2017, Week 35

The first batch of cowpeas is ready for us to harvest for Tuesday morning’s farm stand! 

Hello farm friends!

The hardware store will be CLOSED this Saturday, September 2nd for a family vacation weekend. Thus we will only have produce boxes on Wednesdays this week. We hope you all enjoy Matthews Alive and/or whatever Labor Day traditions you may have!

This week, expect to see:
Tomatoes (still limited), eggplant, okra, cowpeas, garlic, peppers, honeyflower bouquets, and more – all grown at our farm.

Produce boxes this week will have slicing tomatoes, okra, eggplant, a baby winter squash, garlic, & sweet bell peppers.

Order Produce Boxes Here!
Our farm stand is open on Tuesday at 10am at 409 W Charles Street in downtown Matthews! Produce, flowers, and honey are available Wednesday-Friday at Renfrow Hardware, as available. Tomato supplies are still limited so we anticipate closing up sometime between 12pm and 1pm on Tuesday, instead of 2pm. 

Multiplier Onions

We grow seed stock for our favorite perennial multiplier onion, and now is the time to plant them! The ones in this photo above were planted on Thursday and are already this far out of the ground by Monday! Talk about fast food!! 
We will have these multiplier onions for sale at the farm stand in a few weeks, as they are a very quick crop and the earliest of fall scallion-type onions. If you want to try growing these in your own garden, come get a few at the hardware store within the next month – each bulb typically creates 8-12 scallion shoots in a clump. Plant each bulb 4-6 inches apart if you are growing them for your own seed, but slightly closer together for fresh eating.

Like with garlic, grow enough to satisfy your culinary needs and leave a few mounds alone to create mature bulbs next summer to pull in mid-summer and replant around Labor Day!


This week will have the first batch of ripe and ready cowpeas available at the farm stand! In another week or two we hope to have enough to open up the field for pick-your-own peas.

The most well-recognized variety of cowpea around here is the black-eye-pea, but we grow about 5 different varieties of heirloom peas grown in the Matthews area for generations.

Never tried cooking this southern staple before? Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds, one of the seed companies we stock at the hardware store, has an extensive page of recipe ideas. A primary mission of Baker Creek is to keep old, heirloom varieties of fruits, vegetables, herbs and flowers in cultivation in backyards and on small farms all across the US and the world.

Cowpea Recipes

New Growth

Much of the farm right now looks like this – small seedlings promising new life and abundant fall root crop and greens harvests from late September through the New Year. Pictured here are what will soon be round, red radishes!
But sadly, to make space for new growth we had to get rid of some of the old summer crops. One struggle people often have within their backyard gardens is holding on to summer plants for many extra weeks, with hopes of a small handful of tomatoes or squash, when the plants are really about finished and you would be best “fed” if you pulled up the old crops and hustled to get some fast-growing greens and root veggies in the ground to keep your garden producing throughout the fall! Try making pickles out of the last few green tomatoes on a half-dead plant and toss out some lettuce, kale, or carrot seeds!
Good-natured Gaspar is always cheerful and hard-working around the farm. Over the past few weeks he and Ruth have especially worked hard, pulling out dozens of spent tomato plants, hoeing weeds for days on end, and really helping get the farm in a good position for a jam-packed fall season. They’ve been the true farm hustlers in the past couple of weeks – we really couldn’t have any better workers than these two!

SkillPop Gardening Class

taught by David & Pressly

We also have a SkillPop class about fall gardening scheduled for Thursday evening, September 7th from 6:30-8:30pm. David & Pressly teach this one together and, weather-permitting, we will start out at the farm and finish the class at the hardware store. We will talk about all things related to fall gardening!
Register for SkillPop Class Here!

Produce Boxes

This week’s boxes includes slicing tomatoes, okrasweet bell peppers, a baby winter squashgarlic, and eggplant.
Order Produce Boxes Here!
How it works:

  1. Pre-ordered $20 produce boxes are available on Wednesday this week, with ingredients and the order form link updated in each week’s newsletter.
  2. Please place Wednesday orders before 2pm on Tuesday.
  3. Pickup of produce is always at Renfrow Hardware during business hours (Wednesday 8am-5pm).
  4. Payment is accepted upon pickup like any other hardware store purchase. Ask for your order at the counter and we will get it for you.
  5. We cannot reserve quantities of produce that are less than these $20 boxes, but if you are looking to place a specific flower order or have a different type of request, please email me directly – Pressly@RenfrowFarms.com.

Have a wonderful week,

~Pressly Williams & the Renfrow crew