As sponsors, we publicly identify with, exert appropriate influence on, and provide various levels of support to these ministries. In so doing, we fulfill our responsibility of stewardship for our heritage, mission, and resources.
Sr. Marian Patrice Leaf is a Franciscan from birth. Her parents were secular Franciscans. Marian is the third of six children—four girls and two boys. The close-knit family lived in Upper Darby, near Philadelphia. As a sociology student at Neumann University, Marian came to know the Sisters of St. Francis well.
Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farms are mutually beneficial partnerships between a local farm and a neighborhood that desires fresher, healthier produce.
Before the harvest season begins, each CSA member purchases a share. As a shareholder in the farm, a CSA member receives a weekly share of the highest quality produce.
Payment is required before the season begins to provide a stable financial base for the farm. This allows the farmer to purchase seeds, hire labor, and get the season started without having to take out high-interest loans.
Our practices are guided by the national organic standards and by our own goals for achieving a sustainable system. Because the CSA farmers and crew have personal interactions and relationships with the shareholders, we find it an unnecessary step to apply for or pay the expenses of federal organic certification. We invite all shareholders and farm visitors to spend a day with us, walk through our fields, and come see for yourself how we farm. Let’s keep it local!
Cover crops are planted to fix nitrogen, build soil organic matter, and prevent erosion. Seeds are organic when available, with the inclusion of heirloom and open pollinated varieties. We control pests primarily through using crop rotations, encouraging diversity, fostering natural predators, and using floating row covers over the crops. Weeds are kept in check by mechanical cultivation and hand weeding.
Our share season starts in early June and ends mid-November. The length of the season is dependent on weather and local frost dates. In December and January we are planning for the next season. From February through May, we seed, transplant, and nurture the crops we will harvest for you starting in June.
You choose either Tuesday or Friday, from 1 P.M.-6:30 P.M., and come to the farm each week to pick up your share. We harvest the bulk of the produce for you. However, members harvest the crops in the U-Pick garden themselves. We have a relatively large U-Pick garden. Some crops include berries, beans, peas, herbs, cut flowers, cherry tomatoes, and hot peppers. The U-Pick area allows members to experience food at its best—from farm to table. It is a great place to teach your children about different crops and it gives you an opportunity to spend time at the farm getting to know fellow members.
We suggest you have a friend/relative/neighbor pick up your share. There are no refunds and switching days is not an option. If you can’t find a substitute, please know that we do not allow food to go to waste. Any leftover produce is donated to local organizations that help those in need.