Memorial Day was a rainy one this year. Shelby and I were kinda lounging around the house when she suggested we head over to New Earth Farm in Pungo (a rural section of Virginia Beach, VA.)
We don't travel out there much but we've been following the farm for years now. They just opened up a nice, big shop carrying the stuff they grow and produce in addition to the other area farms products such as butchered meats, honey, baked goods, produce, etc... The market is a renovated old farmhouse that was on the property forever and it's water tight - great place to hang out in the rain.
Marion and Paul Schultz were working that day and put the word out they'd be open for the afternoon. When we walked in they were inside the shop behind the counter. They told us about this weird leafy vegetable they grew called Celtuce that looks kinda like a stalky lettuce but has bitter leaves. The stalk is what you want to eat and Paul described it as "buttery popcorn." They asked if we wanted to try it and of course we said yes. We'll try just about anything. They peeled some and chopped it up in bite-sized bits. I kinda got the butter thing they were talking about and a few other flavors that were hard to place. They said they'd give a couple to play around with. I'll post that later when it happens!
We chatted for a while, just chillin' out. Paul asked if I wanted to check out the greenhouse where they were trying a new growing system for some tomatoes. They were tying string from the roof of the enclosure that they would slowly lower as they thew grew taller. In the end you'll have a spiral effect on the stem that helps the plant. It's something I'd like to learn more about for sure.
We hung out on the back porch of the shop and watched the rain and I saw a lone hen hopping around on one leg. Paul said a few of their chickens were attacked by a raccoon while they slep in their coop. Apparently the raccoons will grab whatever they can through the cages and just eat it. This includes live chicken legs! Poor things. They had to put some down but one of the farmhands nursed this one back to health and now it's living it's best life and a one legged chicken. She's a farm pet now and her name is "Lt. Dan", also known as "Danny."
Once back inside the market Marion told Shelby to take home some of the flowers since the shop was going to be closed the next day and they wouldn't do well untended. We also got a dozen eggs from the farm. I can't wait to try them out. We also bought some Brentwood Farm lamb kebab meat from Suffolk, we'll grill it while Marleigh visits this week. You'll see it posts I'm sure.
All in all we had a great day and I'm glad Shelby mentioned heading over. It was nice to talk to Marion and Paul and get to know them better. We see them around a lot but it's usually quick conversations in passing. Please go out to the farm and check it out yourself, when you see everyone there say "Hi!"