash, peppers, and pretty much everything but okra. This year, though, we might be ok. It’s not been particularly hot, and there has been just enough rain to keep things from getting too dry. We’ll be pushing 100 degrees in the weeks ahead, no doubt, but we’re also likely to see scattered showers. If we stay lucky and the trend holds for a few more weeks, the bounty we have now just might be with us right into fall.
One of our growers got a brief mention this week in a front page story in the Wall Street Journal, regarding how demands of modern industrial pig farming has pushed pig genetics to an extremely lean, huge hog, so much so that they’ve overshot the mark and now produce bland, dry meat. Cathy Payne at Broad River Pastures is one of America’s farmers who is working to revive the old breeds of pig that have nearly been lost. You can read the entire article here: https://www.wsj.com/articles/another-problem-with-america-our-skinny-pigs-make-lousy-bacon-1501256000.
Cathy has been working on a book about her experiences reviving the particular breed she’s become known for, the Guinea Hog. She’s nearly done, and has opened up an Indiegogo campaign to help her cross the finish line. If you’d like to support her book and get some great items from her farm while you do, visit her campaign’s page here: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/guinea-hogs-lost-and-found-a-recent-history#/
Thank you so much for your support of Athens Locally Grown, all of our growers, local food, and our rights to eat it. You all are part of what makes Athens such a great area in which to live. We’ll see you on Thursday at Ben’s Bikes at the corner of Pope and Broad Streets from 4:30 to 8pm!
Other Area Farmers Markets
The Athens Farmers Market is open on Saturdays at Bishop Park and Wednesday afternoons downtown at Creature Comforts. You can catch the news on their website. The West Broad Farmers Market is up and running, Saturdays from 9am to 1pm, and you can find out more here: http://www.athenslandtrust.org/west-broad-farmers-market/. The Oconee County Farms Market is open on Saturdays in Watkinsville. Their website is www.oconeefarmersmarket.org. The Comer Farmers’ Market is open on Saturday mornings from 9am to noon. Check www.facebook.com/comerfm for more information. Washington, GA also has a lovely little Saturday market, running on Saturdays from 9-12. Folks to the east can check out the Hartwell Farmers Market, which starts bright and early on Saturday morning from 7am to noon, and Tuesday afternoons from noon to 4pm. You can learn all about them here: www.washingtonfarmersmkt.com. If you know of any other area markets operating, please let me know.
All of these other markets are separate from ALG (including the Athens Farmers Market) but many growers sell at multiple markets. Please support your local farmers and food producers, where ever you’re able to do so!