April 5th

Farming is immersed in constant changes.  Less than a month ago the seed catalogs were the only sign of plants to come.  The ewes had just been shorn, revealing their pregnancies previously covered by thick layers of wool.  The goats were moving a little slower each day as they neared their due dates.  The fields and the yard were shades of brown earth and dried grasses with hardly any signs of spring even though the winter had been mild. 

Today the trees have budded out and the grass is a vivid green.    One field is plowed and the others soon will be (after the new adjustment bar for the tractor arrives).    There are equipment repairs, and schedules to discuss and questions to answer.  

Twin lambs with Mom
There are lambs running to catch up to the ewes who are headed out to the hay feeder.  It can become quite noisy when the lambs cry out to find their mothers and the ewes answer back.  There are goat kids run and play and bumping the udders of their moms trying to get a little more milk.  They are small enough to fit through some larger holes and in fence and often escape making their way all along the fenceline much to the dismay of their mothers.  They crawl back through when they're hungry, and nap near mom. 

This is probably the same way she slept in the womb. 
There are turkey eggs in the incubator to rotate three times a day, and 95 little broiler chicks who arrived at the post office and are now growing rapidly in one of the hoop houses. 

This little one is 24 hours old
Warming under heat lamps

There are seeds in packages that also arrived in the mail.  There are racks with lights and shelves where the plants get their start.  There are seeds already sprouting underneath those lights with popsicle stick lables to help us keep track of what is in each flat of seedlings.    

Prepping lights in the seed house.


There are so many details that Robin keeps track of them in her farm notebook, an ongoing list of what needs to be done.  She has kept her notebooks all the way back to our first year as a CSA.  It is a good way to compare how the seasons have differed

In a year of intentional down-sizing, we seem to have gotten a little carried away in a few areas.  On Craigslist, Robin found an add for three barn cats to be given away.  (We know there is no such thing as a free critter).  Planning to take only two of them, Gigi was dispatched to Forest Lake to pick them up.  They were all very cute with sweet dispositions for barn cats.  Unable to make a decision, Gigi came home with all three.  One has since moved into house with us and has managed warm the hearts of the other pets.  The other two are quite happy sleeping on the hay in the barn, and parading around the farm as if they have lived here for there whole lives. 

Quartz, the new cat on the block, charming Marl
The other new addition arrived last Sunday from our friends, Kevin and Connie in Eyota.  Robin and Gigi drove down to pick up the calf with Robin's small pickup truck.  His name is Poundcake, Philly Cheesesteak, or Portabella depending on who you ask.   With an abundance of goat milk available, he is already drinking a gallon a day.  

Checking out the view through the side window.

We're looking forward to sharing the abundance from the farm with you again this season.  The membership form is below.  Fill it out and send it in with your payment.  Please fill out a form even if your information is the same as in the past.  Until next time...


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.