Thursday, November 1, 2007
The November Harvest Calendar
It’s a funny time at the markets right now. The sun is lower, the shadows are longer, and all the crops you’d expect this time of year are in evidence, but so are many lingering reminders of summer. Of course, it’s all due to the unusually warm autumn New York’s had. Good tomatoes are still in abundance, as are eggplants, green beans, and even a few everbearing strawberries – strange enough in November alone, never mind piled next to the parsnips, chestnuts, and brussel sprouts.
The River Garden’s fresh flowers seem to be behaving more appropriately, which unfortunately means they’re almost all gone. But there are still gloriously fragrant buckets of fresh eucalyptus for sale next to the wreaths of dried wheat, chili peppers, and lavender from the year’s second harvest. And elsewhere there are domed carpets of chrysanthemums – expectant harbingers to next month’s cyclamen, amaryllis, and poinsettias.
Barring yet another Indian summer, many of autumn’s harvests do finish this month. By November’s end, the field grown apples, beets, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, fennel, mesclun, and pears will all be harvested, so make the most of these crops while you can.
It’s also a good time to enjoy leeks, onions, potatoes, winter squash, and turnips, because, though we’ll probably be dipping into cold storage reserves for these crops by mid-month, the produce will still be as fresh as it’s going to be until next year, if you catch my drift. And pay particular attention to pumpkins. Their harvest is over now, and they’re only available from cold storage for the next 4 weeks.
As always, this information is available in the sidebar harvest calendar over there on the right all month. The information comes from a guide published by the CENYC, which runs the Greenmarket & New Farmer Development Project. Of course, the best way to familiarize yourself with what's in season where you live is to visit farmer's markets in your area at least every couple of weeks. I truly learn the most of all from the farmers themselves. So ask questions at the market – it’s the best way to find out which crops are not only available, but at their peak. To locate markets near you in the US, check the Zip or City Quick Search at Local Harvest.
Happy autumn, and happy November!