~rainbow mondays~ best of farmstand

being out at the farm and hearing discussions of market display strategies a week ago, i realized i have been planning on sorting through to find some of my “best of” market displays, and just haven’t gotten around to it in the 3 years i’ve been working for gathering together. while some display strategies value symmetry and delineation, i tend to accentuate color and abundance. this post starts with one of my favorites from near the beginning of the outdoor market season last year, the season of peas and berries and cherry tomatoes! i always try to be the rainbow whenever the produce in season and other market constraints allow…

the “triple” is one of my favorite racks to build a display on, because i love how you can create a waterfall of abundance cascading down its 3 surfaces. the early bunches of spring veggies are well suited to this.

but mid-summer veggies work on the triple as well. summer squash and green beans help fill out the display when bunches are fewer, and berries can hide on the bottom shelf and help pop out the zucchini varieties when we only have a few berries to sell.

i have put in a request for more blue vegetables, by the way. it’s usually the only color i’m missing!

the “wall” is a favorite display of mine in summer, less so in spring and fall when it is full of greens and nothing else. i love to eat greens, but displaying them is not my strong suit. i really like to paint with peppers, though, and last year we found that they worked well in the wall of boxes, when we had so much other produce (melons and tomatoes) taking up the more horizontal surfaces. last sunday we got to hear the story of the wooden boxes that our farmer obtained from an old russian farmer from whom he was buying some other equipment.

but peppers can sell themselves off of any surface, really. what’s not to love about all that color?

for a change, i decided one day to display the few remaining corn cobs of the season in less of a “pile” format, as it is usually done.

when it comes to winter squash, the rainbow has the required blue, but i’ve also put in requests for red and purple squash varieties (they may not exist, but it never hurts to ask!)

sometimes black and white add a great accent to the colorful peppers. late fall roots are starting to take over for the dwindling summer nightshades in this display.

when it turns into beige veggie season (winter), i try to still find a way to bring some color (cut a watermelon radish in half – bam!). we always have a great leek crop throughout the winter season, and i discovered that the leek fan is a great way to draw the eye, and the customer over to the beige roots section and strike up a conversation about soup.

sometimes it can be tricky to display greens in a pleasing manner, but every now and then i pull it off. i liked this raab/carrot/beet situation from an early spring market last year. i would have been docked points for my tablecloth being out of level, but i did attend to symmetry with the veggies…

late spring rhubarb from this season lent itself well to the leek fan format. it sells itself, truly, but the display work is such great therapy, a great lesson in impermanence, and a great excuse to play with color!


2 comments to ~rainbow mondays~ best of farmstand

  • Holly.

    Way to be creative with the nature’s bountiful gifts. If only JC Market would hire you, shopping would be like going to an art gallery.
    Then maybe I’d actually enjoy grocery shopping.

  • camp boss

    LOVED LOVED LOVED this!!! I might have to try and stop by market more often just to see your veggie art! that rhubarb has me drooling for many yummy rhubarb baked goods!!

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