2024-04-15 newsletter

Greetings from 12 Seasons Farm,

The tomato quality is superb right now! The added heat and length of
day creates a sweeter and deeper flavor profile on the tomatoes.
Strawberry season is winding down, but we have really good papaya if you
are looking for some delicious sweet fruit.

The Tuesday Naples market has officially ended. Thank you to those
who supported that market.

Tuesday we are scheduled to be at the Captiva Farmers Market. We plan
to be there through the end of April and will likely resume deliveries
at that point to Sanibel and Captiva. Bailey’s General Store on Captiva
is starting to carry our tomatoes. Tomorrow will be our first delivery

Here is our schedule for this week:

TUESDAY CAPTIVA MARKET : Tuesday, 9am-1pm at South
Seas Island Resort , Captiva. Buy directly from the
stand or place a preorder online by Sunday, 8 pm and
pick it up at the market.

: Please place an order online
before TUESDAY, 8 pm. For farm pick-up on Thursday, please come to 14840
Old Olga Rd., Ft. Myers, FL 33905.

8am-noon at the Promenade Shops at Bonita Bay. Buy directly from the
stand or place a preorder online by Thursday, 8 pm. If
possible, please pick up after 10:30 for pre-orders as
this will reduce the long line that often forms early in the morning.
When picking up, you are welcome to skip the line and go down the south
side of the tent to the back of our van where Annika will help you get
your order and grab any add-ons you might want.

Orders can be placed online at 12seasonsfarm.com
** **

This is what we are harvesting:

  • Strawberries
  • Mulberries
  • Summercrisp Lettuce
  • Baby Butterhead Lettuce
  • Large Leaf Butterhead Lettuce
  • Romaine Lettuce (limited by the heat)
  • Arugula
  • Curly Kale
  • Flat Kale
  • Mixed Kale (multiple varieties)
  • Swiss Chard
  • Zucchini
  • Cucumbers
  • Eggplant
  • Sweet Italian Bull’s Horn Peppers
  • Broccolini
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Green onions
  • Large onions
  • Celery
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Campari tomatoes
  • Heirloom/Specialty tomatoes
  • Red Slicing tomatoes
  • Round radish
  • Daikon radish
  • Cilantro
  • Dill
  • Curled Parsley
  • Flat Parsley
  • Lemongrass (preorder only)
  • Ray Ruby Grapefruit
  • Papaya
  • Starfruit (just about over)
  • Banana
  • Sunflowers
  • SW FL Saw Palmetto Honey
  • SW FL Wildflower Honey
  • Strawberry Butter

Mike and I at the Captiva market last Tuesday. Mike and Justine left
this weekend to head back to Canada where they have their own beginnings
of a farm in Ontario near Ottawa. They plan to be back next winter!

We have beautiful cherry tomatoes right now! So fruity, sweet, and
delicious!! We are trying a new trellising and cherry tomato management
system where we drop entire rows of the trellised cherry vines by
cutting the lower horizontal strings and assisting the other strings to
move down the posts. Each week they get lowered maybe 6-12 inches. It
compresses the base of the vines but allows for us to keep the added top
growth in check rather than it becoming too voluminous at the top,
creasing, and eventually shading itself out. Justin is helping us learn
this new technique that he has been trying at the Pennsylvania organic
farm he works at in the summer.

The red tomatoes are really good right now too. As mentioned above,
the increased heat and daylength really seem to make the tomatoes so
full-flavored and sweet. We are eating them like a tree fruit right

I harvested 3 bunches of bananas today so have added them to the
online store.

Jeanna with daughter Myrah have been helping out with deliveries on
Thursday since Carrie left. We are blessed with having the Small Family
help in so many different capacities here at 12 Seasons Farm over the
past 6 seasons.

Justin is in his final week here at the farm for this season. He has
been with us for 10 seasons. He is my assistant and provides so much
amazing help, management, and skill. He loves organic agriculture and is
a great promoter of it having worked on so many different organic farms
since high school. He is pictured above with a repair he completed on a
chair using the previous season’s irrigation drip tape. He will be
greatly missed as usual.

Pictured above is Sarah and Hannah Shiner along with Annika. The
Shiner Family is visiting and working at 12 Seasons Farm for the month
of April. They are planning to return to the Philippines where they have
10 acres. They came here to learn more about production farming to help
them in their efforts in the Philippines.

Alexios at market after being given a French bread sandwich with 12
Seasons Farm tomatoes, microgreens, salt, and olive oil. It is fabulous
and was given to us by Ileana with Pleyoo Mircogreens who sells at the
Promenade Bonita Springs Farmers Market. What a tasty treat at the end
of market!

Each Friday, we prepare a large amount of excess produce for an
organization called Cultivate Abundance. They come in and “glean”
produce that we might have overproduction on or be slightly blemished,
but of still good eating quality. The produce gets distributed to
hundreds of families each Friday afternoon in Immokalee who are in need
of food assistance. We are told that many of the people that receive
this produce actually work in the tomato fields but are not interested
in eating those tomatoes (I certainly wouldn’t either). They show high
preference for the produce and tomatoes from 12 Seasons Farm. Last week
we sent nearly 1000 lbs. of tomatoes plus many other vegetables
including lettuce, swiss chard, peppers, zucs, and cucs.

Here is Rick Burnette, the program and technical director of
Cultivate Abundance after loading produce from 12 Seasons. He visits
farms, gardens, and yards of people who want to donate fruit from their
gardens and trees. The produce from 12 Seasons is either sold to them at
a reduced price or donated. In addition to distributing wholesome food,
they encourage personal dignity by training people in home gardening,
working with ethnically relevant foods and distributing plant material
so people can cultivate abundance in their own yards. If you are looking
for an organization to assist in a volunteer capacity or for a charity
to donate finances to, please consider Cultivate Abundance. And they
support local producers by gleaning their excess produce and thereby
reducing food waste. It is a great model that I would love to see
replicated on a national level.

Cultivate Abundance can use more funds to keep up their work of
providing healthy food options for those in need! They do hero work in
our SWFL community. It is a great pleasure to see the extra produce go
to people who appreciate fresh and delicious food.

Here is a link to learn more about their work. Please consider
donating to their great cause.


Boys! We will miss the Harrington Family. They left early Sunday
morning to head back to Maine. Their current plan is to return next

The 12 Seasons Team is a special community. We work hard together and
strive for an edifying dynamic workplace, farm and home. Several people
as of late have left and are returning to more northern, cooler
latitudes. Big thank you to Carrie, Anthony, Mike and Justine, and the
Harrington Clan who played tremendous roles here this season and have
finished their time with us! Well done!

Though our numbers have dwindled in size, we still have a great team
here and we look forward to serving you.

Have a great week!

Danny, Vicki, the kids, and the 12 Seasons Team






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