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  • Comments Off on Earth Day Weekend, treats from our earth, treats for yours.
    Posted by Volante Farms in Theme Additions on

    There is another big weekend underway at Volante’s.

    In the Greenhouse

    This year for Earth Day, give a little something back to your Earth on a literally local level. Find out what your yard needs to help it thrive in the coming year.

    Free Soil Testing Saturday April 21, 10-3

    This Saturday from 10-3 we will be offering free soil testing to customers. Please bring in 1 or 2 samples from your lawn or garden and allow our friend, John Howell of the New England Vegetable and Berry Grower’s Association,

    to help you whip your soil into something more than just dirt. A cup of dry soil will be enough for him to tell you where you stand and how your plants can stand taller, greener, and stronger.

    In the Farmstand

    Also thought you might be interested in some Homegrown produce news. We have brought three crates of baby kale into the kitchen this week, destined for ravioli and sandwiches it sounded like. The kale had over-wintered in the fields and thanks to the mild spring gave a good growth spurt before bolting to seed. In the same vein we are chasing many of last year’s scallions around the field, before the plow turns them under or they go to seed. Which means Homegrown Scallions on the stand this weekend, while supplies last.

    Have you signed up for our email list yet? You should, one of our lucky email subscribers will be given this lovely prize of goodies from Boston's Best Coffees and Mann Orchards. I've been meaning to give it away for a couple of weeks now, so I am announcing and closing the contest at the same time! Email us at info@volantefarms.com to join up if you aren't part of it already. Winner will know by Monday!

    But perhaps the hottest news to hit the farm, and as yet unconfirmed, is the rumor that Homegrown Asparagus will be making an appearance. I know, we told you it would be another year still, but the plants seem well established and are putting up some pretty massive shoots. So, we are going to pick sparingly over the next few weeks and hopefully you will be among the first to try our newest crop.

    Asparagus apparently shoots faster than any of us imagined!

    In the Field

    This week we were able to get corn and beans seeded in the field. Today we were able to cover them and store some of this unseasonable warmth in the soil with them. We also transplanted our first lettuce crop of the year out into the field, and uncovered our strawberries and garlic from their winter mulch beds.

    The fields having been so dry, the local wildlife is venturing out more than usual. There are heaps of turtles sunning on logs this spring as the ponds dry up. More noticeable is a rather unafraid coyote that has made a home at our Standish fields. She comes by to say hello almost every time we are over there lately, and well, she could be a little more coy. Neighbors, keep an eye on your little pets! The Blue Herons returned to the pond as well, and the hawks and crows have set up and early residence. Even the salamanders are showing up in the greenhouses, choosing moisture over temperature. Enjoy the gallery of this week’s suburban wildlife below.

    To top it off we had to get the irrigation systems going earlier than ever to combat this drought we are in. Weather reports forecast this weekend as having a good chance for some April showers, so get your gardening done early then come back down for a toasty lunch special to enjoy some well deserved rain.

    Posted in | Comments Off on Earth Day Weekend, treats from our earth, treats for yours.
    Comments Off on We’re springing up all over
    Posted by Volante Farms in Theme Additions on

    Are you feeling inundated by Volante’s lately? Not enough yet? Ok, well here’s what’s going on this week: we are media darlings, we are educating the masses, and leafing out in the fields.

    Food Section, Boston Globe

    So, you can get this recipe from the Boston Globe and the ingredients from us, and make it yourself with ease. Or you can do what I did and buy it right out of the Farm Kitchen, ready to heat and eat. Smoked Mozzarella, White Bean, and Sage Nella Pasta Ravioli with Sorpressata and Kale.

    Did you pick up a Boston Globe today? There was a fantastic write-up on Volante’s by Andrea Pyenson talking about the farm’s transformation into its new state. Additionally, there was a recipe by @VolanteFarmChef, Todd, to exhibit his cooking style and highlight some of the great dishes you can make with Volante’s offerings or just as easily pick up here and say you did.

    If you’d like to read it now, click on over to Boston.com and give it a look: In Needham, an old farm sprouts new premises. And as always, thanks for making us this successful and giving us the confidence to move forward.

    Spring Workshops

    It is also mid April, which means our Spring Gardening Workshops are underway. We had a great workshop on Pruning last weekend with Mike. If you missed it, much of the information covered is available on our Planting Guides page here.

    Celosia and Zinnias attract butterflies in the heat of summer, but what gets them here early in spring? Find out Saturday!

    Linda Mauro will give a free workshop on Butterfly and Hummingbird Gardening this Saturday April 14 at 10 am.

    She will talk about the types of plants best suited to attracted these fascinating visitors to your garden and show you what we have in stock now for early visitors and tell you what to keep an eye out for later season blooms.

    Also workshop attendees will receive a 10% off coupon to use for their garden shopping this weekend, or lunch, or both!

    The Field

    Spring peas push their way through a dry and dusty earth, looking for a drop of those elusive April Showers. Notice the coyote paw print in the top left? They are looking for a nice spring meal too.

    It has been so long, it seems since I have had a chance to even talk about what has been going on out in the field. Remember that place? That’s right new readers, we actually are a farm that grows its own vegetables. So a few weeks ago, right before we opened, we got peas, beets, and carrots in the ground at our Standish fields. Shortly thereafter we followed with scallions, radish, spinach, chard and parsley at the home field. Plus a few new trials, broccoli raab and summer turnips.

    We covered the peas with floating row cover to help push them a little, and lo and behold, despite the dryness, they are sprouting and up above ground! The bare-ground, or not-covered, peas are also up, as are some of the radish and turnips. Our asparagus crop is entering its second year and is starting to poke through a little as well. Rhubarb and mint are coming out of hibernation too.

    The first asparagus spear of the season pokes up its head.

    The best news, we plowed for corn today, and all things timely, will plant first corn tomorrow morning.

    Farm Stand Sampling

    We had a great week with all of our new and old vendors who stopped by to introduce you to their local products. Just a heads up that this weekend we will continue to bring in friends with free food for you to try. If you want to schedule your snacking more accurately, like us on Facebook, where we update happenings most rapidly. Hint for this weekend: Bacon.

    The early corn ground, plowed, fed, and ready for planting tomorrow.

    Posted in | Comments Off on We’re springing up all over
    Comments Off on Passover Menu
    Posted by Volante Farms in Theme Additions on

    So just a few days into operation, we are pleased to realize we get to be part of your family traditions in a whole new way. Volantes has often been open around Easter so that those who wanted flowers and lilies could get them. Now, with our year-round Farmstand, fresh and local foods are ready for your spring family table as well. Consider starting a new tradition this year by shopping with us for your Spring holiday.

    The Farmstand has brought in some traditional, though new to us, foods to help you set your table this holiday: kohlrabi,

    Roasted Herb Chicken Breast bursts with fragrant Thyme and the sweet flavors of slow cooked Parsnip and Apple. It is a great option as part of your Passover meal, or as seen here with steamed Green Beans and Spring Pea Ravioli. All are available ready to heat and serve from the Farm Kitchen.

    sunchokes, and fresh horseradish included.

    In our new Farm Kitchen, Todd is pleased to present his Passover menu for this year. He has been honing these dishes for years, to exemplify the tastes and traditions you are looking for on your holiday table.

    While your holiday table may depend on that certain dish that mom can make just right, consider how helpful it will be if all those side dishes are already taken care of.

    The Farm Kitchen is stocked with plenty of prepared, ready to heat and serve entrees, vegetables, and sides to completely outfit your table. Pick them up in the refrigerated case closest to the deli. These dishes are not Kosher, but do try to adhere to the taste and tradition you are looking for. Plus, Todd loves hearing your thoughts so give these a shot and be sure to let him know what you think.

    Passover Menu

    • Honey Glazed Salmon
    • Braised Lamb Shank with Pomegranate & Apricots
    • Herb Roasted Chicken with Parsnips & Apples
    • Lemon Roasted Chicken Leg
    • Smoked Trout Salad
    • Roasted Salmon Salad
    • Applesauce
    • Mashed Yams with Pomegranate
    • Roasted Asparagus
    • Roasted Carrots with Coriander
    • Roasted Beets with Horseradish
    • Carrot Pomegranate Soup
    • Sweet Potato Pancakes
    • Potato Pancakes
    • Matzo Ball Soup

    The Farmstand, Kitchen, and Greenhouse will be open 8-7 Monday-Friday, 8-6 Saturday, and closed Easter Sunday. Stop in and see the new place, and pick up ingredients for dinner, a meal ready to go, a sweet bakery dessert, and/or a lovely white Easter Lily or potted flowering hostess gift for the meal you head to this weekend.

    We have plenty of Easter lilies ready to brighten your holiday get-together.

    Posted in | Comments Off on Passover Menu
    Comments Off on Now Open!
    Posted by Volante Farms in Theme Additions on

    Welcome to the all new Volante Farms!

    The Volante Family welcomes visitors to the New Farmstand. From Left to Right: Katie Volante, David Volante w/ Ryan Volante, Needham Selectman Dan Matthews, State Senator Richard Ross, Al Volante, Steve Volante, Melodie Volante, State Congresswoman Monica Garlik, Teri Volante Boardman, Steve Boardman.

    After a very long winter, a long year of adjustments and compromises, and years in the planning, the new farmstand was ready to open on schedule this Saturday! Encompassing a seasonal garden center, produce market, local-centric grocery, bakery, deli and prepared food kitchen, and flanked by a state of the art greenhouse offering home-grown annuals and locally hardy perennials, Volante Farms has transformed into a destination shopping spot for the next era.

    Many thanks go to the many customers, local and state officials, employees and their families, and contractors who helped keep us operating through construction and helped ensure that everything stayed on track.

    Saturday’s opening was an unqualified success. The enthusiasm that you, our customers, brought pouring through the doors all day was wonderful. Thank you for your kind words of support and helpful suggestions to continue to enhance your experience at the farm.

    A brand new space doesn't begin to describe it. Light, airy, open, and easy to shop are all great aspects to the new beautiful space.

    The coming days and weeks will continue to bring enhancements and improvements as finishing touches and refinements come together. This is a work in progress and we will adjust to our and your needs as they become apparent.

    Customers lined up early to get a first peek at the new space, and they didn't stop pouring in the doors all day.

    These first week we will have many of our new and old vendors sampling their wares to help you familiarize yourselves with these exciting local products.

    And as gardening season gets under way expect another great series of spring workshops in our greenhouse.

    Our new regular hours of 8-6 on weekends and 8-7 during the week will give you even more hours in the day to shop with us, so please take advantage of them.

    Violas, pansies, bulbs and blooming perennials are ready to get started on spring, now that temperatures have come back in line. Stop by soon for a greenhouse stroll with a cup of Volante Farms coffee and pastry.

    Follow us here on the blog, or on Facebook, or twitter, and of course make sure you are on our email list. send an email to info@volantefarms.com to join, or with any questions or comments.

    Posted in | Comments Off on Now Open!