Wet weather affecting crops

The wet weather is having only slight effects on the crops at Two Toad Farm. Due to the gentle slopes and fairly well drained soil (Beckett), there is no puddling of water. The wetness is causing some loss of young, tender leaves of salad mix, the bottoms of some pac chois, and making slugs a problem for the farm for the first time ever (in my entire farming/gardening career). Another slight problem is that the peas are not sweetening up as they should. They are growing well, but without the sun, they are not producing as much sugar as they could (varieties like sugar Anne, sugar sprint, and sugar snap are usually very sweet).

Some new allies have emerged from the soil this week. Bee assassins catch and eat cabbage moths and other flying pests. Unfortunately they also eat my honey bees, but hopefully they stick to slower flyers. I hope they eat the grasshoppers.

Broccoli is coming for the CSA next week, and summer squashes are starting to size up, we’ll keep an eye on those). I will also be vigilant in the tomatoes watching for signs of early blight that devistated so many tomatoes accross Maine last year.

Keep thinking sunshine,



CSA Distribution for Week of 23 JUN 2009

Don’t forget that you can cook radishes many different ways (folks have been roasting them in the oven with garlic and olive oil), and that the salad mix is all baby versions of larger cooking greens so you can cook with them (they cook FAST, be careful.. great in morning egg dishes) if you’ve had enough salads. The braising mix is great cooked or raw.

This may change based on tomorrow’s harvest, but the plan is:

This week’s full share consists of the following:

2 Pac Choi (me quing choi)

1 head lettuce (red cross)

1 bunch of baby beets/greens (bull’s blood beet)

1 bunch garlic scapes (red Russian and MY FAVORITE!!!! )

1 bunch Hakurei turnips

snap peas (sugar anne, amount to be determined after harvest)

1 bunch radishes (rover)

½ lb braising mix (mizuna, red giant mustard, tatsoi, vitamin green, kale, ruby streaks mustard)

1 kohlrabi (white eder)

1 bunch green onions (red baron –red or stutgarder –yellow)

½ lb salad mix (“all greens” mix)

Half shares will be be 1/2 of this…. smaller bunches will be set aside for the half share folks but it’s up to you to pick out smaller heads of lettuce from the crates.

From the cold, wet, muddy field….


June 09, 2009 CSA Distribution

CSA Shares consisted of the following:

2 large bunches of Kale, 1 bunch of baby bunching greens (choice of purple mustard, mizuna, or red kale), one large Black Summer pac choi, bunch of green onions, 1 lb of salad mix, 1 bunch of radishes, and for those who wanted, a bunch of arugula.

Next week, look forward to winterbor kale (more common variety), and bright lights swiss chard. Also Red Cross lettuce (head), and Tropicana lettuce (head). Sweet, baby turnips will also make a comeback… and I’ve been watching the first large plantings of peas. There MAY be some peas for the CSA, but if so, a small amount.

Please send recipe questions and Ideas for a new section of the website coming soon.

Thank you,


CSA is SOLD OUT: Distribution has begun.

Come to Two Toad Farm’s Fresh Market every Saturday 9:-Noon at Great Brook Animal Care on Rt 202 in Lebanon, Maine.

Tuesday, June 02 was the first distribution of the 2009 Summer CSA. A full share included: 1 bunch of mizuna, 1 bunch of kale, 1 buch of scallions, 2 bunches of radishes, and 1 pound of salad mix. Shares will continue to grow larger as more veggies become ready for harvest. Some limited crops will be available for retail sale during CSA pickups each Tuesday at Farmfield Nursery and Greenhouses from 4:-7:pm.

Monday, June 01, I woke up to a light frost at the S. Lebanon gardens, but the W. Lebanon feilds escaped. The cold nights have made soil temperatures low, and dry weather has made germination of direct seeded crops challenging. Both times it has rained this spring, it rained for a week, followed by life in the desert. That is all part of the variability of farming in Southern Maine. Despite a lot of crop failures (the list is long), the farm is starting to fill up. Potatoes already need hilling, peas are flowering, and the first planting of beans that actually lived is up and growing well. I’ve been planting hundreds of pepper, tomato, and cucumber seedlingsand the first planting of zukes and summer squash are already in and settled. The first feild planting of pac chois are ready for harvest, and a small, early crop of broccoli is ready for market this Saturday, June 06 while the large plantings are not too far behind.

Hoping for some rain every week… and some sun every week.

Jordan Pike

Two Toad Farm

Almost Sold Out

The CSA is almost SOLD OUT. First CSA pick up will begin on Tuesday June 02, 2009. See the CSA tab above for more information.

  • Also come buy fresh, local, organic produce from 9AM-Noon each Saturday at Great Brook Animal Care on 202 in Lebanon, Maine.
  • 14 different types of produce were at last Saturday’s market including: 4 types of pac chois, 2 types of Kale, Raab, POUNDS AND POUNDS of salad mix, lettuce mix, head lettuce, baby beets, radishes (gourmet French breakfast), scallions, hakurei turnips, swiss chard…. More coming THIS SATURDAY May 23!!


First Day at Market

Saturday, May 09 is Two Toad Farm’s first day at market for the 2009 season. Come to Great Brook Animal Care on Rt 202 from 9:am-Noon for some early spring crops. The farm has some veggies grown in a tiny greenhouse. This greenhouse is to test possibility for a Spring 2010 CSA. Crops for the 2009 summer CSA were slightly delayed by cold nights, and then scorching dry heat, but with this rain It looks like the farm will hit it’s target start date of June 02. I will decide early next week based on the crops if distribution will start a week early on May 26. Things are looking good. Remember, there is less produce in the spring, and it will build from there (click the CSA button above to learn more about the 2009 Summer CSA. So for now, it’s back to 16 hour days…….

Jordan Pike


Now Purchase Shares with your Visa or Mastercard!

Many FULL shares left, but HALF shares are sold out.

You can now go to Farmfeild Nursery and Greenhouses and purchase shares in person (in full) using your Visa or Mastercard. The transaction fee charged by the credit card company (about 2.2%) will be added to the share price.

Send the farm an email to be put on the half share waiting list if you cannot find another couple or family to split a full share with. As people who already have half shares find friends to split a half share with, thier half shares go back up for grabs. This has been rare, though.

Just last week, we were having nights in the mid 20’s. Now we are in a heat wave and I am planting like mad. Without rain, however, direct seeded crops (carrots, beets, radishes, parsnips, peas)will have a hard germinating in the dry heat. We need about 1/2″ of rain every other night for a week for things to get back to ideal. Irrigation (like last year) will be the key to spring success.

Some crops will be available at market on Saturday May, 09 at our NEW SATURDAY MARKET Location: Great Brook Animal Care on 202 in South Lebanon. CSA pick up (along with limited and specialty crops for retail sale) will still be at Farmfeild Nursery and Greenhouses on 202 in East Lebanon.

Also, new this year: Cut Flowers. Stay tuned for updates.

If you have sent in a check and sign-up sheet to become a member of the CSA, but have not received a confirmation from me (phone call or email, or I’ve deposited your check), please contact the farm to make sure nothing was lost in the mail.

Thank you to all of the CSA members who make Two Toad Farm’s 2009 season possible. Without them, I would not have grown ANY veggies this year for retail sale.


Jordan Pike


Plenty of FULL SHARES left!! Three Half shares left.

Two Toad Farm has thousands of seedlings growing, and has planted the greenhouse full of cold-hardy crops. Garlic is just starting to come up, and soil samples are being sent out to assist in fertility management for the 2009 season. Fall-planted cover crops are starting to green up with this year’s early spring, and are already beginning to add fertility to the soil.

To sign up for a CSA share, use the form on the homepage, email me, or call me directly. Please call with your wholesale and or contract growing questions and orders (restaraunts/natural food stores/institutions).

Keep thinking SPRING!

Jordan Pike

Fresh, local produce: Lebanon, Maine

Two Toad Farm is a small, diversified vegetable farm that began growing commercially in 2008. The majority of the 1.5 acres in production is leased from community members who are committed to preserving local farm land. The mission of Two Toad Farm is to protect local farmland by putting it into viable, organic vegetable production. Affordable organic produce for the local community and stable farm jobs is the result. Two Toad Farm is interested in leasing other fields of 2 acres or more in Lebanon, Maine and surrounding towns for future expansion.

What We Offer:

* 50 summer vegetable shares by becoming a member of our Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program.

* Retail sales at fresh markets in Lebanon and surrounding areas.

* Wholesale sales to restaurants and natural food stores.

Seedlings are up!

Testing out the new blog.

About 5,000 seedlings are already planted fot he 2009 summer CSA season. I am extremely excited about the coming year. The response has been great so far, and I expect to sell out of CSA shares some time in early April(reserve your share soon!). For those of you who have signed up for a half share (only 4 left), you can upgrade to a full share if you find friends or a couple to split it with. One full share is cheaper than two half shares, you can cooperate on the pick ups, and you get to split it how you see fit (you can even cut stuff in half, something the farm can’t do!).

Don’t hesitate to email if you have any questions, suggestions, or feedback.

Thank you,

Jordan Pike

Organic Vegetable Grower

Two Toad Farm

Lebanon, Maine