December crops, bounty of the season.

It may surprise some people to learn that we still have so much growing here at Morning Glory.  Our maritime climate offers a long fall growing season that allows some crops to thrive; all the cole crops, the broccoli cabbage and kales’; all the brassica greens, mustards aruglua etc; and the spinach loves the cool weather; lettuces can withstand several moderate frosts.  We also have 5 greenhouses filled with lettuces, greens, spinach, boc choi, cucumbers and zucchini.

december organic broccoli

We are still picking:


Boc Choi

Bonsai-Boc Choi




Red Russian Kale


Cape White Turnips

Baby Hakurei turnips (radish sized)

7 Varieties of head lettuce

Spinach, great late season crop this year!


Baby salad greens

Baby mustards

Mesculn salad mix


White potatoes

Yukon Potatoes


Heaps of Butternut and Acorn squashes

Island Cauliflower

Island Carrots

Dozens of fresh herbs picked daily

Kohlrabi ripe for xmass

Greenhouse grown zucchini and pickling cukes

osaka, suehlihung, red mustards

Pumpkin Festival!!! Sat Oct 17th

Pumpkin Festival!!!

Sat OCT 17th 11am-4pm

Island grown lunch!


Island grass fed burgers.
Pumpkin soup and Portuguese kale soup
Pumpkin Dounuts fresh made all day on lawn
Pumpkin Pie, and the wonderful pumpkin squares
Last of the fresh island corn steamed fresh for you

Free games for children


Hay Rides
Hay maze
Pumpkin Toss
Pumpkin Painting and Carving
Face Painting
Burlap Sack Race
Vegetable stamp printing

Watch the Trebuchet throw a pumpkin 400+feet!!!
Go for a pony ride through the field (sm fee)
Look at and sit on our fleet of tractors

Top 10 from farmhand Emily

planting pumpkins in west tisburyEmily direct seeding pumpkins in a west tisbury field.

Hi! My name is Emily Carol and this is my second year working as a field hand at morning glory farm. Working in the fields means that I get to go to work everyday and enjoy the simple pleasure of working hard outside with wonderful people and living plants.  Here are my top 10 things that make me happy at Morning Glory Farm.
1) Enjoying a sungold tomato- Tomato plants need a lot of love to grow up into strong plants.  This summer I was involved with setting up the high tunnels (similar to a green house), pruning, and trellising the many tomato plants.  This is hard work and tomato sap is very hard to get off, but after tasting the first ripe tomato, it is all worth it.
2)Wheel hoeing- Many of the plants that are grown on the farm are planted in beds.  There are three rows per bed and the dirt between these rows is a breeding ground for unwanted weeds.  When the plants are too big for a tractor to come through, a wheel hoe is used. I really enjoy using it because I can put in my I-pod and rock out up and down the rows pushing the hoe back and forth.  Its fun, productive, and it gives you a little workout.
3)Transplanting- Some of our plants (tomatoes, broccoli, flowers…) are seeded in the greenhouse and once they begin to mature they are planted into the ground.  This is almost everyone’s favorite job because an extension is put onto a tractor that allows two people to sit on the back.  The tractor makes holes in the ground and the people on the back plant the plants as they move down the rows.
4)The smell of a carrot when it is pulled out of the ground- We grow beautiful carrots that are sweeter than any carrot I have ever tasted.  I had never seen any vegetable be pulled out of the ground before I came to morning glory, and to this day, I am still amazed each time I pull up on a green stock and vibrant orange carrot comes out.
5)Seeing the flower bunches be brought in- This always puts a smile on my face.  We have very talented flower bunchers that create the most beautiful arrangements.  A few times I have been lucky enough to help carry them in from the field and I loved sharing in the amazement and joy of the customers.
6)Talking with customers- It’s always nice to know that your hard work is appreciated.  One day after a long morning in the cucumber field I walked into the stand and I overheard someone say, “Wow look at these cucumbers”.  Another time I was walking through the parking lot and a woman came up to me and asked, “Honey, how did you get so dirty?”  She just made me smile.
7)A morning in the pea or bean field- The whole field crew will agree that there is something special about picking in this field.  It always inspires good thoughts and conversation.
8)Eating at a nice restaurant and seeing Morning Glory Farm produce on the menu- The farm whole sells produce to businesses and restaurants on the island.  When you are picking and boxing up vegetables for wholesale it’s a cool feeling to know that it is hours away from being prepared and served by talented chefs.  It also pretty cool to order the meal and to then tell the waiter that you work at Morning Glory.
9)An afternoon of haying- Haying is hard work, but it is also a lot of fun.  It involves gathering bails of hay from a field and loading trucks up into heaping towers and then organizing the bales into a barn.  You get a huge sense of accomplishment seeing the truck loaded up and then driving it.
10)My Morning Glory Farmily- The people who work at this farm are a special group of people.  I can’t believe how lucky I am to have had to opportunity to work with such talented and dedicated people.  It always amazes me how well such a divers group of people mesh and work together.  The people of Morning Glory make the farm such a special place in my heart.

Go to the Fair

morning glory farm at the martha's vineyard fair

Ah the fair, I love the fair.  Workmen/women, visitors and residents across the island take time to visit and enjoy the fair.  Listen to the Blue Hills Strolling Brass Quintet, catch the new favorite event the antique lawn tractor pull, hear the booming sounds of pop music blasting over worn amusement speakers all across west tisbury, watch the shucking contest, check your entries and look for your friends names in the hall, I love the Ox pull event (Thursday at 11:30), Saturday night listen to some of our favorite island musicians, stroll through the fiber tent and talk and listen to people carrying on the traditions of spinning,  Woodsmans contest noon on Saturday, Visit the barn say hi to animals (will Fred have piglets there this year?) and stop and talk to all those old friends you only seem to see at the fair, enjoy it!

The Fair design this year is done by my cousin Morgan Taylor.  She is a graphic designer that has come home to the Vineyard after many years away, and now works with the Vineyard Gazette.  The cover of the Fair booklet, the poster and the shirts have a team of oxen hitched and pulling a dump wagon, standing in front of the Ag Hall.  She crafted this image after a photo of my great uncle Lenoard’s team and wagon.  He was a avid supporter of the fair and the Agricultural Society.  He showed animals and entered contests for decades.  He was a West Tisbury kid and adult, a dairyman for the then Vineyard Downs Dairy (among others) and currently known as Campbell and Douglas and even sooner to have a new name.  He was often seen tinkering with his antique cars and tractors at the antique power show, or at the family farmstead in Crow Hollow off  New Lane.

Our corn will be available this year at the fair!  Todd Debbencourt will be selling fresh Morning Glory Farm corn in his food booth this year.  Come by and have the taste of the season.  We will be picking for Todd every morning or even mid day to ensure you a fresh ear at the fair.  After a slow start our sweet corn in coming in strong now and will be available every day.

Come on down to the fair.   At the Fairgrounds in West Tisbury August 20, 21,22,&23 but you knew that already after all its the fair!

http://mvas.vineyard.net/    for the Martha’s Vineyard Agricultual Society’s web page.

Please I invite you to post comments on your favorite fair event, to suggest an event or one you have seen at another fair.  sj

Katama hay day

hay in katama

Hillary, Michael, Kelsey and a high quality alfalfa, clover and fescue mix in Katama

Jamm’in and pickl’n kitchen

jesse iskra with strawberry jam

Hi There,

If your reading this, it is probably because you enjoy the jams and jellies that grace our wonderful farm stand.  I do too, I’m Jesse Iskra, often seen through the bakery window, and I’m the guy that makes many of these tasty products.  A farm fresh corn muffin, split, toasted,  and smothered with fresh raspberry jam – ah the satisfaction (my personal favorite)!  Though the times, they do change.  People are much more concerned with what they eat these days, rightly so, we are what we eat.  For the past year Simon and I have been researching a more health conscious product.  Today, you get to taste the literal fruit of my labors.

Have you ever wondered why jam and jelly is so sweet?  If you look at a jar of jam, you will note that the fruit seems to float in a pretty clear jelly.  This is achieved through liquefying sugar into the fruit juice.  Jelly is the same, minus the fruit pulp.  How much sugar?  A fair bit!  Before, the fruit to sugar ratio leaned in favor of the sugar.  Now I am using Pomona’s Pectin (not Certo).  Rather than a pectin that relies on sugar to jell, Pomona’s uses the fruits calcium to gel.  This swings the ratio back towards the part of the jam or jelly you want to taste – The FRUIT!

Now the jar you hold today is sweetened a little, but only for the sweet taste you desire on a morning muffin or peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  The taste of the fruit will speak for itself.  In the future I will be testing other natural sweeteners: maple syrup, honey and agave nectar, and feel free to make requests for others – your critiques and suggestions are valued and heard.  Please comment to a baker in the store or here on the blog.

I hope you enjoy eating these delectable and wholesome products as much as I do making them for you – are valued customer.


Garlic harvest in edgartown

pround farmers with thier harvest of garlic

Graham, Justin, Anna, Eric, and Page proudly showing off the garlic harvest.

This years garlic harvest was fantastic!  We harvested thousands of garlic bulbs.  The little field at the corner of Cleavelandtown and Katama road was filled with garlic now in the barn curing.  We quickly turned the garlic soil over to grow an Labor day crop of lettuce.  And the Garlic has now cured and is for sale at the store as well as at the farmer’s markets West Tisbury (Wed&Sat) Vineyard Haven (Tuesday).  We are selling first quality German White heads in the stand as well as garlic braids, a decorative way to have and display your garlic, as well as having a second quality cheeper ‘roasting’ Garlic and we will be selling the best of the crop carefully stored till November for planting stock for your garden and ours.

Mo – Glo Bakery

Morning glory bakery crew 2009

Hi folks,

My name is Sarah and I’m the newest addition to the Morning Glory bakery. Since June I’ve been working with the bakery team to make the freshest muffins, breads, cookies, bars, quiche, jam, and pies for you and your family to enjoy seven days a week. I came to the farm from Boston, where I’ve worked for the past few years at Harvard University. I escaped my editorial job at the Ivory Tower to do something that’s closer to my heart–and stomach. A love of baking passed down to me from my grandmother and a love of small farms cultivated during my childhood in rural New Hampshire motivated me to ditch my office digs and put on my baking shoes. And I’m sure glad I did. Although I’ve only been here a month, I already feel like part of the Morning Glory farm family (or farmily, as I like to call it).

Enough about me, let’s talk about what we’re up to in the bakery…

The zucchini is rolling in (and rolling in and rolling in) thanks to our dedicated field crew, and we’re turning the green goddesses into moist and delicious zucchini bread and muffins. Every day we make close to 100 loaves of zucchini bread, which fly off the shelf! Make sure to stop in and enjoy your share of the bounty.

Strawberry season is nearing an end, but Jesse the jam master has packaged the sweetness for you to savor for months to come. Farm fresh strawberry jam is just one of the many flavors of jam now available in the stand. Stock up so you can enjoy the sweet taste of summer on a warm piece of toast in January, or as soon as you get home!

Many people ask me what a typical day looks like in the bakery, so I thought I’d share a quick overview for all of you who are curious. The day starts early, or late, depending on how you look at it. Long before dawn the kitchen is buzzing with our bread bakers, Dwight and Adnan, hard at work. As the roosters begin to wake, so does Heather our muffin baker to make sure the muffins are out of the oven and ready for you to enjoy with your morning cup of coffee when the farm stand opens at 9:00. By 7:30 the rest of the bakers, led by Jody the bakery manager, have arrived to begin making our famous monkey bars, jam bars, cobblers, coffeecakes, and cookies (the big soft gingersnaps are my favorite).

As soon as those are in the oven, we move on to quiche. Veggie, mushroom scallion, ham, farm sausage with peppers and onion, and tomato basil are just some of the kinds we make. After quiche we begin the pie production, and a production it is. Currently we’re making apple, blueberry, blueberry/strawberry, blueberry/peach, strawberry/peach, and peach. All of the pie dough is made from scratch and the fruit filling is mixed fresh every day. Pies hit the stand at 2:00pm, and there is often a line of people waiting to take one home. As soon as our production is finished we prep ingredients and make sure the kitchen is spic and span for another day of baking at the farm.

Phew! Just talking about all we do makes me tuckered out. I think I’d better go rest up and save my energy for making you a fresh pie. If you ever have any questions or just want to see us in action, you can find me and the bakery crew in the back of the farm stand, just past the freshest salad bar on the Island. I hope you’ll pop in and say hello!

Laura and yankoFresh farm quiche

Summer work at morning glory farm

The Farmily Photo

Here we are!  Almost all the staff from the Farmstand, Bakery, Kitchen, Herb Garden, Greenhouses, and Field Crew.

Sunny days in the hay field

Jim, Hillary, Serena, Stella taking a break before unloading the next truckload.

This is west tisbury cut grass hay being loaded into our approx 2000 bale barn in chilmark.  Most of our cattle reside in chilmark (and the dozen piglets seen at left) while also making use of one barn in west tisbury and two in edgartown to store a full winters worth of hay.  Not pictured are Daniel Athearn, Graham, Page, Jessie and the two other trucks, we put up 617 bales last night, with so many more to come.

Jim at work in west tisbury

Jim (Dad to me) at work on a hot and sunny July afternoon.  He is making his seventh and final 4mph trip around and around this 5 + acre field, now using our john deere baler and the international harvester hydro 84 tractor (hydrostatic drive).

meanwhile back at the ranch

Meanwhile back at the home farm…  Daniel and Julie transplant late tomatoes into the “house field’ (behind the little pond and by the peach orchard).  And no it’s not too late, we even have one more planting to go!  On the vineyard we are blessed with extremely long falls and late frosts. Daniel Athearn is in the tractor seat and is soon to join the hay effort in west tisbury.


Morning Glory Farm in the rain

The talk of the town seems to be the cloudy weather.  Many people have asked me over the last few weeks “so is it ruining all your crops?” or similar questions.  Answer: Yes and no, Many plants are stressed out, showing disease, lacking nutrients and behind; However many plants are thriving and most of even the affected crops are poised to go on a tear of vegetative growth (tomatoes, peppers, melons, corn).   The lettuce has been wonderful and the potatoes are in great shape, and what a great asparagus year, wow!

We are now picking: Strawberries, shell peas, sugar snap peas, hot house tomatoes, baby beets, baby carrots,lettuce (9 varieties), zucchini, summer squash, kale, chard, green onions, scallions, flowers, red new potatoes, Yukon gold new potatoes, baby arugula, garlic scapes, boc choi, basil, parsley, tatsoi, mustards, collards, and so many herbs.

And Whats to come: Cucumbers, Snow peas, Heirloom summer squash, Blueberries, Walla walla sweet onions, Broccoli, Cabbage, Garlic, French Fingerling Potatoes, Green Beans, Corn (best guess is July 18th right now, we need some sun) and lets not forget the delicious Massachusetts peaches from Carlson Orchards (very soon)

What are the farmer’s up to?: Harvest has taken over as the largest part of our field workers day, though planting, weeding and plant care continue.  Stella has been having regular 100lb days in the hot house tomatoes, and the cherry tomatoes she picks are peaking.  Our tomato crew has trellised the first round of the first and second generations of field tomatoes and third generation should go in this week.  Justin and Anna have split up the farmer’s market shifts to help Ethan staff the market booths at both the Wed/Sat market in West Tisbury and the Tuesday Market at Packer’s Wharf in Vineyard haven.  Hillary repaired a broken gate in the cow yard that the cows knocked down.  Justin moved another batch of chickens out into the movable pastured poultry pens, generation 1 is getting near slaughter.  Dan and Simon have been steadily breaking tractors and having to repair them, its a ongoing cycle, machine shop to field and back.  Jim has been cultivating corn the last couple of dry days.

We were able to sneak in two quick harvests of hay over the last long period of foul weather, they made it in the barn in passable shape.  Strawberries are holding out and seem to be in good shape despite the rain and have had good harvests 6 days a week, (ending say July 12th) Alex has been managing a harvest that grows every day and what seems like an endless amount of orders from restaurants and markets that Cheryl has procured and will deliver twice weekly (today 480 heads of lettuce), you should see Andrew smile when he gets a large lettuce order, he and Hillary went out and harvested it all and were back in the barn washing by 9am.  Andrew and Cheryl have begun to pack romaine hearts for sales at Cronigs market and at our store, we will learn if there is really a market for it.

Amy and Micheal are back and have made a home out of the old blueberry house, what a shot in the arm to the field crew they are; two of our hardest and most experienced field hands back for another year of dirty hands and sore backs.  The beans carefully planted 5 successive crops inside the new deer fence in Norton field are being (have been) eaten by RABBITS!! you just can win! The kitchens have been making strawberry jam daily and are a little tired of it they report.  We have been making a low sugar (near all fruit) Jam that tastes like June itself. Judy and Chloe catered an Island Grown event for IGI this week with all our own produce and meats.

Meg and Dan have had 6 calves from the herd of cattle in Chilmark and expect 6 more.  Simon found a patch of early wild ground blueberries ripe out by the new broccoli field this week, a smile and blue teeth.  The Greens continue to grow wonderfully, a new crop of baby Arugula is ripe thanks to the care of Daniel T.  Last week Emily wheel hoe’d the entire Garlic field (3/4 of an Acre) That’s a big job but good for a woman that row’s crew.  The farm stand staff have been so happy to start replacing some of the off-island produce from early season to selling our own.  They have created a new register area to add two more lines in the little greenhouse off the side of the store.  They report fantasitic sales of our new book, and alot of intrest in the garlic scapes.  The stand staff are poised but nervus to tackle another holiday weekend ahead.

Having trouble finding time to Blog with all my spring work, I will be asking a few of our crew to blog about thier jobs/experiences/thoughts over the next few weeks.  Thanks for stopping by, simon.