New From the Farm – September 20

This time of year, so much happens in the field every day that it is hard to know what to tell you about. For today I will focus on two highlights in particular.
First, we now finally have a few ripe watermelons. I had mentioned a while back that I would discuss how to tell when a watermelon is ripe. There are some things you can keep an eye on that should give you a fairly accurate idea if your watermelons are ripe. Don’t rely on just one of these tricks, because the plants can give you occasional false information. You need to put all these clues together!
#1 Look where your watermelon’s stem attaches to the main vine. On the opposing side of the main vine where your watermelon’s stem is attached is a curly tendril. This should be brown and dry, not green.
#2 The watermelon plant itself many times will turn slightly discolored with (sometimes) spotted leaves and the foliage will start to droop or die back.
#3 The underside of the melon should have a yellow or cream colored spot. This is where the melon rested on the ground.
#4 If you have plenty of melon you can always pick one that is representative of most of your melons size and ripeness…then crack it open to see if it is ripe.
I have relied on these tricks over the years and have been happy with the results.
The other highlight was our Tennessee Dancing Gourds! These are little pear-shaped green colored gourds about the size of a golf ball. They are pretty for fall decorating, but also contain a hidden joy. They spin just like tops! Apparently, years ago, children used to bring these little gourds to school as toys. We have had a blast spinning them on our floors and tables. Sometimes we even color designs on them to make them spin in different colors. I planted only 5 on these little vines and have already harvested…wait for it…over 400 of the little dancing gourds!

For this week we have available:
Head Lettuce
Herbs (parsley, basil, sage, cilantro)
Summer Squash
Watermelons (limited supply)
Gourds (All shapes and sizes)
Pie pumpkins
Cantaloupe (limited supply)
Winter Squash (Delicata)

Have a great week!