Thursday, July 15, 2010
Towson Farmers Market
On Thursdays, our local Chamber of Commerce sponsor Towson Farmer's Market from 10:45-3:00 pm on one of our local downtown streets. Living in a college town, which also happens to be the county seat, downtown Towson is a beehive of activity during the day. Towson's Farmers Market is just one of many that are scattered around our county bringing local farm fresh produce to the residents.
All the participants are suppose to have grown the produce that they offer for sale at the market. Most comply but there are a few that don't, trying to pass off produce that they picked up at the local wholesale foods distributors. Savvy buyers know the difference and buy accordingly. This and the picture at the top are from one of my favorite vendors at the market. That's Jennifer, Ian's wife. Ian is the owner of the farm, Richfield Farm located in Manchester, MD. Isn't she just adorable? Jennifer and Ian just got married at the end of last year. And Jennifer is just the sweetest and so have been the cantalopes that we have bought from their stand. Last week we bought 6 nice size cantalopes on Thursday and by Monday there wasn't a slice left...that's how good they were!
We bought 6 more this week along with a dozen ears of corn, which was also delicious. I can't wait til I get home to have the boys husk the corn and steam it up in the big old pot. Yummo. I could make a meal out of farm fresh steamed corn. Jennifer said that they don't currently have a website but it's in the works, so for now, you'll have to find them at the farmers market in Towson.
The hubby found another local farm to try some of their corn. I don't recall them being at the farmers market last year or having bought from them, so we decided to give them a try. We bought 1/2 dozen ears of corn and boy were they yummy! So we will add Pahl's Farm to the list of vendors to buy from. They also have their own farmstand at their farm located in North Western Baltimore County.
Another favorite vendor is one of the local orchards...Reids Orchard. They are located in Orrtanna, PA, which isn't too far over the MD/PA line, otherwise know as the Mason-Dixon line. We bought 3 different types of plums this week from Reids. Hope they are as good as last weeks little Methly plums that we purchased. They were super sweet and tasted just like candy.
One of the nice things about going to the farmers market to get my produce, is that the vendors are some of the nicest people. The hubby and I are committed to supporting local farmers/growers who produce quality fruits and vegetables. Buying local not only ensures freshness, it cuts down on the carbon footprint of transporting produce over long distances, like most large supermarkets tend to do.
Although, I will give credit to some of our local supermarkets who are working out contracts with local growers to get local produce.
Another favorite vendor of ours is Wilson Mill Orchard, located in Darlington, MD. We have gotten some of the sweetest peaches from their stand. While Wilson's doesn't have a website to track them down, one of the other local venues they will be at is Darlington Apple Festival, held the 1st Saturday in October. Their location there is at the entrance to the school grounds and they will have different varities of apples for sale. I'll be sure to stop buy and pick up some apples to eat when I set up at the apple festival selling my handpainted wares.
We also again this year are growing some of our own vegetables. As you can see the beets and carrots, need to have some weeding done. I hope to get to it tomorrow if the weather cooperates. It's either too stinking hot and humid to do much outside or it's pouring down rain....I know I said I wouldn't complain about the rain...just sayin'
The boys have done all the work again this year on the garden. The hubby and son are trying a growing experiment with the tomatoes. They are trellising them up a tubular piece of conduit pipe, cutting off the side shoots, making one main stem. The tomatoes are setting in clusters and sort of remind me of a garlic clove braid.
The cucumber plant is a monster again this year. We planted a variety called 'diva'. No need for pollination nor for more than one sex of flowers to set fruit. We have gotten a bunch of cucumbers so far and have given away quite a few to the neighbors already.
We planted these broccoli plants early this spring and have had quite a bit of broccoli from them already. They keep producing little florets through the summer and hopefully they will make it into the fall and keep producing. They have really greened up since we have gotten some rain recently. Amazing what all those little drops do for plants...they seem to grow overnight.
Our beans got a later start this year than last. The boys decided to add another layer to the raised beds which then required hauling additional soil in to fill the beds. The first truckload filled the first bed and half of the second. Before we could go down to get more dirt, my front perennial bed had to be constructed so it would make the trip and time worth the effort. We are currently putting in the last raised bed that we can in the backyard and need to get dirt for that one. It's going to be a mulit-tiered bed, that is in the sunniest part of our yard. I can't wait for it to be filled so the rest of the veggies can go in....most likely some fall crop ones at this point.
I think after the last bed is in we will be all maxed out in the backyard....maybe the hubby will get all 6 acres we own in the country planted....nah! It will never happen! Well maybe....I keep after him to plant some sweet annie so I can sell it over the internet and some small bottle gourds too....maybe some day.