CSA Day Promotion

We’ve already announced that February 24th is CSA Day, and a great time to join a CSA – preferably ours!  Now we’ve added a special bonus – sign up from now to CSA Day (i.e. midnight on Feb. 24th) and get more shares for free!  Full share sign-ups will get their choice of 2 additional weeks of delivery, or 2 extra share bags during the season if they want to double up. Or choose one of each.  Half-share sign-ups will get their choice of 1 extra week of delivery, or an extra half-share bag during the season. Take advantage of this special offer and sign up now on the Join Our CSA page (see link in menu, above).

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February 24th is CSA Day!

Small Farm Central has designated February 24th as this year’s official CSA Day!  It’s a great time to join our CSA.  Did you know most CSA sign-ups occur at the end of February? When you join a CSA, you are eating fresh, local, usually organic, and giving all of your food dollars direct to the farmer.  And CSA farmers really appreciate those early sign-ups to pay for the seeds, supplies and labor that goes into planting the crops months before the first CSA deliveries, which typically begin mid-May to early June.  Check out our delivery locations page, support your local farmer and  if you can’t join ours, find one close to you at www.csaday.info or www.localharvest.org.

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January 2017. We’ve always grown according to organic principles but this year we decided to make it official.  CSA manager Matt Belmont has completed and sent in the application to Pennsylvania Certified Organic. Since we have never used chemicals, we hope to skip the several years of “transitional” status required of farms who have been using synthetic herbicides and pesticides. Once approved, this means all of our CSA produce will be “certified organic. Thanks to two generous donors who helped with the hefty application fee.  We’ll keep you posted!

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The Farm of Peace CSA is entering its third growing season and there are now thousands of tiny seeds lined up on shelves in our newly built solar seed shed. I spent the past week planting seeds in the warmth of the solar seed-growing shed, and if it is as nurturing to the seeds as it has been for me, we should have some healthy plants!

Every time I plant a seed, it leaves me in awe, which seems to deepen with each season. It is a miraculous and mysterious unfolding, which presents such clarity of truth about the caring of our Creator. He is so clearly the Creator, al-Khaliq, the King, al-Malik, as I see a vibrant green leaf unfold from a tiny dry seed; and the generous, al-Karim, as I witness this tiny seed unfold into a large plant, sometimes five feet tall, bearing fruit for many. He is an-Nur, as He sends the light to draw forth this process; al-Batin, as this life that will draw forth is hidden within its seed, awaiting the call; and al-Zahir, as it unveils itself and surrenders to the call to open. I will continue to ponder this and sing His qualities as I plant, and invite you all to come visit the seed shed next time you are at the farm and share your blessings for this new addition.

Jesse Amin is adding an 80-foot-long low tunnel in the field. This is where we intend to start early beets, carrots, spinach and lettuces for our early spring deliveries. All the new growth is exciting, and it’s just the beginning — we have many more seeds to sow!

Our CSA delivery season will begin on May 26, with space for 50 members. We are inviting 10 new members to join us in 2012, so please click CSA tab at the top of the page or contact Halima Willett at 717-404-0326 to sign up to be a CSA member this year, or if you would like more information about our program.

— Halima Jen Willett

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The watermelons are ripening on the vines — they look so massive, juicy and delicious that it is hard to be patient enough to pick them.  And to be quite honest —  I’m not!  Despite my husband’s wise advice that they hadn’t done their term according to the seed packet, and that the vine hadn’t shown any signs of being ready to release and let go, I convinced him to pick one anyway.

Surprise!  It was white inside.  That was almost two weeks ago, so now I am convinced they really are just about ready and this time he agrees!   We’ll see in a couple of days if the vines are ready to let go.

This is a gift that I so enjoy in the garden:  learning to watch the subtle signs and feel how the plants communicate.  Many fruits will “let go” and drop into my hand as soon as they have reached fruition; a few days early, I’ll have to tug.

Such a blessing to see how life shows us this all the time — when the timing is right, things fall into place, just like the tomato drops into my hand when it is ready.

When we are pushing and tugging to make something open or happen in our life, maybe it’s a sign that it’s time to step back and be patient and let it come into fruition.  White watermelon isn’t nearly as sweet and tasty as a juicy pink one!

Halima Jen

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Where does our food come from?

Our friend, sister Mary El Khatib brought about a dozen youngsters and their parents from the Nur Center in Northern Virginia to discover how carrots and other vegetables grow and to explore other delights of nature at the Farm of Peace. In an overnight Nature Camp organized by staffer Maryam Hand, the kids and their parents enjoyed time in the country and had hands-on experience of farm activities.


In the CSA garden, Jesse Amin showed the kids how to pull onions and carrots, and the kids had a blast unearthing their food!



With Maryam, they visited the orchard, seeing apples and peaches growing on the small trees. Maryam gave the children some of the apples as treats for the donkeys.

Mu’min Shay helped the kids make friends with the still-growing pastured poultry chicks; this is where the nutritious, wholesome meat on our table comes from.


Collecting eggs for breakfast was quite an adventure. Visiting the chicken coop, the children had a close-up encounter with the rooster and hens, and explored the nest boxes for fresh eggs.  In the evening, there was a campfire and of course, toasted marshmallows!

After a full morning of farm adventure — and a yummy pancake breakfast — the children gathered with Dr.  Jeanette Hablallah, who taught them about nature, plants, animals and bugs — and the beauty and awe of the creation they’d experienced on the farm. The children completed their Nature Camp with drawings of their experiences.  We hope all  the children and their parents will come back again to visit the farm!


"I love marshmallows" -- Adam


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