Thursday, August 26, 2010

What's in Store...for August 28th

This weekend's headliner will be Silver Moon from 9-11 AM. In addition to the music, we also have these great vendors:

Team Miller-seasonal produce, squash, tomatoes, and peppers (check out the Vendor Spotlight this week)
St. Andrew's-muffins and coffee
Stuart J. Lippman-birdhouses, crocheted washclothes, and butterfly houses
Pauline Seidl-bracelets, key chains, and funky wine bottles
Ray Underwood-wood-worked hangings and decorations
Steve Heuer-seasonal produce, squash, tomatoes, and peppers
DAP's-baking mixes
Kurt Lantz-totally salmonella free eggs and jewelry
Tom Cisco-wood carvings

Salmonella find links 2 Iowa farms to egg recall

(AP)-Investigators found salmonella in chicken feed at Wright County Egg that was used by that farm and also Hillandale Farms. Authorities also found additional samples of salmonella in other locations at Wright County Egg. More than 550 million eggs from the two farms were recalled this month after they were linked to salmonella poisoning in several states.

If the eggs you purchased recently were tainted or part of the massive egg recall, you might consider purchasing some eggs at the farmers' market!

For the full story about the egg recall, check out this link, and enjoy your perfectly safe farmers' market eggs!

Vendor Spotlight: Team Miller's Homestead Produce

Team Miller

This is Team Miller's second year to sell at the market, and you probably recognize Wendy, Jessica, Katheryn, Richard, and Casey by now. The kids are a great addition to the market and have done a lot of work to expand their products. They specialize in freshly baked breads and cookies but also sell produce such as asparagus, strawberries, tomatoes, and peppers. They also keep bees and sell local honey. Katheryn makes soaps and jewelry, and they often feature items such as painted rocks and plants.

They choose to come to the market almost every Saturday, and it's been a great way to teach the kids responsibility, discipline, forethought, and perserverence. Wendy homeschools the kids, and she never misses a good opportunity to throw in some entrepreneurship. Plus, you can't miss out on the friendly atmosphere at our market!

In the words of Wendy,  the most rewarding part of the market is "getting to know the other vendors. They are incredible people!" Recipes have been swapped, and the Millers have learned a good deal about various skills just by chatting with other vendors and visitors to the market. It really shows their diligence since many vendors are just dog-tired at the end of the market season. There's so much to keep up with, and the Millers are involved in 4-H, the Jefferson County Beekeepers Association, and volunteer work with Meals on Wheels. It's amazing the things that the Millers get done, and they still do a great job of returning each week with a smile and good food.

If you'd like to find out more about the Millers, drop by the market this weekend. If that won't work for you, or if you have a specific request for a product, please feel free to drop them an email:

Dates to Remember

September 4th: The market will be closed for the holiday. Woooooohooooooo! Isn't Labor Day grand?

September 11th: Remembrance Day, a special event where we'll try to honor the victims of September 11th, our military personnel, and local emergency management personnel. There will be free cake for people in uniform! (Don't confuse uniform with costume. We know some of you pranksters out there, and you don't get to eat cake...unless you happen to be a prankster who happens to be a fireman, cop, EMT, Sgt...)

September 18th: Fall Festival in De Soto. For a list of goings-on that day, please visit the Chamber's website. (Seriously, the Fall Festival 5K is the only 5K in Jefferson County that is relatively flat. Take advantage of it!)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

What's In Store...for August 21st

Our music this weekend will be Larry Bay with his guitar, and the kids will have plenty of sidewalk chalk to cover the world! We won't tell if some adults want to use some as well; we know how much fun it is. The list of vendors this week is short. We've hit a bit of a lull while folks are taking stock of their remaining goods and gearing up for fall planting. (My lettuce beds need attention too!) However, we usually add some more vendors on Friday, so check back in the afternoon if there's someone specific you'd like to see.

  • St. Andrew's with coffee and muffins
  • Stuart J. Lippman with wooden birdhouses and knitted and crocheted items
  • Steve Heuer with seasonal produce; peppers, tomatoes, potatoes, etc
  • Dan Buttry with peppers, potatoes, tomatoes, and trellis
We'll see you Saturday morning!

Rams Pre-Season Opener

No, this isn't a review of the Ram's first "game" (although, I think we need to work on developing an offensive line that can carry the ball and protect our million dollar quarterback.) However, there were some vendors who made it to the game last week, and they were caught doing something scandalous! They didn't hold up signs about how great the De Soto Farmers' Market is and throw perfectly good tomatoes after lackluster calls, but they did get caught on the Kiss Cam. I was unable to track down a picture, but David and Elaine Carter were caught on the big screen. Below are the best photos we have of them, but I'll continue to try to find a blackmail photo of their memorable moment.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

What's in Store...for August 14th

This Saturday, August 14th, is a special day at the market. It is one of our Art Mart dates, so there will be more artisans at the market than normal. If you're looking to pick up a gift for someone or just want to see some of the handy things that locals make, then please drop by. Here's the artisan line-up for Saturday:
  • Padre's Gallery
  • Stuart J. Lippman
  • Pauline Seidl
  • Lori Dycus
  • Barb Weston
  • Joann Lippmann
We also have several other vendors for Saturday:
DAPS General Store with baking mixes
St. Andrew's with muffins and coffee
DeSoto Historical Society with information about De Soto's historic past
Less Stress with massages and chit-chat

Cyndi Lou's Produce with produce...but she sold out early last weekend, so if you missed her, you'll have to sacrafice a little sleep to get there earlier.

And the winners are...

Last weekend's Tomato Fest was a well-attended event, and His Royal Highness, the Tomato King presided with dignity and...well, you be the judge from the photos...but I think there was a fair amount of diginity and grandeur!
Our Tomato King (septer provided by Hamel & Rowe)
The winners in the various categories were as follows:

Biggest Tomato topped the scales at 1.59 pounds, submitted by David Carter of Carter's Produce.

The Smallest Tomato, the size and shape of a jelly bean, was consumed by the Tomato King to verify that it was, in fact, a tomato after spectators were skeptical. Incidentally, no weight was obtained before it was consumed. It was submitted by Kim Mahoney.
The Tomato King and the ever-supportive Court Jester

Jillian Lutz submitted the tomato with the Most Outrageous Shape, a siamese-twin tomato with the halves joined at the stem.
The "Miss Congeniality"/Best Decorated category drew entries in both the adult and youth divisions. Sean Mahoney was praised for his originality with his winning entry of a spider formed from tomatoes, frosting, and paper clips. Gail Kniffen won the adult honors with her "Mr. Tomato Head" entry.

11th Central Missouri Vegetable & Greenhouse Tour

This is a bit of a drive from De Soto, but it might interest some of you. (We've been discussing doing one of these in our area, but we haven't had the time to devote to it just yet. If you'd like to volunteer to plan one, let us know.)

Central Missouri Vegetable & Greenhouse Tour
Some tour features will be:
  • Green bean picker demonstrated (weather permitting)
  • Used ornamental greenhouse structure moved to farm for soil grown tomato system with drop down side walls
  • New packing/sorting facility shown (GAP compliant?)
  • Growing vegetables for your own stores
  • 2 million BTU wood fired boiler
Sponsored by:
  • Morgan County Ext. Center
  • Missouri Department of Ag
  • Central Missouri Produce Auction
  • Morgan County Seeds
  • University of Missouri Extension (MU Extension)
When: Wednesday, September 1st, 2010 Rain or Shine
Where: Meet at the Central Missouri Produce Auction to visit 3 nearby growers of quality fresh produce.

Schedule: (you are welcome to arrive up until noon)
10:00 AM Gather & visit ‘on your own’ the auction
11 until noon Pick up a lunch box compliments of MVGA
12:15 PM A few words from the tour sponsors
12:30 Leave to the first farm*
* Tour will conclude about 3:30 (about one hour per farm). Choose from one of two tour routes. See detail below.

To get your complimentary lunch, a RSVP is needed by Aug. 30th; provide a name and how many will be in your group. Email or call James Quinn; phone 573-634-2824; e-mail


Located on Highway E, 12 miles south of US 50 or 10 miles north of Versailles.

Central Missouri Produce Auction
37808 Highway E
Fortuna, MO 65034
Auction Facility - 660-337-6227 (Auction days only)
Directions to the farms will be provided the day of the tour. The closest is ½ mile away & the furthest just a tad over 10 miles.

Tour A

First stop/new grower to this tour
Irvin Martin
Irvin has been using a Pixall green bean picker for a couple of years. He successively plants green beans throughout the growing season. Weather permitting the green bean picker will be demonstrated. Bring a bag, as what is picked can’t be stored for the next auction. Rumor has it MVGA is buying the beans!

Second stop/was on the 2008 tour
Paul Shirk
Paul inquired early in 2010 about how to make a new packing/grading/sorting facility ‘GAP’ compliant. So James Quinn resourced what looked reasonable on the web and sent him a ‘packet’. Trouble was, it was probably over 200 pages. Paul will show you what he has come up with. GAP is short for ‘good agricultural requirements’ and is a voluntary program. Some large buyers are asking their growers to become GAP certified. There were no fixed rules or designs for a farm facility like this, but a lot of recommendations for how to meet GAP requirements.

Third stop/new grower to this tour
Philip Shirk (yep, Paul’s brother)
Philip got a new toy this winter, a 2 million BTU wood fired boiler that is wood chip fired (we say a 1 million version of this at Harvey Zimmerman’s last year). Philip needed a larger unit to heat 12,000 sq ft of greenhouse ornamentals and 3,000 sq ft of greenhouse tomatoes. Philip also grows 2,200 mums. For field crops he has ‘a little bit of everything’ for their on farm store sales. He produces some field tomatoes for the auction and as well as a pumpkin field about ½ mile away from the farm place, which will shown last. Paul and Philip have 2 other brothers growing produce, with all the sons learning from their father, Eugene. Eugene’s place is right next door, and if we’re lucky he’ll join us too.

Tour B

First stop/new grower to this tour
Ronald and Denise Nolt- Nolt’s Farm Market
The Nolts have 3 stores which most of their more than 20 acres of vegetables are used to supply. They buy as needed from the auction to round out their needs, as well as sell surpluses. They grow a variety of vegetables, including sweet corn, melons, tomatoes, and a number of others. They also produce fall mums. Their farm is just to the west of the auction with the fields visible from the dock.

Second stop/was on the 2008 tour
James Leid
James was one of a number of growers who picked up some greenhouse structures from Dix Nursery, which was a very large spring plant supplier until a couple of years ago. He brought the structure back and produced tomatoes in it this year. James is one of a just a few growers to sell strawberries at the auction. He has a variety of field vegetables. This year he tried some herbicides with residual activity against germinating weeds- Sandea in the row middles between black plastic beds & Command around some pumpkins.

Third stop (repeat from first stop of Tour A)
Irvin Martin
Irvin has been using a Pixall green bean picker for a couple of years. He successively plants green beans throughout the growing season. Weather permitting the green bean picker will be demonstrated. Bring a bag, as what is picked can’t be stored for the next auction. Rumor has it MVGA is buying the beans!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

What's in Store...for August 7th

This week's line-up includes loads of great vendors. (Artisans are denoted with an "A".)
  • Amanda Hendrickson (A)
  • Bardenherer Wine Cellars guessed
  • Carter's Produce with potatoes, peppers, squash, tomatoes and bread
  • Community Gardens with produce from their garden at Loving Care and the Alternative School plot
  • Dan Buttry with potatoes, corn, green beans, and wooden trellises
  • Julie Ott with squash, tomatoes, peppers, and hopefully corn
  • Karen Allison with rabbits, live goats, and farm animal t-shirts and such
  • Kurt Lantz with fresh eggs
  • Lisa Uzzle (A) with soy candles
  • Margaret Pillen with jams, jellies, and quilts
  • Mt. Olive UMC with baked goods
  • Shenandoah Soaps (A) with various soaps and handmade bags
  • Steve Heuer with tomatoes, squash, cucumbers, and peppers
  • Team Miller with tomatoes, peppers, and baked goods
  • The Lippmans (A) with crocheted items, birdhouses, and birdfeeders
  • Wood Unlimited (A) with cedar furniture and yard art
Don't forget that the band plays from 9-11 AM and there are several contests that you may want to enter. The Bug Doctor and Healing Hands Chiropractic will be at the market as well. They are fabulous sponsors! Jefferson Regional Medical Center will also have someone on-hand.

Tomatoes Everywhere This Saturday!

This weekend is Tomato Fest, and if you were blessed with rain that soaked (not the torrential downpour that knocked tomatoes off the vine), then you're just about ready for Saturday. Here are the specifics in case you need a recap:

His Highness, the Royal Tomato King will preside over two different competitions. First, there will be a Tomato Contest. You can enter tomatoes in four categories:
1. Biggest Tomato
2. Smallest Tomato
3. Most Outrageously Shaped Tomato
4. Miss Congeniality/Personality (for the best decorated tomato; watch that's rough on tomatoes)

Each category has an adult and youth division, so please bring your entries regardless of your age. The Biggest Tomato will be determined based on weight, and the other categories will be at the discretion of the Tomato King; may he be forever fair and just. Entries must be at the market by 8:30 AM.

The second contest that day will be a Vegetable Sculpture Competition. Using fruits and vegetables that can be grown in Missouri (no exotics please, and that means bananas and other things that don't grow here), construct a vegetable sculpture. There will be youth and adult divisions. Winners will be determined by the Tomato King, and entries must be at the market by 8:30 AM.

During the band's break at 10 AM, we'll announce the illustrious winners, and the Tomato King will bestow gifts or certificates on the winners.

Cooking Demonstrations, Part II

This Saturday, Darlene Payne will be our "in loco" chef, and that doesn't mean she's crazy...well, it doesn't necessarily mean that she isn't either. She has agreed to serve as our resident chef at 8:30, 9:30, 10:30, and 11:30, which might mean she is a little crazy. She'll be making a wonderful vegetable stir fry, and after the success of last weekend's demonstrations, you can bet it will be well attended. Samples will be provided, and we'll let you know which of the ingredients can be purchased at the market as well.

Happy eating!

Upcoming Training

Selling Directly to Consumers: A Beginning Farmer Workshop
August 18, 2010 – 3:30 to 8:30 pm
Columbia, MO

Everything you wanted to know to start selling your farm products directly to consumers!
• What direct market channels work best for you?
• What are chefs and consumers looking for when they buy local products?
• What good sales techniques will make your produce sell quickly?
• How do you make your booth at the farmers’ market really stand out?
• How can simple food safety and post-harvest handling practices ensure the quality that keeps customers coming back?

Tour the Wednesday Columbia Farmers’ Market with Chef Mike Odette, Sycamore Restaurant

Taste Great Local Produce from a Chef’s Perspective

Presentations will be by Chef Mike Odette, Columbia Farmers’ Market Master Caroline Todd, MU Extension Horticulture Specialist Jim Quinn and Local Foods Specialist Mary Hendrickson.

Workshop Registration: Preregister by August 13, 2010. Find registration form at Cost of the workshop is $20 for those who preregister and includes educational materials and food. Walk-ins accepted but cost $30 with no food guaranteed. Find registration form at Contact Sharon Naylor at 573-882-3776 or

3:30 pm Welcome and Tour
4:30 pm Nutrition Selling Points, Flavor and Quality of Local Produce, Tasting of Local Food (includes heavy appetizers prepared by Sycamore Restaurant)
6:15 pm Post-Harvest Handling and Food Safety
7:00 Evaluating Direct Market Channels, Sales Strategies
7:45 Product Merchandizing
8:30 pm Workshop Ends

Sponsored by the Missouri Beginning Farmer Program a joint project of Jefferson Institute and University of Missouri Extension.

Our Showing at the Fair

There were several folks from the market that won prizes at the Jefferson County Fair, and we'd like to take a moment to highlight their efforts. Some are vendors, others are volunteers, and there are a couple of regular shoppers as well. Congratulations on your hard work and diligence!
  • Christie Jonas in the Fresh Vegetables, Fruits and Farm Products category
  • Robert W. Lalk in the Largest Vegetable/Fruit Contest
  • Lisa Uzzle in Crafts
  • Donna Walker in Fresh Vegetables, Fruits and Farm Products; Canned Food; and Baked Foods
  • Jim Walker in Fresh Vegetables, Fruits and Farm Products
  • Robin Warren in Largest Vegetable/Fruit Contest; Fresh Vegetables, Fruits and Farm Products; Canned Food; Baked Foods; Textiles and Clothing; Arts; and Crafts
Congratulations to all the winners!