Holiday Market

On Saturday December 4th, from 2 pm until 7, Hillsboro Farmers Markets is holding a Holiday Market on Main St. between 1st and 2nd. There will be a parade with carolers and Santa starting at 2 pm and don't miss the tree lighting at 5.45pm.

Be sure to visit the Nuts About Berries stall and check out the new knitted hats and felted fish. Now is the time to stock up on fleece and yarn for those winter knitting and felting projects. And of course we will have freshly cracked walnuts as well as winter squash.

Fresh Thanksgiving Turkeys

Customer feedback: "That was the best turkey we have ever had! It was ready in 3.5 hours - fast for such a large bird! Please let us know if you are going to do another batch of turkeys next year." - Sarah

We are selling pasture raised fresh turkeys for Thanksgiving. The turkeys are the white broad breasted turkeys raised in a mobile pen that we move twice a day to fresh grass, they eat a diet of premium poultry feed, supplemented with the salad bar, a brassica forage crop that I grew and our walnuts. Absolutely no medication was given to the turkeys even when they were hatchlings.

The turkeys will be processed 2 days before Thanksgiving by a home school family in Willamina (Mineral Springs Poultry) that we have been using for about 6 years now. We will deliver the turkeys fresh to your door or a convenient pick up point on Tuesday afternoon (23rd November). Pricing is $4.25 per pound plus a deposit of $6 which is the processing fee. We expect sizes will vary from 15# for the small females to 30# for the biggest tom. Quantities are very limited so if you are interested please email us at

We have several mobile pens (also called chicken tractors), presently we are using one for layer chickens and one for meat chickens during the summer, currently housing the turkeys. The pens are a great way to provide access to outdoors, bugs and salad bar. They also eliminate cleaning the chicken coop (no ones favorite job) and reduces predation. The pen structure is built from recycled 2x6 ripped in half and screwed together (nails will pull out). The roof material is recycled metal roofing from a pole barn that I deconstructed (after a 3' snow storm brought it down).

Sherwood Saturday Market

After the season finished at Sherwood Saturday Market, we have fielded a number of comments and questions about the market from customers. A typical comment is that the customers appreciate going to market on Saturday and wished it went on for longer and was it possible to extend the market season through October and perhaps even adding a holiday market. Also there is impression that the market is run by the city of Sherwood, however this is not the case. The market is run by a non-profit company called "Sherwood Saturday Market" (Tonie of Tollen Farms is the president).

You may contact the market directly through email: Jim, the market manager may be reached at 971-238-1178. For further information goto visit the market's blog at


End of summer vegetables:

Beans - Green, Purple and Yellow Wax
Beets - Chiogga, Golden and Red
Broccoli - heads and sprouting
Corn - soon (est. 9/18)
Cucumber - Lemon
Cucumber - Armenian (actually this is a variety of melon).
Eggplant - Japanese and regular types
Lettuce - Bibb, Buttercrunch, Rouge D'Hiver, Simpson and Prizehead (est. 9/11-9/18)
Marrow - English variety of squash that is baked.
Summer squash - Scalloped (patty pan), green and golden, Yellow straight neck and crookneck, Magda
Onions - cooking: Cippolini, Red Marble, Red Zepplin, Copra.
Peppers - Biscayne, Gypsy
Tomatoes - Cherry (Orange, Yellow), Grape (Red) and slicing
Zucchini - Green and stripped (Cocozelle)

With fall fast approaching it is time to plant fall cover crops and veggies. I've already started scallions, broccoli, Chinese cabbage, beets in soil blocks; Brussels sprouts, chard, kale is in the ground and I will be planting carrots and spinach this week.


Take a look at the size of the fennel that Carolyn grew, didn't she do well! Did you know that the fennel root tastes similar to parsnip.

For lunch we made a soup of leftovers: real chicken broth, snow peas that we shelled, fennel root, spring onions, noodles (from the store!) and topped with spicy globe basil.

After Market

After the Market on Saturday we came home and unloaded the vegetables that didn't sell at the market which we then use as a basis for meals during the week. For example for Saturday lunch I made a salad using half a bag of mixed cut lettuce (6 varieties), half a bunch of spring onions (4), and a kohlrabi (peeled and shredded). I added some local cheddar cheese although usually I sprinkle crumbled Feta cheese on top. Total cost $2.75, excluding the cheese, for a family of four!

Saturday dinner consisted of more vegetables: beet greens, 1 red and 1 green onion plus the tops, 2 Chinese kale (broccoli) and a pound of snow peas along with a can of locally caught tuna that we processed last summer in the pressure canner. Total cost for vegetables $5.25; not including the beet since that will be used in another meal.


This week we will have the following vegetables at the Sherwood Saturday Market (9 am - 1 pm):

Basil - Spicy Globe, Sweet Italian and Thai
Green Garlic
Green Onions
Lettuce - Bibb, Buttercrunch, Simpson, Speckles and Rouge D'Hiver
Peas - English, Sugar Snap and Snow
Swiss Chard

All grown without chemical sprays or petrochemical fertilizers.

Mini has her first lamb

We hadn't expected this but Mini gave birth to her first lamb on 5/13, a nice surprise for my return from the UK. Both ewe and lamb are doing great, here he is resting in the apple orchard while Mini enjoys the lush spring growth in the enjoining pasture. Mini is the daughter of Ruby (CVM) and Mel (also CVM). CVM sheep are considered a rare breed with a great fleece for spinning.

We have rovings, batts and yarn from our CVM and Romney sheep available for sale at the Sherwood Saturday Market. Also check out our hand felted soaps, spinning kits and wonderful hats and gloves.

Colossus has twins

Colossus, a rather large Romney, finally has twins. Both are male, all of our other twins have been male/female, so this is a little unusual for us, both are doing fine though and have bonded well with the ewe.

Last year Colossus, also had twins, a male came first, however the female got stuck and the ewe wouldn't let me help until it was too late.

Butterball has twins

Butterball (Romney) had twins
last week, the male is white and the female variegated gray with a black tail and zipper along its back. The male lamb came out quite small and is being somewhat rejected by the ewe, in fact Butterball is not particularly good at lambing.

Last year she gave birth to twins in the middle of a horrendous storm in the middle of the night and ended up with her legs pointing up hill and wasn't able to get up to tend to her lambs. She doesn't seem to have the patience that Ruby and Paris have to let the lambs feed. We are supplementing the male with a bottle to help him gain some weight.

Here is a photo of the the female lamb quite content.

Two more lambs

First time mom, Paris gave birth this morning to twins, one mixed gray (girl) and one white (boy).

Paris has the highest quality fleece so Debra is super excited.

2/22/10 Update. Paris has turned out to be a super mother (Ruby is too). Ewes and lambs are on the pasture now and are thriving.

First lambs of the season

Ruby gave birth to two delightful lambs Saturday morning, she knew exactly what to do - no help required birthing the lambs standing up right next to the lambing shed. I wish they were all so easy.

If they follow last years schedule the next one should be Butterball in 2-3 weeks followed by Big Mama and Colossus