The Nitty Gritty Dirt Week 2

In Your Share This Week

you'll have one bag of mixed greens and lettuces including beet greens and North Lights Chard greens. You'll also get a bunch of radishes including French Breakfast, Pink Beauty and Scarlet Globe. Robin and Gigi like to saute' the radishes for a short time and toss them with pasta and greens.

For those of you who remember the radish butter recipe but don't remember where you put it, here it is again.

Radish butter for Radish Sandwiches:
A good rdish sandwich can be nothing more than sweet butter spread on bread and topped with sliced radishes and sea salt. But you might find that this is an easier way for getting the Radishes and butter on quickly (and getting them to stay on), especially if you're making radish sandwiches for a crowd.
6 radishes - French Breakfast or a mixture of radishes4 tablespoons of unsalted butter.
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zestsea salt

1. Wash and trim the radishes. If the leaves are tender and fresh, set a dozen or so aside, stems removed. Slice the radishes into thin rounds, then crosswise into narrow strips. Each should be tipped with color. Chop the leaves. You should have about 1/2 cup.
2. Mix the butter with the lemon zest until it's soft, then stir in the chopped radishes, radish leaves and a pinch of salt. Spread on slices of bread and serve.
From Local Flavors by Deborah Madison.


It is the year of the babies at Nitty Gritty Dirt Farm. Many of you have already heard about or seen at our first farm festival the 16 (instead of 6 feeders) baby pigs we got as orphans who are now divided into the bullies and the babies and are growing fast. You may also have heard about and/or seen the fifty baby turkeys – now rapidly growing into the “Bronzes” and the “Whites” and “Narragansetts”. And the 25 baby chicks. And all the baby bunnies – not exactly even sure what the count is – about 25 I think. And just this past Monday morning, Apple – our Scottish Highlander heifer has given birth to an adorable little fuzzy brown heifer calf we have named Rhubarb. So – we have named this the “Year of the babies.” So far, except for the long, cold, slow spring, things are looking pretty good at the farm.

Now that we are getting some warmer weather, the crops are starting to really grow – as are the weeds. We have been having difficulty getting the big round bales of old hay or straw mulch that we like to put down between our veggie rows and so the weeds are growing almost faster than we can keep up. We think the shortage is due to last year being such a poor hay year that most farmers had to feed poorer quality and older hay than they normally do and so it simply isn’t available to mulch our fields.We are hoping that because of all the rain this spring that this will be a much better hay year. We just got 101 bales of 1st crop alfalfa and grass hay which we all stacked into barn – after an already long day of weeding and baking and, and, and …. Gigi is off picking up the second load which will probably also be about 100 bales. It is a good feeling to have that much good hay already stacked in the barn ready to feed our critters next winter. We will still need a couple of hundred bales of 2nd crop to feed the sheep and goats but are pretty sure that we will be able to get it too.

We are nearly finished planting. Just a few cantaloupe and basil, parsley, sage and flowers to still put in. Tomorrow after the shares are packed and leave the farm, the interns will lay the last four rows of plastic mulch into which we will plant those last few things.We have all been doing a lot of weeding – all the beets, chard, lettuces, carrots and potatoes. The weeding is not at all fun – and takes so long. With 250 foot rows, it can be pretty dispiriting to work all day and still not finish one row. But with a lot of hands plucking weeds, it does get done.

This year, we have put drip irrigation on all of the tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, melons, squash and cukes. We want to be ready in case it is another year with prolonged drought. We are also ready to lay drip lines for the smaller crops like beets and carrots. If we do get hay to mulch with – we will be in better shape – since it not only holds down weed growth, but it also helps with retaining soil moisture.

This summer we have five interns working with us. Bonnie and Adam are our only full time interns and they arrived in a snow storm in the first week of April They are a hard working couple who with their dog Lady will be with us through the end of the season. Erina, Maria, and Rebecca are all part time – working two or three days each week. We hope that many of you will have an opportunity to meet our interns throughout the summer.

We encourage you to visit the farm sometime – or several times – this summer. The first Sunday of each month we are setting aside for shareholder visits. June 1 was our Blessing Farm Festival and on July 1 if you want to visit - you can come any time between 2:30 and 5:00 pm. July 1 we won’t have anything formal – just farm tours, a chance to talk to the farmers and see the crops and animals – and have something to eat. Then August 3 is our Midsummer Abundance Festival – beginning at 2:30 with lots of food, music and fun. September 7 will be informal visiting after 3:00 pm., and October 5 will be our End of the Harvest Festival with our Annual Farm Games tournament.You can also visit other times – just remember that we are a working farm and if you visit on working days – you may just have to follow us around – or perhaps even find yourself with a hoe in your hand.

And that reminds me – if you have a group from your workplace, your family, your church, your club, etc – and you would like to plan a work day at the farm – we’d love to talk to you. We like to have groups plan to work about 3 – 4 hours and then we’ll feed you. Just let us know and we can find an appropriate work project for your group – from mulching – harvesting – building a cow barn – planting – fencing – painting - ????

The Bread Box:
The bread this week is a County Wheat. Enjoy!


Use the addresses to google or mapquest or look up the drop site from your particular location. Keep in mind that the folks at the drop sites are volunteers, allowing us to use their space (and in some cases, their homes) as drop sites. Be nice to them. We couldn't do this without them. If you have any questions about your share etc., you should ask us, not them. They have enough to do....as do we all. All deliveries occur on Thursday afternoons. Approximate drop site times are listed below each location. The end times vary but you should pick up your share as early as possible. Look for the NITTY GRITTY DIRT FARM DROP SITE signs at your delivery locations along with lists to check your name off when you pick up, and a description of exactly what you should take.

Nitty Gritty Dirt Farm
10386 Sunrise Road (Cty Rd 9)
Harris MN 55032

35 north past North Branch to the Harris Exit. Turn Right.
Go into Harris, cross RR tracks to stop sign. Turn Left
Go 2 blocks to County Rd 9, also called Sunrise Road. (at Heartbreakers Bar) Turn Right. Farm is 4 1/2 miles out on left side of road. Look for Nitty Gritty Dirt Farm sign.
Shares available from 3:00 to 6:00

United Theological Seminary 3000 5th Street NW, New Brighton MN 55112
694 to Silver Lake Road exit. Go south to 5th and turn west (right). Go three blocks to UTS. Follow driveway (left) to the maintenance garage at the far north end of the parking lot. Shares available after 3:30 PM to 6:00 PM.

Pilgrims United Church of Christ
8801 Rice Lake Road, Maple Grove MN 55369
Just off of Weaver Lake Road across from Rice Lake Elementary School. Use main church door. Shares available from 3:30 to 6:00.

Acadia Cafe
329 Cedar Avenue South, Minneapolis
NW corner of Cedar and Riverside. Park on Riverside or
in lot behind the cafe.
Shares available after 3:15 PM until 6:00 PM

Vincent Avenue
3646 Vincent Avenue North, Mpls MN 55412
1/2 block north of 36th Ave N, and 2 blocks south of Dowling. Park on the street. Shares available after 3:30 until 6:00 PM

Additional drop sites may be added as shares are sold. Drop Sites are subject to change but plenty of notice will be given and alternate sites will be within close proximity to the original drop site.


Robin Raudabaugh & Gigi Nauer

Nitty Gritty Dirt Farm

10386 Sunrise Road

PO Box 235

Harris MN 55032

(651) 226-1186


Also Nitty Gritty Goods Wool CSA
Robin Raudabaugh

We are a 15 acre Community Supported Agriculture farm providing a wide variety of fresh, organically and sustainably grown vegetables, fruit, lamb, pork, turkey and chicken. Located one hour north of the Twin Cities, we deliver to several metro locations. We are intentional about our organic and sustainable farming practices which include (but are not limited to): maintaining soil health through green and animal manures, compost, mulch, cover crops and crop rotations; Organic Pest Management to naturally monitor, prevent and control insects and other pests; maintaining animal health and well-being through the use of portable and loose housing and pasture rotations. Owner/operators Robin Raudabaugh and Gigi Nauer provide over 30 years experience in fruit, vegetable and livestock production, education and customer service. Our primary goal is to build community, relationships and personal health and well-being around good food and the intentional living that creates it. We’d love to have you join us.

Not every day is like this but we try.

Not every day is like this but we try.

Not every day is like this either.

Not every day is like this either.