Hello, January! The Latest News from Farm & Larder and Bella Luna Farms

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Happy New Year! As 2016 gets underway, we would first like to convey a heartfelt thanks: we have been delivering our weekly boxes filled with fresh, seasonal fare and housemade provisions for two years now! We could not do it without you and truly appreciate your enthusiastic feedback and support. To our new 2016 subscribers, welcome; we cannot wait to share the best of the farm with you in the year ahead.

As we wind down from the busy holiday season—we are so pleased many of you continue to enjoy giving Nonna Pat’s Sunday Supper gift baskets to your loved ones, thank you!—here at the farm it is now time for planning. The year has dawned with beautiful clear and cold weather, which is especially welcome after December’s record rainfall. The dry spell has afforded us more opportunities to work in some of our new growing areas, heavily mulched now for winter with composted straw and hay from the barns, as well as add nest boxes for our new flock of pullets (young laying hens) which are just beginning to lay, ensuring a great egg supply this year.

January is also the month for slating out upcoming cheesemaking, gardening and cooking classes for the spring, and for pouring through seed and plant catalogs looking for new vegetable varieties to order for this summer.

We are especially excited about ordering seeds from a company called Seeds from Italy—curved Annelino Romano beans, Cipollini onions, radicchios and Fava dei Nonni, to name a few. This summer we will also be planting a very special heirloom: tiny Trasimeno beans from Lake Trasimeno, already grown once this past season from the small package of precious legumes brought back from our trip to Italy last winter. Our fingers have been busy shelling the tiny, pea-sized beans from the dried vines curing in the hayloft, and we hope to have enough of a harvest in the fall to share this very special crop with our subscribers.

We hope your New Year is off to a terrific start—here’s to good growing and great eating in 2016!

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