Wednesday, July 31, 2013
Tomorrow, August 1st, is an Anglo Saxon/Pagan holiday called Lammas Day - or Loaf mass. Lammas Day also marks the approximate mid-point of summer.
For ancient Celtic farming communities, the beginning of August marked the beginning of the wheat harvest. Before the harvest, the stores of grain were low and the growth and success of the next crop was always at risk due to factors (like weather) that were out of their hands. Once harvest began, celebrations ensued to mark and rejoice in the harvest and bounty of the new crop of grains which would be harvested and stored for the winter months.
Here in North Carolina, I'm pretty sure that the wheat harvest happens earlier in the summer, but looking back on ancient harvest celebrations can give us a good perspective on the relative agricultural bounty that we enjoy here in Durham all year long. That is not to say that farming is without its hardships. This year, the excessive rain in the early part of the summer has had a negative impact on lots of farmers that sell their wares at the Market. Some farmers told me this week that they are expecting to see a lull in their harvests towards the end of August because they were unable to plant some crops during the rainy period.
This weekend, Durham Farmers' Market vendor, George O'Neal the owner of Lil Farm wrote a great piece about the risks and hardships of farming for the Chapel Hill News. George says, "It takes a real leap of faith to try your hand at all the tasks required to get a tomato from that little seed packet to grow into a plump summer treat on your plate. You have to suspend logic and all well-known business principles to try, over and over, to make a living growing food. All along, you hope that the risk will be out done by the reward".
Read the whole article here.
On this Lammas Day, let's celebrate the summer harvest, the bounty we enjoy, and the boundless optimism of farmers, and the support system that we have built for our local agricultural system! Oh yes, and the bread! There will be 4 excellent bakers at Market today and many of their breads contain North Carolina grown wheat!
And while you are celebrating, take a minute to pledge to shop at the Durham Farmers' Market (and other favorite Markets), in the annual I Love My Farmers' Market Celebration. This is run by the American Farmland Trust, a national non-profit that works to support farming and save farmland in the US!
To show your love for the Durham Farmers' Market, CLICK HERE
See you at the market!
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Wednesday July 31 - Storytime with Cynthia Raxter, 3:30-5:30. Local story teller Cynthia Raxter will be back to entertain kids of all ages with her stories!
Saturday August 3rd - Kick off of Farmers' Market Week! This Saturday, to celebrate National Farmers' Market week, we invite you to tell the vendors and the world why you shop at the Durham Farmers' Market. We'll have the Wall of Fame for you to write about your favorite things about the Market, there will be roving camera asking people to tell us about their favorite things about the Market. And, we'll be giving out Durham Farmers' Market fans to help you keep cool on these hot summer days!
Wednesday August 7th, 3:30pm - Quick Dinners from the Market Demo - Local blogger and cook Matt Lardie (greeneatsblog.com) will lead the Quick Dinners Demo on August 7th!
Saturday August 10th, 9am-Noon - National Can it Forward Day Details coming soon!
Wednesday August 14th, 3:30-5pm - Canning Demonstration! Learn how to make and can Salsa with Durham County Extension Agent Nekeira Morrison.
Fruits: Figs, Summer Apples, Blackberries, Blueberries, Cantaloupe, Peaches, Watermelon
Vegetables: BUTTER BEANS, PURPLE HULL PEAS, Artichokes, Arugula, Beans, Beets, Butternut Squash, Cabbage, Cherry Tomatoes, Corn, Cucumbers, Collards, Eggplant, Garlic, Green Onions, Herbs (including Holy Basil, Cilantro, Stevia, Thyme, Oregano, and Greek Oregano, Marjoram, Dill, Holy Basil, Bergamot, Chammomille, Bay, Lemon Balm), Kale, Kohlrabi, Leeks, Lettuce, Onions, Okra, Peppers - Sweet and Hot, Potatoes, Pea Shoots, Pumpkins, Radicchio, Salad Mix, Swiss Chard, Summer Squash, Tomatoes, Tomatillos, Zucchini
Meats: Beef, Chicken, Duck, Goat/Chevon, Pork
Chicken and Duck Eggs
Flowers: Celosia, Gomphrena, Tuberrose, Lisiasnthus, Black Eyed Susan, Dahlia, Statice, Lilly, Sunflower, and mixed Bouquets
Specialty Items: RAW HONEY!, Mustards, Flour, Yellow & White Cornmeal, Grits, Goat and Cow Milk Cheeses, Baked Goods - Breads, Pastries, & Pies, Preserves, Gluten Free Baked Goods, Fermented Items, Nut Butters, Pasta, Herbal Teas, Herbal Salves,
Crafts: Wood Crafts, Pottery, Goats Milk Soaps