Dear Urban Patchwork Farm Members,
I want to thank you again for your support and fall membership to your neighborhood Urban Patchwork Farm. By becoming a member you’re not just a bystander or consumer of local produce; you’re a member in a cooperative effort shared by neighbors who make local, community-grown food a reality in Austin.
It’s true, we ask more of our farm members than some typical CSA programs. That’s why we’re able to offer workshops, host harvest gatherings, donate produce to neighborhood families in need, and train more young farmers how to lead in the area of sustainable urban farming for the future.
Your membership and participation make a difference in your community.
This season nearly 50 families in Austin are participating in our cooperative styled farm communities. Now that Mother Nature has released us from the death grip of our record breaking summer (we’re still not out of the record drought conditions!), we can plan for our harvest and share pick up days you’ve been anticipating.
I’m looking forward to this season with you!
(founder, Urban Patchwork Neighborhood Farms)
Calendar and Scheduling Pick ups
Below you’ll find a calendar of pick up dates so you can plan ahead. If there’s a weekend you think you’ll be out of town, you can let us know in advance that you’ll pick up your share around 5pm on Friday just before the Saturday pick up. Alternatively, you can have a friend pick up on Saturday for you. If you or a friend aren’t able to pick up your share on a scheduled weekend, we’ll donate your share to a local food assistance program so a family in need can have some much needed fresh veggies.
As a reminder, each share is intended to provide you with generous portions of organically grown local veggies to eat over the course of a couple weeks, with the following exceptions:
- The first two share pick ups (Oct 29th and Nov 5th) are a split of a special harvest – the 1/2 available on Oct. 29th will be locally baked goods, eggs and veggies harvested from the farm plots. The second 1/2 (to be picked up on Nov. 5th) will be special wild harvests and preserved foods that we’re very excited about. It will include a workshop and extra recipes.
- December will have three pick ups in a row of moderately sized shares to accommodate for the fact that many families go out of town during the extended school holiday period. The fields and farmers will enjoy the rest, as well. All of this is reflected in the calendar below which is sized so you can print it for your fridge.
Scheduling Your Member Volunteer Hours
Your role as an active member of a community farm is critical. Likewise, we know you’ll enjoy the value and opportunity in spending time with your fellow farm members and volunteers. Some of you have already completed your eight hours of requested volunteer time helping us in the field or on administrative tasks, and we’ve had so much fun together!
There are many easy activities during the next five months for which we need help in order to keep things running smoothly. We’ve always got fun field work, but if something different suits you, we need folks to help take a shift giving out shares during the Saturday morning pick ups. If that sounds like a way you’d like to complete your two volunteer shifts, it would be a huge help! Please write to firstname.lastname@example.org to ask us about options and to schedule your two volunteer shifts. Thank you!
What’s in a Share and Where to Pick Up?
We anticipate this coming season to be special and abundant. Thanks to the Texas Cottage Food Bill we are now able to offer fresh baked goods, dried herbs and veggies, and canned jellies and preserves. These things can be eaten immediately or saved in your pantry for the weeks when there is no fresh harvest! In our ongoing effort to balance the desire to provide food year-round with the need to follow Mother Nature’s patterns and let the soil rest, this is a very exciting change to our previous efforts providing only fresh/perishable vegetables.
Each share should have approximately 5-8 different types of things to eat. We’ll aim for at least two servings of each. On weeks of harsh weather we’ll keep you posted and may make shares smaller. At a later date we’ll add more to your shares to balance the sizes throughout the season. If the weather or a major event causes us to cancel a share pick up day, we’ll make sure to add one to the end of the season calendar so you don’t miss out.
When you receive your shares you’re invited to take a look and ask us questions. If there’s something you want to swap out for more of something else, we’ll have a trade table where you can leave things you don’t want and pick up something new. We’ll provide several recipes each week, and we want you to share yours with us! At the end of the season we can compile them and create a special recipe book to chronicle how we all ate our seasonal goods.
Pick up times are from 9am – 11am on the Saturdays marked on your calendar below.
Violet Crown Neighborhood Farm members pick up at the 6701 Burnet Rd Market. Map and vendor location can be found here.
Cherrywood Neighborhood Farm members pick up at the home of Sue White, a farm landowner-member and member of the CNA Urban Farm task force. Location to be emailed to Cherrywood Farm Members