May 2017 Produce Parable
Adam Calder, Produce Manager

Local Asparagus

Spring is in full swing in Iowa, and as such the produce department is getting busier by the day.  There’s local organic rhubarb from Small Potatoes Farm in Minburn.  We’ve got assorted micro-greens from Organic Greens in Kalona.  The herbs from Mariposa Farms in Grinnell are as aromatic, tasty and fresh as they always are and yet seem to have even more vigor in them as the days get longer and brighter. The asparagus from Iowa Asparagus LLC in Ankeny, with its firm green stalks lightly kissed with a purple blush at the tip and glistening with beads of dew, is so beautiful it could be the centerfold in a produce magazine.  Don’t forget about the Iowa grown oyster mushrooms, in bulk from the Iowa Mushroom Company in Ankeny and in packages from JoyGrow in Boone.

The local produce isn’t getting to have all the fun.  We have assorted hanging baskets from Hassevort Farm in Leon.  These baskets are bursting with petunias, geraniums and many other plants that grow flowery trails up and over the sides of the basket.  If you water them once a week and give them a little fertilizer one a month they will continue to bloom and thrive for the rest of the summer. It wouldn’t be spring without an armada of seedlings grown with love from Lonna at Onion Creek Farm. If you are looking for seedling herbs, paste tomatoes, red slicer tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, non-red tomatoes (green, orange, pink, yellow), hot peppers, sweet peppers or kale then we have got you covered.

If you are looking to do some more gardening, then be sure to check out the selection of seed packets we have in stock from Seed Savers Exchange in Decorah.  These seeds are all from open-pollinated plants so they grow true season after season, and many of them are certified organic.  There are seeds for herbs, tomatoes, peppers, prairie flowers, sunflowers, lettuce, spinach, eggplant, zucchini and so much more.  So far this season we’ve sold over 1,200 packets of seeds, but the season is not over yet!

On the horizon we will soon have strawberries from Hassevoort Farm, and then shortly after that we will also have their cherry tomatoes back in the co-op.  If you recall from last fall, these cherry tomatoes are absolutely packed with tasty tomato flavor.  They are the essence of a satisfying summer time snack, each one bursting with juicy umami joy.  If you want to stay on top of what’s new in the Produce Department, be sure to follow Wheatsfield’s Instagram account and then you will be the first to know when local produce arrives and you will also get to see beautiful pictures of our fresh local produce as it arrives