Thursday, September 4, 2014


Though I don't often write about it, I have been out gleaning this summer. Today I had to share because it was the most beautiful farm. We were at Hutchins Farm. We had a huge crew with us to glean beets, radishes, and turnips. The assistant farm manager gave us a little spiel about the farm. It was started in 1973, though the land had been farmed previously by the same family. When it was started it was started as an organic farm and remains that way today.

I get to intimately see a lot of farms in the area when I glean. This one is more sweeping and beautiful than most. Many are little tiny tracts of land patch worked together to make the farm. I wish I had taken more photos, but I didn't bring my camera. I took the photos with my phone and I wasn't willing to bring it out once my hands got muddy.

Often when we glean we can take a handful of the produce back. Which is good since now you know what the radishes were like. My first photo of them was without my hand and you couldn't grasp the size from the photo. But with my hand in there you can see they are huge. We were wondering if they were any good this big as in my garden they get punky and gross past a certain size. These were crunchy and sweet with a little spicy kick at the end. Matt, the gleaning coordinator, took out his knife and cut one up so we could try it in the field. Yummy. Now if I could just figure out how they do it.


  1. Those radishes are the size of turnips!

  2. What a beautiful farm! And huge radishes. Wow.

  3. Hi Daphne,
    You should plant Comfrey. Comfrey is a common name for plants in the genus Symphytum. Comfrey species are important herbs in organic gardening. It is used as a fertilizer and as an herbal medicine. You can chop off the leaves and just place them in the garden. Also you can make a tea or smoothie to add to all your plants.
    Louise, Stafford VA zone 7
    To plant a garden is to believe in the future

  4. What a lovely place to glean. Those are massive radishes!

  5. I will have to admit, I googled "gleaning". I thought I knew what it meant but I wanted to make sure. I love that word, it's so "old world" sounding.

    Beautiful farm and as everyone has said those radishes are HUGE!

    1. Gleaning is old world. It is from the bible. Once farmers were done harvesting they were supposed to let the poor in to pick over what was left. But in my case when the farmers have crops they don't need they call us and we pick it for them and give it to the food pantries.

  6. That IS a gorgeous farm. And those radishes are indeed massive - what a wonderful surprise that they would taste as good as they look!

  7. Beautiful! I would love to go gleaning one of these days. It's an old world tradition that needs to be preserved and is threatened in countries like France because of modern day farming equipment, which are super efficient at stripping everything from the land. Unfortunately, most of the excess and imperfect produce is tossed.

  8. I also had to google "gleaning". What a lovely idea which benefits everyone involved!

  9. How fun a day like this would be. I have never heard of it around here. A nice way to meet like minded people too. Nancy

  10. Brilliant, I'd never heard of gleaning before either. Fantastic idea, I don't think there's anything similar over here.
    And yes those radishes are amazing! I only grow them early inthe year to mark the rows of parsnips. Any sowings after that tend to bolt as we have v dry soil.