GIVEAWAY: CSM Share from Goldthread Herb Farm

Enter to Win a CSM Share from
Goldthread Herb Farm in Conway

Share a folk remedy you like to make in the summer months using fresh herbs & plants and be entered to win a large CSM Share from Goldthread Herb Farm in Conway, MA. Deadline to enter: Monday, July 2nd, 2012.

This summer Goldthread Herb Farm in Conway, MA is embarking on their fifth season of providing Community Supported Medicine (CSM) Shares to the community… and Hilltown Families has a large share (enough for a family of 3-4, valued at $250) to giveaway to one lucky family! Details on how you can enter to win are below and deadline to participate is Monday, July 2nd, 2012 by 7pm (EST).


Goldthread Farm’s fresh-from-the-field CSM shares contain herbs and remedies for a host of commonly encountered conditions such as colds, flus, sore throats, coughs, digestive issues, sleep improvement, skin conditions, children’s health, and more. Their CSM shares offer handcrafted medicines, tea blends, honeys, elixirs and flavorful culinary spices.  Their two seasonal pickups include a unique opportunity to meet their plants, sip freshly brewed herbal tea and participate in an in-depth herb walk and educational session at their farm in Conway, MA.  Alternatively, shares can be picked up at their storefront in Florence, MA. In addition to their large shares, they also offer and small share (perfect for 1-2 people).


Goldthread Herb Farm is a medicinal herb farm located in the Hilltowns in Conway, MA. The farm is situated on a south facing hilltop, surrounded by hundreds of acres of mixed conifers and hardwoods, teeming with wildlife, and blessed with abundant streams and brooks. Their goal is to provide a source for organically grown and sustainably wild harvested medicinal plants and plant preparations that are of the highest quality and crafted with the greatest care and attention to detail. In Florence, MA they have a full-service apothecary and clinic stocked with organic medicinal herbs and local products fresh from their farm. Visit for more info on their CSM and classes, or call 413-587-0620.


Your chance to win a Large CSM Share from Goldthread Herb Farm in Conway, MA for the 2012 season is as easy as 1-2-3(4)!  To enter to win simply:

  • CONSIDER SHARING THIS POST ON FACEBOOK by selecting the Facebook icon below;
  • FULL NAME (first/last);
  • LIVE (TOWN/STATE) (must include your town to be eligible);
  • ACCURATE EMAIL (we never share your email address);
  • From our favorite entries (so make them good!) we’ll randomly draw a winner and will share the results below.

IT’S THAT SIMPLE! — Deadline is Monday, July 2nd, 2012 by 7pm (EST).

Q&A: Share Your Love for Your Local CSA


(Photo credit: Sienna Wildfield)

Have you signed up for your local CSA yet? CSA’s (Community Supported Agriculture) are great ways to get fresh local fruits, vegetables and other farm products while supporting local farming. Tell us about your favorite CSA here in Western MA, and what you love about your local farm share.

  • Tinky Weisblat writes, “We go to Wilder Brook Farm in Charlemont. It feels like family—and you can pick your own food out so if you don’t really need four heads of lettuce that week you don’t take them!”
  • Jennifer Shiao Page writes, “We love Brookfield Farmin South Amherst. We love biking to pick up our share every week in the summer. We love seeing friends and neighbors there. We love the all-natural, no-sugar-added popsicles that they sell at the farm store. We love buying local milk and yogurt there too. We love pick-your-own strawberries, herbs, edamame, and more. We love visiting with the chickens and pigs. When my parents come visit, and we take them to Brookfield, they tell us that it feels like they are on vacation!”
  • Dan Finn writes, “If you are a member of UMass Five College Federal Credit Union they will give you a 0% loan for six months to help pay for a CSA. Pretty cool!”
  • Kathie Crivelli writes, “Riverland Farm in Sunderland, Mountain View Farm in Easthampton, Next Barn Over in Hadley, Simple Giftsin North Amherst, Brookfield Farm in South Amherst, on and on and on it goes… Sign up!”
  • Melissa Adams writes, “We’re a member at Crabapple Farm (Chesterfield) for a veggie/produce share & will be getting a cheese share there from Cricket Creek Farm in the Berkshires (Williamstown)!”
  • Kara Kitchen writes,Holiday Brook Farm in Dalton!”

GIVEAWAY: CSA Farm Share from Crimson & Clover Farm

Enter to Win a Farm Share from
Crimson & Clover Farm this Summer!

Enter to win a Small Farm Share from Crimson & Clover Farm in Florence, MA for the 2012 season by sharing a family recipe you're looking forward to preparing this spring with fresh local produce, embellished with the story behind this favorite dish! Deadline: April 16th.

Locally grown food is a great community connector! This past winter families could enjoy Winter Farmers’ Market all throughout Western MA while connecting with friends and neighbors during these often festive weekly markets.  And during the growing and harvest season Farmers’ Markets happen nearly every day of the week and have quickly become places the community not only shops for fresh produce and local products, but a place they can enjoy a summer morning or evening together listening to music, enjoying coffee or dinner, and chatting with local farmers.

But Farmers’ Markets aren’t the only way the community can connect with their neighbors while supporting local farmers… Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is another fabulous way families can support and participate in our local food culture.  By purchasing a CSA share, shareholders pledge their support of a local farm and receive weekly shares of fruits, vegetables, herbs, cut flowers, honey, eggs, dairy and meat products.  For a list of CSA’s in the Pioneer Valley, check out CISA’s list of local farms.


Hilltown Families is currently working on a project titled, Seasons at Our Table, inviting our readers to share recipes and stories inspired by our local food culture. Hilltown Families sponsor, Crimson & Clover Farm, a community based farm on the Northampton Community Farm land, is partnering with us in this project by offering an incentive to our readers to share their favorite stories and best family recipes. Share a family recipe you’re looking forward to preparing this spring with fresh local produce, embellished with the story behind this favorite dish, and be entered to win a Small CSA Share from Crimson & Clover Farm, a $375 value!  Deadline to enter to win: April 16th by 7pm (EST). Details on how to enter to win are below.


Crimson & Clover Farm

Crimson & Clover Farm is a community based farm located on the beautiful Northampton Community Farm in Florence, Massachusetts.  They grow vegetables, fruits and flowers for a Community Supported Agriculture Program and for farmers’ markets.  Welcoming and encouraging community involvement with the farm, they offer weekly volunteer workdays, farm celebrations and educational opportunities.

They are offering our readers a Small Farm Share ($375 value) which will feed up to two people.  Their vegetable options change through the season, starting with more leafy greens in the early season and more roots and summer type vegetables as the season moves along. The Small Farm Share is a great option for smaller families, couples, individuals, or folks trying out a CSA share for the first time. In addition to a Small Farm Share the winning shareholders will have access to their Pick-Your-Own garden where families can pick many other crops like strawberries, cherry tomatoes, flowers and much more. Find out more about their farm shares at


Your chance to win a Small Farm Share from Crimson & Clover Farm in Florence, MA for the 2012 season will be super fun for all foodies and families who love to cook & eat together!  To enter to win simply:

  • CONSIDER SHARING THIS POST ON FACEBOOK by selecting the Facebook icon below;
  • FULL NAME (first/last);
  • LIVE (TOWN/STATE) (must include your town to be eligible);
  • ACCURATE EMAIL (we never share your email address);
  • From our favorite entries (so make them good!) we’ll randomly draw a winner and will share the results below.

IT’S THAT SIMPLE! — Deadline is Monday, April 16th, 2012 by 7pm (EST).

Green Tip: Community Supported Agriculture

Green Tip: September 2011

Click on the photo to read "CSA Farms Are Like Family," by Hilltown Families Contributing Writer, Dana Pilson.(Photo credit: Sienna Wildfield)

Did You Know?

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is a new and growing model of farming that allows people to directly support local farmers and receive a diverse variety of local food crops from their farmer every week during the growing season. Most CSA farms provide vegetables, fruits, and herbs to their members, and some CSA farms produce meat and dairy products.

Green Tip:

’Tis the season to…purchase your share from a Community Supported Agriculture farm for next summer! CSA farms then know how many members they are growing for and spend the winter planning next season’s crops. In addition, many CSAs offer winter shares for sale in the fall so that you can eat local throughout the winter, too. For a list of CSA farms in our region, visit

Read the rest of this entry »

Northampton Community Farm

Vision for a Community Farm in the Pioneer Valley

Grow Food Northampton envisions a community farm to include CSA’s, microdairy, farming microenterprises, farm store, community garden plots, apprentice trainings, workshops, community celebrations, school programs and camps right in Northampton, MA. You can help to make this happen!

Grow Food Northampton plans to purchase 117 acres of prime farmland in Florence (walking distance from town center, near Meadow and Spring Sts.). Read more here.

They will be having their LAUNCH EVENT on SATURDAY, OCTOBER 2nd at the Elk’s Lodge in Florence, MA from 4-8pm. There will be a historic walking tour at 4pm at the Historic Ross Homestead at 123 Meadow St. in Florence. At the same time there will be kids activities, family music, and time with the farmers at the Elk’s Lodge. At 5pm dinner will be served and there will be speakers and more live music and dancing to follow.

Learn more, get inspired, and have a great time building community together! This is a free event with encouragement to donate what you can to help Grow Food Northampton meet its fundraising goals.

CSA Farms Are Like Family

Purple Carrots

Daisy and a friend pose with their 'quarries.' The joy on their faces is priceless. (Photo credit: Dana Pilson)

Hooray, it’s finally summer! Which means it’s time to head back to our local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) for spinach, garlic scapes, turnips, pea pods, herbs, strawberries, and all sorts of wonderful lettuces. As the summer progresses, we’ll get tomatoes, carrots, peppers, beans, edamame if we’re lucky, and all sorts of other wonderful veggies as well as flowers and more herbs. The year winds down in the fall with squashes and pumpkins, potatoes, beets and other harvest-time goodies. Through the winter we visit the root cellar for carrots, beets and lots of root vegetables. Solstice rituals, harvest festivals, and other events pepper the year and bring members together to celebrate the farm in a festive environment.

We’ve been going to “the farm,” as it is affectionately called, since my daughter Daisy was tiny.  We figured that even if she didn’t eat much of the produce, she would at least get the experience of the place.  I used to carry her in my front-pack as I bagged up the week’s goods, or headed into the fields to gather herbs and pick-your-own crops like tomatoes, raspberries, and green beans.  As she got older, she preferred to play on the toy tractor, dig in the sandbox with friends, watch the big kids catch frogs at the pond, or dip her toes into the cool stream that meanders through the cow pasture.

The children’s garden, started last year, is a new favorite spot. Located conveniently near the barn where the week’s produce is distributed, the kids disappear in there and read in the teepee covered with scarlet runner beans and gourd plants, admire the flowers, or pluck and eat cherry tomatoes.  The biggest draw of all is pulling and munching on purple carrots.  There’s nothing as kid friendly as a purple carrot, fresh from the ground.  Wash it off, use the greens as a handle, and voila, a perfect fresh-from-the-garden snack.

Thanks to the farm, we’ve tasted new foods and tried new recipes, such as oven-roasted crispy kale, stuffed peppers, and sauteed turnips and escarole.  Some have gone over like a ton of bricks: Daisy detested the kale, and it smelled up the whole house something awful.  Others are household favorites: barbecued corn, zucchini pasta, peas straight from the pod.  Daisy has tried new veggies with various results: she’ll only eat a cherry tomato fresh off the vine.  The ones we bring home are of no interest and might as well be a different food altogether.  Strawberries, warmed by the sun and eaten right in the field are like “sweet sugar,” according to Daisy.  Raspberries are another favorite, and we often consume our share before even leaving the confines of the bushes.  A piece of lettuce, however, has yet to pass Daisy’s lips, and she continues to turn up her nose at spinach, no matter how kid-friendly I try to make it.

Thanks to the farm, we now eat with the seasons.  When I was a kid, we ate strawberries year-round.  I never knew that they grew in the spring.  The food I ate came from the A&P.  That’s where all food came from.  It was grown somewhere else… where, I had no idea.  The only thing I ever attempted to grow myself was a crystal in a jar of sugar water.  Read the rest of this entry »

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