Tag Archives | organic vegetables

2013 Marks 20 years at Tecolote Farm!

We are thrilled to celebrate 20 full years farming the rich blackland prairie soils of our beloved home farm this year.  So much has happened to us, to Austin, to eastern Travis County in two decades, not the least of which is the community of people that has in one way or another sprung up via an affiliation with our farm.  Buoyed by this network, we are ready to start the next twenty years strong, with many new projects in the wings, and a strong, committed team. Speaking of our Farm Crew of Destiny, we just received this lovely, hand-crafted Christmas present from 2012 crew member and rising manager, Earl, who put this enduring Tecolote Farm philosophy into a physical reminder for the wash area: Nice work, Earl! Additionally, this pastry chef-turned-farmer co-wrote our grant application to the Austin Food and Wine Alliance , and we were selected! AFWA received 30 applications, from which they had to choose only 3 grant award winners. We were proud to accept the grant, which will help us get our longstanding plans off the ground to 1. raise heritage breeds of pastured pork and 2. offer subsidized CSA shares for low income families in the area. Thank you to the grant selection committee and to the Board of Austin Food and Wine Alliance- we know we were in good company and you had hard choices to make. These are just a couple of the big things happening in 2013, our 20th anniversary year! We are accepting new CSA members for the 2013 season. Prices are not going up and we’ll be delivering the same Awesome, not Perfect vegetables that have kept Austin happy for 20 years! Check out our CSA page for more information.   Merry Christmas~ Happy New Year!

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Summertime, and the livin’ is easy…

Summertime, and the cookin’ is easy: slice up some cucumbers with tomatoes, sweet onions, and pour on a little balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Voila! You can find the ingredients for easy Greek Salad or for grilled okra or Roasted New Mexican Chiles at one of the Saturday farmers markets where we go these days: Downtown Austin (SFC famers market downtown) or Sunset Valley Farmers Market. Both are Saturdays from 9 am to 1 pm. At the downtown market, find us at the shady northwest corner (on 5th and San Antonio) next to the coffee and breakfast tacos.

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Field and Feast visits Tecolote

  Cecilia Nasti came out to the farm on the same evening that our crew was shooting skeet after work. She wasn’t ruffled, however, to hear gunshots at an organic farm. Her “real job” at Texas Parks and Wildlife has her covering hunting issues as well as natural places of beauty for their radio pieces about Texas Parks.  She recently did a story on nothing other than… skeet shooting. It was a true pleasure to hang out on the back deck with this Austin original and our one-time neighbor. Her love of food, gardening, and cooking is evident: her Field and Feast show, which airs on KUT every weekend and took the place of Growing Concerns, is her own baby. She does it to spread the good word about farm-to-table connections. Her podcast about Tecolote is airing on KUT this Saturday, April 28, at 11:55 a.m., or Sunday, April 30, at 11:01 a.m. You can also hear the podcast anytime from her website.

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The Farm Crew of Destiny

We have a fantastic farm crew this season, and we are so grateful. They are smart, engaging, curious, dedicated, funny, and reliable. They have been logging many 9 and 10 plus hour days, yet still they bring smiles and great attitudes to the farm day after day. The Farm Crew of Destiny this spring includes many return farmers. The returnees have wisdom and encouragement to share with the first-time farmhands, or those new to Tecolote’s quick pace and attention to detail. The crew has been working so efficiently that post-work happy hours are well-deserved and promising to be frequent.  Teamwork, cooperation, group responsibility, and communication are thriving, and it shows. It doesn’t hurt that new manager Lorig has a relentless dedication to smooth sailing and positive feedback, or that Meche has been with us for so many years. We started the season with an Orientation Day in late March, complete with greenhouse cooling system briefings, doggie distractions,a full “parking lot” of mini-trucks, a few riveting volleyball games, and finally, more time on the porch.              

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Farmer David on Community-Supported Agriculture

Outside of the Agro-industrial Pipeline by David Pitre Happy New Year! Here’s to Health and Peace for all of us. As always, we are excited about the coming year on the farm. One of the common traits successful farmers share is a poor memory, which allows us to specifically forget the trials, tribulations, and sore muscles of the past year while getting all giddy about the fresh young plants in the greenhouse ready to go in the ground. It’s wonderful to be able to start fresh each year. As many of you know, we have struggled with water issues on our farm. This year we are starting to develop for farming new land about 12 miles east of us. We have planted onions there and hope to grow some of our potatoes, melons, and winter squash.  The soil there is wonderfully rich and water appears to be plentiful. We are very thankful that the opportunity for the new land arose and that we are making it work as a new farm. You, our CSA members and regular farmers market shoppers, may not know it, but you are doing something radical.  You are supporting and investing in a relationship that flies in the face of the anonymous global marketplace.  You are creating a direct connection between the growing of the food that sustains you and your family. It is a personal relationship built on trust and respect. As we make decisions on the farm, and grow and harvest produce, we have many of your faces in our minds. It is similar to the visions of family or friends you hold as you cook in your kitchen. You have their health and happiness in mind as you cook, and it guides how you do it. This gives great meaning to what we […]

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January 2012 Flood

The first month of the new year is coming to a close, and a soggy, fecund close it is. Photos of Decker Creek and most of Tecolote Farm flooding have been astounding many of you. Living on a perennial creek quite literally has its Ups and Downs! We have seen the creek rise like this several times in the 19 years we’ve lived here, but last Wednesday night’s rain took the prize for the most rain we’ve ever had in 24 hours. We topped 6 inches here at the main farm, and the River Farm in Bastrop County had closer to 7 inches! The vegetables are out of the flood plain, though, by design, so we were able to come to market last Saturday with an abundant supply of greens, roots, herbs, and broccoli. We’ll be back again for the first Saturday of February at the downtown market. The Swiss Chard is more beautiful than ever, with its rainbow of Bright Light colors fully saturated in the overcast wet environment. Hurray for replenishment!   [nggallery id=1]

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New well for the River Farm

After some weary years of wrestling with water lines and digging trenches for buried pipe and electric cable to a new small production well at our original Webberville farm, we are going to Hawaii going to do it again! At the new River Farm in Utley, Bastrop County, down on the Colorado River, about 12 miles east of our current farm. The well-diggers were there all day yesterday, and are at it again today, trying to find a good, dependable source of well water for us for many more decades of organic vegetable production. Fingers crossed, hopes high, looking for water when it’s oh-so-dry. We welcome all well-wishers (haha), prayers, hopeful thoughts, thunderstorms, etc.

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Many thanks to Keeshi + Photo and Twisted String for their photography contributions