News & Views:  Peek in the Box (Market Report) 

News and announcements about Plow Creek’s community-supported agriculture program and its weekly subscription produce boxes.

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Hello!Sample CSA share

This warm weather has me thinking about fresh vegetables and fruits more than I usually do at this point in the season and I bet it has been on your mind too. Spring is only a handful of days away!

This is our second year of offering a CSA and we wanted to share with you come exciting news about this year’s box.

For those of you who do not know what a CSA is it is: It is basically a farm share. You sign up with us to receive a box of Plow Creek Farm’s vegetables and fruit each week for the growing season (18 or 22 weeks depending on pick-up location). The box varies throughout the season, just like produce varies throughout the season at a farmers market. One of the best things about our CSA is that we strive to have fruit in almost every box! Check out our CSA page for a look at what a few of the boxes from last year looked like:

We deliver CSA boxes close to where you live: The Peoria Farmers Market, Naperville, Evanston, and you can pick up boxes right from our farm as well.

This year we have two incentives to thank you for signing up:

1. Chance to win $100 Plow Creek Farm sausage sampler pack.

Sign up by March 19 at midnight, and we will enter your name in a drawing for a chance to win a 15 pound sausage sampler pack ($100 value) from our farm. The sausage is from one of our pasture-raised, heritage breed pigs and will include a sample of our bratwurst, Italian sausage, breakfast sausage, chorizo, and polish sausage. The sampler package will be delivered with your first box of the season (June 1).

2. $25 off your share for each referral.

After last year’s successful CSA season, we are looking to grow our CSA membership and we would love help getting the word out. As a thank you for helping to spread the word, we would like to offer $25 off your share for each friend you refer to our CSA program. Just let them know to mention how they found out about us when they sign up.

If you want more information or want to sign up go to

We look forward to seeing you in June,

Jim, Natalie, Camille, Matthew, and Allan

People may now sign up for our 2016 CSA at Plow Creek Farm’s CSA program is a partnership between Plow Creek Farm and it’s CSA members to care for God’s good creation. We grow vegetables and fruit in a sustainable way so you and your family can enjoy healthy fresh local food. Read about our mission and practices. This is how it works: You buy a CSA share to receive a box of Plow Creek Farm’s produce each week for the growing season (18 or 22 weeks depending on pick-up location). The 18 week season for Peoria pick-up runs from June-September. The 22 week season for Evanston, Naperville, and on-farm pick up runs from June-October. Here’s what people said about last year.
Loved our CSA boxes! We had so much fun learning about new produce, how to prepare cook and store it as well as trying new goods.
I was thrilled to find a local farm making available fruit and vegetables on a weekly basis that I could pick up. The freshness of the food was great. It smelled so good that I tested some of it right out of the box. The newsletter each week announcing what would be in the box gave me a chance to plan out what meals I could use the produce in and the recipe were a great addition. I was telling everyone that I was a member of a local CSA and shared with them what it was all about. I look forward to next year. Sign me up!
A great experience and very worthwhile for the whole family!
I absolutely loved my share each week! I have participated in other CSAs, and none of them have even come close to the quantity and quality of the box I received from Plow Creek! I can’t wait for ext year’s boxes!
This was my first experience with a CSA and I think I’m hooked. It was great to have such a variety of fresh veggies every week, some things we wouldn’t normally buy were a fun challenge.

We are happy our 2015 CSA has been fully subscribed. Thank you to all our subscribers. We’re looking forward to a great season. Our apologies to others who wanted to sign up, but we have committed to as much as we believe we can handle.

Plow Creek Farm’s Vegetable and Fruit CSA Share is now available. The CSA season is 18 weeks and runs from the first week of June to the last week in September. For details, see

This week’s box will include some combination of the following: snow peas, sugar snap peas, new potatoes, blueberries, broccoli, sweet turnips, kale, lettuce, radishes, green onions, and garlic.

This week’s CSA participants should receive some of the following: Strawberries, herbs, salad mix, garlic scapes, honey, radishes.

We will make our first CSA distributions this week. People will receive some of the following: rhurbarb, popcorn, salad greens, herbs, radishes, and bread from Plow Creek Bakery. I will try to post the week’s list on the Peek in the Box page weekly.

I’m sorry to report that our raspberry field is currently overwhelmed with mold. The berries were looking good yesterday, but another day of unseasonably hot weather took its toll. Due to a simultaneous lull in garden output, we do not have any other produce to take the berries’ place in your boxes.

We had expected to send another 3/4 to 1 pint per share this week. But my effort to fill even a 9 pint order this morning proved impossible as 3 out of every 4 ripe berries had noticable mold. We will have to abandon them for now. There is reason to suspect that the cooler temperatures later this week will prove inhospitable to mold while ripening enough new berries for a half pint per share next week.

Just a note on storing root vegetables…

It is important when storing root vegetables (beets, carrots, radishes, turnips, etc.) that you remove the greens immediately! If you do not remove the greens, they attempt to continue growing, and suck moisture out of the root. This is why, if you leave a bunch of beets in the refrigerator with their greens still attached, they will become soft and sort of mushy after a week or so. However, if the greens are removed, beets can keep for weeks or even months.

Also, there is no need to just toss the root crop greens in the compost! Most of them are edible and very nutritious. Beets greens and turnip greens especially are great for soups, casseroles, or just sauteed with garlic and olive oil. Radish greens are edible but less commonly used. Carrot greens should not be eaten, to my knowledge.

-tatiana : )

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