Farm FAQ

Questions about our Garden Start CSA

Q. What is a CSA and is it the right option for me?

A. “CSA” or community supported agriculture is a way for you to invest in local farms and get access to fresh produce that is grown right in your neck of the woods. A CSA is not only about getting a good deal on our organic produce, but more about supporting your local farmers and food systems. If you are looking for a way to support local growers in your area and would like to try a different variety of fresh produce (veg or farm fresh eggs) each week, our CSA may be right for you! Also, If you are looking to build community around sustainable and responsible local agriculture this is a great way of getting “plugged in”. We learn so much from our community of growers and believe that it is important to share growing successes and failures to help one another along the way. Our CSA’s are set up in a weekly pickup schedule right from our farm stand. Please reference our CSA page for more details about what we offer and when.

Q. How much space is needed for the GardenStart CSA share?

A. Precise square footage can be challenging to predict as there are many different factors to consider. Some people prefer intensive, close spaced planting, or intercropping, while others prefer standard space recommendations. In addition, some early season crops can be harvested completely in order to make room for later season crops (for example spinach, salad mix, etc. could be harvested and then replaced with tomatoes, peppers, etc). You could get by with less than 75 square feet if you planted intensively and even trellis things like cucumbers. Many people also pot things up to save garden space. Or if you want to give things more space you could use up twice as much as that. 

Q. How will I know when the garden starts are ready to pick up?

A. Garden starts will be ready as seasonally appropriate for Flagstaff’s growing season (usually starting in May and going through June) and dependent on weather patterns at that time. We will have a few pick ups for cool and warm season varieties and will be sending out emails when garden starts are ready. We work with growers at different skill levels and who have different capabilities to protect the seedlings. Some seasoned growers prefer “early” pick ups, which we are able to accommodate. Less seasoned growers prefer to get the seedling when it is “safest” to plant. Once you sign up, you will be added to the email list, which will provide more information as the season unfolds and will give your options of “early” pick up or the standard pick ups. In general plants are able to be picked up every week May-June. Sometimes emails end up in spam/junk folders so be sure to check there or add us to your contacts ahead of time to avoid this. Feel free to email us at farmforestdale@gmail.com if you have any questions or concerns! 

Q. Do you provide growing tips and instructions? 

A. We have been growing in this area for over 10 years and learn new things every year! We do have a lot to share about our experiences and it’s so exciting to do this every year with our share members. We will include planting recommendations and spacing in the emails before you pick up. 

Questions about our Egg CSA:

Q. What do I do if egg shares are sold out?

A. Get on our waitlist and we will reach out when more become available. Just email farmforestdale@gmail.com with the Subject Line “Egg Share Waitlist”, include your first/last name and phone number in the body of the email and we will add you to the waitlist for the next round.

Questions about our products:

Q. What’s in your potting mix? 

A. We mix our own potting soil on the farm with materials sustainably sourced and approved for organic production. It consists of coconut coir, perlite, vermiculite, and organic alfalfa. 

Cost$13/cubic ft.  More About our MixMany products available consist of peat moss, often making up to 90 percent of potting mix; however, peat moss is not a recycled or renewable resource and the harvest of it destroys valuable ecosystems. A good alternative to peat moss is coconut coir, which has similar properties as peat moss, but is an organic material recycled from the coconut industries.  We use coconut coir as the main ingredient in our mix.  Perlite and vermiculite are organic materials that add desired characteristics. The cavities in perlite help store nutrients and moisture but also serve to drain excess water away. Vermiculite increases water and nutrient retention and helps aerate the soil.  This creates a mix that is ideal for root development and plant growth.   

Q. Will there be enough nutrients in this potting mix ?

A. This mix contains alfalfa meal and works well for getting seeds started. If plants are going to be in the potting mix for an extended time, they will need additional nutrients. You could mix in an organic fertilizer or compost to add nutrients or could also use liquid fertilizers like seaweed extract. The appropriate ratios would be dependent on the type of plant and its specific needs. 

Questions about planting and growing (Tips):

Q. How do I protect my plants when it get so cold at night? 

A. One great option is to use frost cloth. We sometimes sell 1.5oz thickness 12ft wide for $2.50/ linear ft. So a 12ft x10ft piece would be $25 for example.

General Farm Questions:

Q. Do you offer tours?

A. We usually schedule tours a few times throughout the season for the community to come out and get the “low down”. Please sign up for our email updates by emailing us at farmforestdale@gmail.com. We have worked very hard to get the farm to where it is today and would love to share all of the systems that go into making Forestdale Farm successful. Things are very busy for us during the growing season so we charge for small group tours at $10 a person- 5 person minimum.

Plan tour now!