The Weblog

This page contains news, event information, and other items added by myself, the intrepid farmer-in-process at Old 99. I send out a message every week, but most are set with a delete date about two weeks later. I archive some of the posts if they have content other than weekly availability of produce and meat.

You can send me questions too, which if they are of a general nature, I can post to this Old99 blog.

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Old 99 Farm, week of Sept 21, fall solstice

We’re having seaonally warm weather still, and crops are doing fine. Greenhouse tomatoes, grown in the ground, are avoiding the blight that has killed off most outside tomato crops. We have some lovely huge beefsteak types as well as the delicate orange and yellow plume types and cherry clusters too.

Peppers are doing well as are the eggplant. Soon you’ll be buying them from California or Florida again!

Lamb and beef/veal and chicken are still in stock. In a couple weeks will have a large supply of ground beef and beef bones. George the bull is meeting with the butcher tomorrow. I confess to feeling sentimental, Geo was born here, has been the herd patriarch for 5 years. But it is time for a change, for the good of the herd.

Did you see the news about the People’s Climate March in NYC? 310 000 people, including some I know from here. Click to I sure hope the global leaders get the message. A new study on population trends has us on trajectory to peak at 11B, not 9B as per the scientific consensus in recent years. That is terrible, climate/eco collapse + population peak = bad news.

On a saner note, do you remember Jane Jacobs, the noted author, urbanologist, thinker, iconoclast? I met an old acquaintance this weekend, who knew her personally and did several interviews with her. Her is a quote from the transcript of one session. You can read it all at

Another thing that I think is interesting is; look, I started with just the streets and neighborhoods. The smallest, most immediate things– and the parks– that you could in a city. That opened up to me puzzles that I had to pursue about the economy of cities as a whole.
That opened up puzzles to me that I had to pursue about how this behavior of cities affected the world outside it– outside cities– and how cities affected each other– with their replacements of imports, and with their new kinds of exports, and with their demands for imports, and so on. And the result of that was Cities and the Wealth of Nations. And that was taking in the world of cities and non-cities. It was bigger still.
The Nature of Economies is about the whole universe. But it all started with the streets and the parks.

Healthy eating,
(stay healthy so you can stay out of hospitals where superbugs hang out!)

Ian and Camelia

Old 99 FArmweek of Sept 12

Lots of yellow plume tomatoes, cherry tomoates and beefsteak tomatoes.
NOt so many eggs.
please see the list.

Old 99 Farm, week of Sept 7 2014

Market day is here already tomorrow, so please order by noon thursday latest. I expect to have fresh lamb from our pastures via the butcher.

Big news this week, certified organic raw milk dairyman Mark McAfee is visiting Ontario and will speak at the Copetown Community Centre on Monday Sept 16, 7:30. His topic: The New Science of Farm-Fresh, Unprocessed Milk: Still a Health Hazard?
Mark, founder and spokesperson for the Raw Milk Institute (RAWMI) in California, proposes an alternative point of view on raw milk safety, a proposal for legalization in Ontario, the role of herdshares in community-based agriculture, and the role that RAWMI training can play in a thriving and self-regulating agricultural sector.
This talk is hosted by the Hamilton chapter of the Weston A Price Foundation. Potluck at 6:30, talk at 7:30 at the Copetown Community Centre on Governors Rd.
Bring your hubby or wifey and kids for the potluck, or just come for the talk; learn what’s good about raw dairy products for your health.

Now Old 99 produce: we have lots of veggies, in case you wondered?! As of Sept 7th, we can offer over 60 items including the following crops: dill, chives, lovage, mint, basil, beet tops, beet root, tomatoes, chard, rhubarb, celeriac, eggplant, carrots, bush beans (slender purples and greens), snap peas, peppers, cucumbers, summer squashes and kale. The raspberries are ripe, and showing a bountiful crop. Camelia has prepared dill pickles in whole and spears. The raspberries are ripe, doing u-pic this week. The last puppy was sold yesterday and I admit to feeling the loss; she was a lovable puppy.

Here’s your energy/climate thought for the week. Cooking. Did you know that while modern cooking stoves are convenient, when it comes to energy use they leave a lot to be desired. As described on, the thermal efficiency of an electric stove does not exceed that of a conventional open fire. In both cases almost 90% of the primary energy is lost during the cooking process.

Cooking food could be achieved in a far more energy efficient way, especially if the cooking pot itself is insulated. This is the principle behind the fireless cooker, a well-insulated box that keeps food simmering with only the heat of the cooking pot itself. A fireless cooker doubles the efficiency of any type of cooking device because it shortens the time on the fire and limits heat transfer losses.

In the early twentieth century, fireless cookers were common additions to western kitchens, similar to the refrigerator or cooking stove. Some models even integrated fireless cookers with gas or electric stoves. These functioned by lowering an insulated hood over the cooking pot once the heat had been switched off.

So if you want to do your part, read up at the link provided, then try some of the methods for reducing waste heat in your kitchen.

Healthy eating,
Ian and Camelia

In step or Out of Step?

When have you ever felt your values or worldview or ethics were out of step with the world (room, neighbourhood, dining table, etc.) around you? I post these thoughts from Albert Bates, posted today at

…Robert Jay Lifton, author of Death in Life: Survivors of Hiroshima, wrote an op-ed for The Sunday New York Times (Aug 23, 2014) called The Climate Swerve, pointing out the sudden shift in awareness towards the existential threat we face from our careless destruction of the atmospheric commons.

…To truly inhabit the 21st century we will all share a common epiphany: that we have reached the Age of Limits and the Era of Consequences. We are at or soon approaching that inflection point. Here, now. From that shift it will follow as inexorably as night follows day that the ethics of the past are not just passé, but counterproductive. Anyone clinging to them will be regarded as a fool, a fossil and a social pariah. ([ig: out of step]

…The late Zenmaster, Shunryu Suzuki Roshi, in Zen Mind Beginners Mind said it is important to understand that Zen is nothing special. Any roshi will say the same. There is no attainment. Just sit. Nothing special.

…As the ethics of the 20th century become stranded, the ethics of permaculture will become invisible. Permaculture will become the new normal. It will simply be taken for granted.

… So too, Permaculture is nothing special. Acting ethically towards future generations is nothing special. Living today as if there really is going to be a tomorrow is not a fringe activity. Just do it. Already, everyone else is starting to, too.

Say I, on the matter of climate, it is beginning to be impossible, just barely, to ignore it, or deny it.

I hope you will go to This documentary from with make you check your bearings, your ‘out-of-stepness’. Even the trailer is compelling.

Old 99 Farm, week of Aug 31 2014

Reminder notice only: lots of veg here at the farm. See for the complete list of over 60 items.

Fresh Lamb will be in the freezers next week.

Healthy Eating,
Ian and Camelia

Old 99 Farm, week of Aug 24, 2014

As of Aug 24th, we can offer 64 items including the following crops: dill, chives, lovage, mint, basil, beet tops, beet root, tomatoes (three varieties), chard, rhubarb, kohlrabi, eggplant, carrots, bush beans (slender purples and greens), snap peas, peppers, cucumbers, summer squashes and kale. The early and mid season raspberries are past, but there are already new fruitlets on the everbearing which will provide a small crop in early Sept.

Camelia is cooking prepared foods from our produce: garlic pesto, cucumber relish, quiches (on order). Dill pickles are next, but you can make your own too! Cukes by the bushel available.

Beef cuts are now available, a total of about 500 lbs of pastured meats. There are several geese in the freezer. Place your order for lamb now for pickup in September. Roasting chickens are now here as of Aug 12th.

My current price is $6/XL doz. I sell mixed size dozens that weigh at least 588 gm (medium), 672 grams, the ‘large’ size dozen, and Extra Large, 770gm plus carton. Please bring in recycled cartons.

Raw Honey
We have harvested our first crop of honey of 2014 this past week. It’s a lovely golden colour with a fragrant bouquet, likely it’s from the honey locust flowers. You bring your jar and fill it here, starting in July, or buy in prefilled mason jars.

Old 99 Farm, week of Aug 17 2014

Bumper crop of cukes, zukes and tomatoes, oh and eggplants too. Peppers here but not in abundance yet.
Regular greens too, see list.

Getting a load of 200 bales of straw in the next hour or two, quick notice again from my farmer source. Bedding for the cows indoors for the winter. Can anyone come by tomorrow tuesday for a couple hours to help? Would really make the difference if we can get this in the barn before Wed when it’s supposed to rain.

If you ordered roasting chickens, please come soon to pick up. I took the remaining 60 birds to be butchered today so the freezers will be fuuulll.

Maremma pups are lovely. still have 4, two males, two females, have reduced price to $300. Interested?

Old 99 Farm, Week of Aug 10 2014

Writing tuesday am, we got 20ml rain last nite, starting right after we got the hay in the barn. Thank you so much to Kate and son, Crystal, Kaelin and daughters for your helping hands.

Beefsteak tomatoes are ripe in the greenhouse now, along with the yellow plum minis. The beans are ready to harvest, purple and green varieties.

As well the zukes, cukes, vegetable marrow, beets, carrots, mixed salad, eggplants, garlic, peppers, herbs, and chard.

There is beef in the freezer and roasting chickens fresh from the butcher, all raised here on pasture of course.

Camelia has made up another batch of cuke relish and pesto.

We could really use recycled grocery bags and sacks, along with egg cartons.

Come on out!

Healthy eating,
Ian and Camelia

Hay Request urgent for monday

we got one load in yesterday but another just arrived and it’s going to rain this evening. Could a willing family member come over today from 3 on or any time into the eveniing to give a hand for an hour?

thanks ever so much,

Chickens not monday

Not monday pickup, my error, didn’t check with the processor. First pickup Tuesday after 4 to 6pm or contact me for what works for you.