Taking Memberships for 2013 Summer/Fall

Farmer Steve

Farmer Steve
Proud Parent of Beautiful Onions


What is a C.S.A.?

Quite simply, it Stands for Community Supported Agriculture and can be the answer to todays industrialization of America's food supply by bringing the community closer to the source of their food supply.

How does it work?

If a person is interested in becoming a member of our C.S.A they would purchase a full or half share per season prior to the season's start. Pre-payment allows a small independent organic grower, like Steve Smith, the finances to invest in the equipment and materials he needs for the upcoming season. For as low as $15.00 per week your share of produce is distributed (each week) over a 24 week growing season (June through November) for your eating pleasure. Distribution may be achieved via delivery or picked up at a designated distribution site on a designated day at a designated time. Hollow Pumpkin C.S.A. will notify it's members as to which method of distribution will be used for that season as the season grows near. We request minimally 24 to 48 hours notice if you will not be available on the distribution day so that we may make other arrangements with you, within reason. If we do not hear from you and your share does not get picked up on the day of distribution within the time slot specified, your share will be donated to a shelter or another community organization.

*Payment plans are available. Call or email and ask us for information about our "Early Turnip Discount."

Why Join a C.S.A.?

1. It Affords you the most healthy and nutritional produce


2. It supports your local farm and economy.

3. It supports the environment.

4. It allows you a relationship with your local farmer.

5. It allows you to have a voice about the produce and food

you eat.

Things to Consider:

1. Do you enjoy cooking with a variety of seasonal vegetables?

2. Are you willing to share the risks along with the benifits. The farmer may occasionally encounter challenges, such as weather related issues, pests and blights? Eating local and seasonal is different than buying whatever you want whenever you want at a grocery store. It will take some getting use to. However, eating local and seasonal is healthier and absolutely more in sync with the environment.

3. Are you adventurous? Do you like trying new and different vegetables and fruits?

Our Distribution Area:

Steve's farm is located in Anna Illinois, 30 miles South of Carbondale Illinois. Hollow Pumpkin C.S.A's distribution area covers Anna/Jonesboro, areas north of Anna such as Cobden and Makanda up to Carbondale, east to Carterville and Marion, west to Murphysboro. We also will distribute to the Lick Creek area and, of course, south, east and west of Anna within a 20 mile (or so) radius. (We are flexible based on the amount of interest we receive in a particular area and distribution issues can be negotiated within reason.)

Who is Hollow Pumpkin C.S.A.?

Steve Smith is the owner and Head Farmer. Steve has various friends who graciously donate their time when they can and we encourage our C.S.A. members to get a little dirty and come out to the farm and volunteer to work in the fields from time to time.

About Steve Smith

Steve Smith came to Anna Illinois from New York and established the farm in 1977, over 30 years ago, with a strong desire to go back to the land and organically grow vegetables. He succeeded, and became the first viable organic farm in Southern Illinois. Steve is truly a pioneer in organic farming in the region. He is dedicated to providing the Southern Illinois community with fresh, local, ecologically sound produce and he is always excited about sharing his knowledge with everyone, especially the next generation.

To contact Hollow Pumpkin C.S.A. you may email: steve.hollowpumpkin@gmail.com or call (618) 614-2233

Monday, May 30, 2011

2011 C.S.A. Distribution Begins

Hello to all of our C.S.A. members. The time has finally arrived! We will begin the 2011 C.S.A. distribution this week, on Wednesday June 1st from 4pm to 6pm at the Neighborbhood Co-op Grocery in the Murdale shopping center in Carbondale, IL. The wet sunless weather, that we have had for quite some time, has slowed some of the growth. However, as usual, farmer Steve has done a fabulous job of keeping the plants in good shape.

Our list of items that our members will find in their share bags this week is:
Garlic scapes, Green onions, Salad mix, Romaine lettuce, Rhubarb, Carrots, Oregano and Lemon balm.
Steve had told me that, soon, we will have Beets, Summer squash and dill to add to the share bags. It is hard to know what to plant and when to plant when the weather goes from cold and wet right to scorching hot. The plants get confused and so, In the cooler weather we planted broccoli and cauliflower...unfortunately due to the profuse rain they did not size enough to make it through and now the heat will take it's toll on them as well. We hope to have them for the cold crop shares.
The farm is looking good. Steve has begun to bushhog the whole place. The new greenhouse has shaped up and the summer plants are happy!

Thank you, Lisa Thomas, for the beautiful pictures you took at our annual gathering. Thank you to Betsy Herman and Cliff Connolly, who came out and volunteered to help.

Please check out the recipe page for a brand new rhubarb recipe!

Monday, May 16, 2011

2011 Members Gathering

This year some of our members braved the unusually cool and damp weather to come out to the farm and look around at our third annual beginning of the season members gathering. They got a first hand look at what is growing in the fields and greenhouse and how the unusual weather, this spring, has affected the growth.
We have many new members, and so we imparted some information about this season. We will, most likely begin our distribution on June first as usual. However, because of the wet and cool weather we will probably be working on a bell curve this season and begin with a lighter share bag
for the first few distributions and increase the size as the crops respond to what we hope will be better conditions.
We do not use boxes to distribute our shares. We use reusable bags and our members rotate bags each week. We reminded the members who attended the gathering that in order for this system to work they must bring their empty bag with them, beginning with the second delivery, in order for them to pick up their full bag. Distribution will be at the Neighborhood Co-op in Carbondale in the Murdale shopping center, this season, every Wednesday between 4pm and 6pm. We thank Francis Murphy and the Neighborhood Co-op for graciously letting us use their space and cooler.
The beginning of the season members gathering is a casual gathering that allows the members to see the farm, if they have not done so already, meet some of their fellow members, ask questions and share a dish of food with everyone. Good food was certainly what we had and we would like to thank everyone who attended for making such yummy dishes. We also like to invite the folks who have helped on the farm so that our members can meet the people who are responsible for helping us get the farm/C.S.A. up and running each season. This year Phil Mendenhall showed up with his wife Vikki. They run a farm down the road from us and yet Phil has been out to the farm a number of times to help with the green house. Now that is community at it's best!
We also invited Mike Hatfield, his wife, Jessica , Orlan Mays and his wife Chastity to come out as well. Mike and Orlan are part of the Food Works Network and they are new farmers. Mike has a farm called Flyway Farm in Makanda, Illinois and Orlan is running and tending a community garden in Attucks Park in Carbondale Illinois. Farmer Steve has taken on a mentoring position in order to assist with Mike and Orlan's growth as farmers. We are constantly impressed with the skill and talent that both Mike and Orlan already bring with them.
During the coarse of the gathering a good question came up which was: "What will we do if the price of gas goes up above five or six dollars per gallon?" My first response was to say that we will cry. On a more serious note, one of the reasons for having a centralized distribution point is to use less gas. The other fear, I'm sure, of members in our C.S.A. is will we have to raise prices. Hollow Pumpkin Farm is trying to keep our prices as low as possible. We know that food prices have gone up all over the country and in our regular grocery stores. If you figure it out, Hollow Pumpkin C.S.A.'s produce is being brought to it's members for less than grocery store prices at this time. We will try to continue to do so for as long as we can.
One of the purposes of a C.S.A. is to have that community of members who may be interested in helping to keep the costs down. (example: Donating some time in the field with the farmer so that the farmer does not have the payroll expense.)
On a less serious note - I had a small window of opportunity to snap some photos of some of our new members and some who have been with us from the start. Thank You, everyone, who came out to the farm
yesterday. It was such a pleasure to meet some of our new members and, of course, see our continuing members. We also encouraged our members to bring family and friends and a few did. I hope their experience was pleasant and please, one and all, feel free to come back to the farm and see the progress this season.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Another Challenging Season

Well, much has happened over the past few weeks. Tornadoes and rain, rain, rain to name a few. Last year was a drought this spring brings an over abundance of water. Just goes to show you that nothing in farming is for sure folks. Steve said it has been a long time since we have seen a frost in May, and yet, we saw the past two nights bring us early morning frost. So, it looks like we are in for another challenging season.

Today, our friend Sarah Tezak out on the farm. She volunteered to work with Steve and work they did. Mulching the asparagus was the main focus today. Steve ran out and got a huge round bale of hay early this morning. Steve is hoeing and tilling the ground...loosening it up after the large amounts of rain which turns the soil into "Cement." So far the strawberries, lettuce and rhubarb are hanging in there. The green onions are abundant.
We want to thank Sarah for graciously giving her time to us to help on the farm. She brings a gentle grace to field work and we love her.
Just a note: We are having our beginning of the season Members Gathering on Sunday May 15th. It will begin at 3:30pm and it will be a pot luck. Please contact us to R.S.V.P and let us know if you will be attending. You may find directions on the info. section of our facebook page: www.facebook.com/hollowpumpkincsa, or you may email us at fran.hollowpumpkin@gmail.com
We hope all of our members will try to come...it is a time to meet your fellow members, see the farm and have good food, drink and conversation. It is also a great time to ask farmer Steve questions - so mark it on your calender.