Sunday, September 12, 2010

Farm City Fair

I listened to the light rain pittering onto the skylight above our bed this morning and wondered about slithering around on the roof to pick my entrants for the Blue Ribbon Competition down on Bergen Street, part of today's Farm City Fair.

But I harvested my crops, as well as all my little red strawberries. And I picked some miscellaneous flowers, though hardly anything is left on the terrace at the moment. The Plectranthus "Mona Lavender" is beginning to look very good, though. This is the beginning its season. A brilliant lilac-blue.

Then we carried the basket down to the fair, whose Brooklyn oompah music we could hear from home.

At 1pm the fair was in full swing on Bergen Street, despite the on again off again mizzling rain and the first cold breeze of September. Jackets and sweaters appeared.

Here is Christina's blue flint corn, grown on the corner of Smith and Bergen.

And the Red Hook Community Farm, though I don't know where the pears and grapes came from...

Farmacy had a stand - they are permanently based on Henry Street - and was serving genu-ine soda fountain drinks.

Scratch Bread was next door.

And I was unable to walk on by these delectable $3 treats.

They were raking in the dough...

Totally worth it: aioli, speck, pickled peppers, on scrumptious, pillowy bread with a chewy crust.

Back to the Greenthumb stand, where I unpacked my basket and had my entrants numbered: I am #21.

My little posy, my cherry tomatoes, a 'Bountiful Basket', three stunted green peppers and one yellow cherry tomato, entered in Best Tasting Tomato...

Edie Stone suggested I enter one rose separately in Best Rose category, so I did.

There was no category for fruit but a new one was made for the strawberries.

And then I met Harri. Well, actually, first I met his cucuzza, and I laughed, because beside it, mine disappeared. His was entered as, er, Longest Summer Squash, mine as...heaviest.

Here's Harri. Holding his cucuzza. Abandon all hope, ye who enter squash here.


Harri gardens on Staten Island at the Pavilion Horticulture Garden, 6,000 square feet, he says, behind the Pavilion Medical Center. The land was donated by the owner of the building, who had turned down cash offers to convert the lot into a car park. Harri's other entries included bright yellow scotch bonnets, big green peppers, long black eggplants, and...this cucuzza. He is a regular participant in Greenthumb Harvest Competitions, which until now I did not know existed.

Now I must go back down there and see how we all did. It is raining.

A perfect evening for pozole. The recipe is at 66 Square Feet (the Food).

08/13/10 - read this post to see the Blue Ribbons the roof farm won!


  1. OK - that's it. You've tipped me over the edge...I have some pancetta, 3 ripe-enough cherry tomatoes and some quinoa-and-rye bread.Early elevenses for me!

  2. Are you sure that's not one of those long balloons clowns shape into animals?!

    Never heard of the competition at GT either. But then, I am not part of the program.

  3. P.S. Though Harri's just the kind of guy to make a county fair worth going to.

  4. what a beautiful post, your photos are gorgeous

  5. Just visited the food. OMG the pozole.

    xo Jane

  6. Looks like a combination of street fair and county fair there...yikes, too many people for this country mouse! Sweet that they created a category for your beautiful strawberries. The picture of Hari and his cucuzza is hilarious...yep, you thought yours was big, and now you see what big really is!

  7. dinahmow - also make some aioli :-)

    Frank - meeting a few of the other gardeners was the best part. I think the harvest things used to be just for Greenthumb gardens. Now they are open to all gardeners. Still not a great turn out...

    Thank you, Stratoz...

    Jane - ha, OMG indeed. The saga.

    QC - it was a only a block's-worth of jampack, but Vince felt the way you did!

  8. Your bounty makes a beautiful still life picture. Hope the stripey aubergine won something....

  9. Dit lyk na soveel pret. Wens Pretoria het meer sulke tipe goed gehad.

  10. ...thumbs up for the owner of the building for not giving in to the green eyed monster and gas guzzling cars! For without him that THING that is as tall as a man would not have been! How tall is Harry by the way?

  11. Anjo - maar jou boeremark klink nogal lekker.

    Hen - it came second xxx

    marita - I'd say Harri was about 5'9.

  12. What a harvest! beautiful beautiful mouth-watering veg. Love the bounty basket. Ok - I'm all fired up and inspired to get my vegiie garden going here. At the moment it's bare earth mixed with a thick layer of this season's compost, straw manure from Milnerton....just waiting to be colonised.


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