As we ease our way into spring, more of our Tasmanian hydroponic growers begin production again – this week we welcome back capsicums (albeit only green so far!) from Tassie Pride and truss tomatoes from Cracknells Tomatoes. Nick & Sue Cracknell have been growing tomatoes for over thirty years, but scaled up significantly about ten years ago, moving to a fully hydroponic system in a glasshouse heated with biomass destined for landfill. They’re now producing enough fruit (yes, it’s a fruit..) to supply all of the Woolworths stores in Tasmania (and us!) but it’s still a proper family farm – Nick, Sue and son Matt all live at the Granton farm and there’s even an road-side honesty-box stall out the front!
This week’s boxes also have a fore-taste of one of the great gifts of summer – garlic! $30, $40 and organic boxes contain one big or two small spring garlic, which look very similar to spring onions but certainly don’t smell like them… As the season progresses the garlic will begin to form cloves, and then go to seed, at which point the garlic is hung to dry (the seed heads and stem can also be eaten!) but it’s also delicious at this early stage, and the whole plant from root to leaf can be eaten and is full of delicious garlic flavour. We’ve sourced this week’s garlic from Bream Creek Community Market Garden and Tasmanian Natural Garlic and Tomatoes – both growers grow using organic principles and BCCMG also feature heavily in this week’s organic boxes, supplying broccolini, silverbeet, fennel, cabbage, and even a couple of baby cauliflower that have headed out to a couple of lucky people!