Farmers market opens season

By Karl Terry, PNT Managing Editor

Tomatoes weren’t available but squash, onions and various herbs were plentiful.

Vendors at the first Portales Farmers Market of the season said they had a good day Monday despite the hardships of a late freeze followed by hot windy conditions in June.

“I think it’s been really good today and I don’t think we confused people too much with the new time,” Portales Farmers Market manager Margie Plummer said.

Alicia Johnson of Portales said she was visiting the market for the first time said she was appreciative of the chance to buy at a local farmers market. She liked the idea of buying from local producers because she feels it is safer and fresher.

“A lot of time you buy at a grocery store an you never know how old it is,” Johnson said. “It’s just fresher (at farmers market).”

Charles Eaton of Eaton’s Legacy Farms in Portales says his produce is organic and he uses only legacy varieties. He said legacy vegetables are original varieties and not hybrids, which allows him to better control the quality in his produce.

“When it comes to a legacy brand most people don’t know the difference between it and a hybrid,” Eaton said. “With hybrids you plant ‘em and you never know what you’re going to get.”

Eaton said everyone had been asking about tomatoes and no one has any yet because of the tough growing season so far. He had lots of yellow squash to sell, which he said seemed to be the case with all the other vendors.

“Everybody has squash right now,” Plummer said. “ But that’s OK, it’s good.”

Sonya Burson of Wes and Sonya Burson Farms said she had plenty of squash as well but they quickly sold out of other things.

“We had some cucumbers early, but they vanished pretty quick,” Burson said.

Portales Farmers Market

When: 5 p.m. every Monday and Thursday
Where: First and Avenue B, Portales
What: Variety of locally grown produce