Fresh at Farmers Markets This Week

Noticing that markets don’t look the same as they did this time last May? It’s true. Warm weather accelerated the harvest last year, while a cooler spring and recent heavy rains are delaying things a bit now. But rest assured, more produce is coming—more options and larger quantities!

In addition to the abundance of asparagus, lettuce, and kale, spinach, and other leafy greens that have kicked off the season, find spring onions and pea shoots now—a sign that peas themselves aren’t far behind. Vendors like MiLo Acres (Black Mountain Tailgate Market, French Broad Food Co-op Wednesday Tailgate Market) and Ivy Creek Family Farm (North Asheville Tailgate Market, Weaverville Tailgate Market) offer the versatile veggie. Enjoy pea shoots raw in salads or cook them like a braising green; they need only a lightning-quick sauté to release their pea flavor.
Also look for early root veggies this week and in the weeks to come. Carrots, turnips, and beets were all spotted last weekend at Asheville City Market; carrots and turnips from New Moon Herbs Farm, turnips from Ol’ Turtle Farm, and beets from Earthlife Farm. Earthlife Farm also brought strawberries, another crop that’s heating up. Jake’s Farm (Asheville City Market, Black Mountain Tailgate Market, French Broad Food Co-op Wednesday Tailgate Market) expects berries this week. At the Jackson County Farmers Market, Shelton Family Farm’s berries have arrived, and Full Sun Farm offered up a few pints at Montford Farmers Market last week (pictured above).
One local food loving all the wet weather? Mushrooms. Markets from Black Mountain Tailgate Market to French Broad Food Co-op Wednesday Tailgate Market expect shiitakes this week. Lion’s mane mushrooms have been spotted at Montford Farmers Market. And, the Asheville Wild Foods Market has been bringing morels to Asheville City Market.
This week, Historic Marion Tailgate Market and East Asheville Tailgate Market open for their seasons, May 14 and 17, respectively. Waynesville Tailgate Market is now open, with their first Wednesday market happening this week, May 15. Mark your calendars now for Oakley Farmers Market’s Spring Fling on Thursday, May 23. The event, which runs 3:30-6:30 pm, will feature a visit from Gladheart Farm’s baby goats, live music, a puppet show, raffles, a flower-planting activity for children, and a fresh food demonstration for children thanks to Slow Food Asheville’s FEAST program. And that’s not all! Get full details at
To learn more about market events/find a market schedule, visit our farmers market calendar or browse our online Local Food Guide. Also check our post “Tailgate Tents Going Up” for a list of openings.

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