Jun 2011

Markets Starting June 15th

Market season has finally arrived, and starting with the next milk pickup on June 15th, we'll be at the Fine Arts Center (FAC) from 3-7pm.  The FAC is located at 30 W. Dale Street, at the corner of Dale and Cascade St., just south of Colorado College.  There is parking in the FAC lot south of the main entrance as well as on Mesa Road west of the FAC.  Street parking in the neighborhood is also available, heading east of Cascade is typically easiest to find.  

You can also visit us at the Saturday markets at the Margarita at Pine Creek from 9am-1pm starting June 18th. 

Shareholders will continue to get milk and eggs on Wednesdays, and meat will be available for all to purchase at both Wednesday and Saturday locations.  As the season progresses, we'll be bringing many varieties of delightful, healthful, and wholesome produce as well.  If you have not yet tried our pastured pork products, market season is your chance to do so!  A complete list of products is available at our booth each market day.  We sincerely appreciate your support of both Larga Vista Ranch and the Colorado Farm and Art Market who both strive to provide the most sustainable and healthful source of local food available in this area. 

Colorado Farm and Art Market

We sincerely appreciate your continued support of Larga Vista Ranch.  We have rapidly grown to 160 shareholders, and with this expansion comes some growing pains.  We ask for your patience as we strive to keep up with the growing demand for our milk, and continue to make improvements to our ordering, delivering, and administrative systems!  Thank you.


Markets Starting June 15th
Larga Vista is Expanding!
Tomatoes and Peppers
Larga Vista's Holistic Goal:  Part 2

Like It's Market Season Again! on Facebook

Larga Vista is Expanding!

    Noel and her calf, Lily, born last Saturday                                    Clementine and her bull calf, Alfie
Tomatoes and Peppers

Our last volunteer day on May 18th was all about tomatoes.  The 3 adult and 2 teenage volunteers, as well as the interns and employees of Larga Vista, and Kim planted two rows of tomatoes:  each 1/4 mile long for a total of 1/2 mile of tomato plants.  Come late August when those tomatoes are ready for picking, we are going to have a feast of tomatoes! 

The different tomato varieties that we planted this year include:
  • Matina:  This very early variety bears loads of 2 to 4 oz. red fruit with the terrific flavor normally found only in the huge beefstakes.  Ripens up to a full month earlier than many beefsteak varieties.  Potato-leaved plants put on large clusters of abundant tomatoes, and even though they start early, continue to bear throughout a long season.  Heirloom from Germany.
  • Costaluto Florentino:  Sweet deeply ribbed fruits making a wonderful stuffer and slicer, also commonly used as a component for sauces.  Italians consider this one of the top 3 tasting tomatoes in the world.  Very versatile with a rich flavor.  A heat tolerant tomato.
  • Pantano Romanesco:  A terrific Italian heirloom tomato with nice beefsteak fruits, slightly ruffled.  This is a pure and authentic strain imported from Italy, and like many Italian tomatoes, ripens from the inside out, so will often still show green on the skin when it is at its prime.
  • Amish Paste:  An Amish heirloom discovered in Wisconsin.  Produces 6-8 oz. red fruits that are oxheart to almost teardrop-shaped.  Meaty fruits are juicy and have outstanding flavor.  Good for sauce or fresh eating used as a 'saladette.'
  • Cherokee Purple:  This Tennessee heirloom is thought to have originated in the Cherokee territories.  Very productive vines bear lots of dark purple fruit with red brick interiors.  The tomatoes are pleasantly sweet and rich, thick-skinned and soft.  They do not store well, so must be consumed quickly upon harvesting.
  • Green Zebra:  A green tomato even fully ripened, and considered one of the finest of its type.  Full flavored masterpiece that is a wonderful heirloom variety.  A terrific salad slicer with a sweet-spicy flavor.
  • Old German Stripe:  Old German is a long-time favorite-- huge boat-shaped striped Mennonite heirloom tomatoes that are rich in flavor and perfect for slicing.  When ripe, they display a beautiful mottled/striped blend of colors from gold to red.
  • Marianna's Peace:  Marianna's is considered by many to be one of the finest overall tasting tomatoes available.  It is thought to have originated in the region of old Czechoslovakia and then brought to America during the 2nd World War.  Potato-leaf, pink tomatoes producing moderate yields of 1-2 lbs. of beautiful beefsteaks.  Dense, creamy, sweet flesh with a rich complex of flavors.
We also grow amazing peppers at Larga Vista and have planted the following varieties:
  • Ciligia Picante:  Don't let the name fool you.  This little pepper's name translates roughly to 'little cherry' but it is also known as Baccio de Santana, or 'Satan's Kiss.'  An Italian golf ball-sized red pepper that is actually quite spicy, traditionally stuffed with anchovies and mozzarella then grilled.  A premium Italian heirloom not often seen in the U.S.
  • Chile de Arbol: Originating from Chihuahua, Mexico, this is the famous 'Birds Beak' or 'Tree' chile pepper.  The plants have a small tree-like form that reach 3-4' tall and produce these wonderful cayenne-type chiles that are usually gound into fantastic powders or dried for 'Ristras.'  A very nice hot and smokey flavor that has won over many sauce and salsa connoisseurs.
  • Melrose:  As the story goes,  this ultra-sweet, very rare Italian heirloom pepper was re-discovered in Melrose Park, Illinois just outside of Chicago, having been brought over years before by an Italian family immigrating to the U.S.  They can be used red or in the earlier green stage.  They have an amazingly sweet flavor, especially when used the traditional Italian way--fried.  4x2" fruit are deep candy red when fully ripe.
  • Corno di Torro Rosso & Giallo:  Tall plants and large yields of authentic 'Bull's Horn' tapered and pointed style Italian peppers.  Extra sweet selection that is the standard in Italy for frying.  Some love it grilled or in pizza and pasta dishes.
  • Romanian Sweet:  These wonderful peppers start out ivory-colored, turn orange, then mature to red.  All three color stages can appear at the same time, making a stunning display on the farm.  Traditionally harvested when ivory then fried.  Plants are prolific and peppers are pretty and palate pleasing.

Anyone hungry for peppers or tomatoes yet?  Larga Vista's setting and climate produce some of the finest varieties around, and you can get your fill at the market typically starting in August!  Thanks to shareholder Kathya Ethington for the tantalizing photo.

Larga Vista's Holistic Goal:  Part Two

The first part of our Holistic Goal pertains to Quality of Life.  The second part is regarding Production:
  • Making timely repairs and consideration of structure in our home
  • Maintaining a reliable staff
  • Scheduling time off and time together
  • Preparing and eating a nutrient-dense Weston A. Price Foundation-based diet
  • Incorporating exercise into daily life
  • Planning a profit in our business enterprise
  • Testing business decisions
  • Sharing knowledge and successes with our community
  • Protecting our freedoms
          Our goal and its different facets state what we want from life, but not how to get there.  This critical component of holistic goal setting, focusing on the "what" and not the "how," allows for fluidity and experimentation on methods and techniques to reach the goal.  We are free to make changes in how we act to accomplish these goals of what we want in our lives at Larga Vista Ranch.  We encourage you to visit:  volunteer on the farm for a day and come spend some time with us! 

Doug's Thoughts from the North Forty

One of the most interesting parts and greatest challenges is the differences we see from one year to the next.  My old neighbor Earl Asbury used to tell me "you farm this country like it's going to be the driest year you've ever seen and you'll get by."  So after a bumper crop in 2010, we headed into 2011 with extremely dry soil conditions and a tight hay supply.  A bitter cold and open winter was hard on the cows, but we looked forward to the early spring grass.  But it was slow to come!  The fall irrigation moisture we applied disappeared quickly and the cold temps kept the grass from growing much.  We had to start grazing the short pasture, which made it hard to get enough fiber into the girls.  Balancing protein, energy, and fiber that time of year is always difficult.  Thankfully spring did come for about a week and then summer hit! 

We worked up the garden as best we could receiving just enough moisture from one snowstorm to make it possible.  Though I planted into some of the driest dust and clods I'd ever seen, I am always amazed that the little seeds still come up after a magical kiss from the irrigation water.  But the cold held on!  The peppers and melons struggled to push through as soil temps fell, getting weaker by the day.  The anxiety of possibly losing the melon crop weighed heavy on me, but I kept it to myself. 

Then after two weeks they started to poke through!  Their numbers thinned by the struggle, the remaining seedlings look enough to be a crop.  But here came the heat and relentless wind!  Tomato plants and emerging seedlings burned to a crisp regardless of how much water we poured on!  And finally a little relief, but now look at the weeds!!..... 

Ah, the fun of farming the desert.  But if it stays this dry, those melons will sure be sweet!! 

Thank you for continued support of Larga Vista Ranch! 
     The Wiley Family