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Sunday, June 8, 2014

June and our first CSA Share

Lower field in June
It is almost summer and it's starting to feel like it. We had some hot humid days this week. The summer crops are loving it but the spring crops are getting stressed out. They got planted so late because of the cold wet winter that wouldn't quit and now they think it's time for them to be done. I'm stringing them along for as long as I can keep them alive and somewhat happy. Otherwise we will have gotten a very short harvest out of them.

Speaking of summer, our Summer Solstice Volunteer Day is right around the corner. What better way to mark the longest day of the year than by celebrating the life summer gives at the farm. Join us June 21st at 9am for a farm tour followed by a few hours of working on projects in groups and wrap it up with lunch provided by one of our fine chefs.

We had a feisty visitor this week. I noticed this snapping turtle in the beets from a distance. When I went over to check her out she was extremely aggressive. They live mostly in water but travel over land to lay their eggs. I did not see any damage to the plants so she wasn't there to eat. The eggs incubate for 9-18 weeks depending on temperature and she could have laid up to 80. I'll be keeping an eye out for those. I just hope she didn't lay any in the fields.


In the harvest bins this week:
Butter Head Lettuce, Red Bibb Lettuce, Romaine, Red Sails Lettuce, Arugula, Mustard Greens, Kale, Radishes, Strawberries, Grape Leaves, Broccoli Raab, Broccoli DeCiccio, Baby Carrots, Red and Green Choi, Sage, Lavender, Thyme, Oregano, Mint...
Red Bibb

Vates Kale

Choi, Kale and Radishes

Red Choi

First baby carrots

Mustard Greens

Yaya Carrots

Production and Cultivation

Baby Lady Bug!!! Killer of Aphids

We had our first CSA Delivery this week. Luz, a member of the Lost Generation Book Club at The Heights has been volunteering regularly and stenciled the CSA boxes for us.

CSA Boxes ready to go
In the box this week: Choi, Romaine, Mesclun Mix, Strawberries, Radishes, Kale, Arugula and Herb Bundle
CSA Week 1- lots of greens, as you'll have in Spring

Lettuce interplanted with Carrots

As I promised last week, here is a look at the leaning and lowering tomato trellising system. For a video of what I am trying to accomplish click here

Above each bed of tomato plants run two parallel pieces of bamboo on either side of the row. Each plant is trellised up to alternating sides. From this perspective, every other plant is attached to the bamboo on the right side. 

The string is about 15' long and is wrapped around this hook and then runs down to the base of the plant. As the plants grow up the string they will eventually reach the ceiling. At that point I can let some slack out and move the hook down the line to give the vine more room to grow. 

The plants are attached to the sting using these plastic clips. As the plants grow I train them to grow along only one main stem. I do this by aggressively pruning all extra growth that is not leaves and flowers. I think it will be exciting to watch this system progress. The plants are very strong and healthy so far and growing fast!

First Sour Cherry in the Orchard

Walking Onions, these things are crazy cool

Walking Onion


Tomatoes under cover
All of the tomatoes and peppers are now in the ground and covered with a floating row cover. The hope is to exclude the Colorado Potato Beetle and Flea Beetles until the plants are big and strong. I will keep the tomatoes covered until they need to be trellised. 

Cynthia plantin Peppers!

150 pepper plants, 12 varieties

Eating Well

My dear friend Cynthia came to visit and worked with me all day Friday. For lunch we harvested and enjoyed a hearty salad.

This week's tasting menu at The Pig was:

dolma: pork liver dirty rice, arugula veloute (featuring our Grape Leaves)

burrata: arugula, mint, strawberry, chicharron (Arugula, Mint, Strawberries)

shio ramen: pork and wild onion broth, pork belly, egg, kale, garlic chives (Kale and Garlic Chives)

pulled pork bbq: grilled raab, alabama white sauce (Broccoli Raab)

buttermilk biscuits: strawberry gravy, cream, bacon bits (Strawberries!)

Puddy Time

Saturday I went to The Heights to try and sell some extra seedlings and spread the word about the farm and the Summer Volunteer Day. Puddy came along and helped. 

We had an impromptu play date this week with all the neighbor dogs at the farm...

Worn Out!

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