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Sunday, April 5, 2015



I am doing a CSA again this year and still have membership spaces available. The CSA model has been a huge boon to small farms as local food is becoming more in demand. The way it works is that as a member you pay in the spring for a share of the harvest through out the growing season. It helps the farmer by funding their season start up costs. Spring is the most expensive time of year to be a farmer. There are seeds, tools and inputs to be purchased, people to hire, marketing to manage, all things that cost money. For the member the initial investment pays off in the freshest most nutritious produce you can get your hands on because it is coming straight from your local farm at the peak of ripeness. When veggies don't have to be shipped across the country they can be harvested when they are truly ripe and have the best flavor. They will also last longer in your house because they haven't endured days or weeks of travel. It is a great way to support your local farms and farmers. If you want to learn more about CSAs or find one near you (if you're not in DC/Southern Maryland) check out Local Harvest.


United Stated Botanical Garden- Exposed: The Secret Life of Roots (link)

I went to see this exhibit at the United States Botanical Garden. If you are in DC it is a must see. You get to see the underground world of plants. It was eye opening for me. I had seen plenty of drawings but to actually see the whole root systems in person was incredible. As a farmer who cares about soil health everything that goes on below the surface of the soil is invaluable. Those roots support not only the plants above but play into the intricate ecosystem of soil. Don't forget, 2015 is the international year of soils

Rooting DC

This is an annual event where thousands of people come together in DC to learn about good food and gardening. It is free and there are dozens of local food and gardening companies who bring displays to educate you about their services and there were tons of free classes and hands-on workshops. We set up a table for the farm and talked to lots of folks about what we do. I also got to attend workshops on raised beds and orchards. 
Our table display

Gayle helped out with a craft for the kiddos

YMCA Food Forum

The YMCA of DC hosted a food forum as part of their new healthy living initiative. They invite me, Rocklands Farm, Polyface Farm, Relay Foods and MOM's Organic Market to speak about how and why to eat local in DC. A local blogger Meg Bollenback did a write up on the forum. I felt truly honored to be invited to speak with such a distinguished panel. To be honest, when I heard someone was coming from Polyface I thought "this is way out of my league!" However, the panel was incredibly down to earth and insightful and it was so much more fun than I expected it to be. The audience were mostly people who already had some consciousness about the subject and asked really interesting questions that sparked a lively discussion. Keep an eye on the DC Y, they have more of these forums coming up. 


Yes, harvest!!! The hoop house has meant that I had things to harvest in February and March. The greens that had been sitting in there all winter really took off in March when the days got longer and nights got a little less frosty. I was harvesting Spinach, Mizuna, *Yukina, Arugula and Choi. It is a mixed blessing. This time last year I could focus purely on planting. This year I also have to find time to harvest, wash, pack and deliver!!!

*A special note on Yukina. It is my new favorite green. The flavor is incredible. It's like a sweeter, richer spinach but with a perfectly soft, almost creamy, texture. I have been just walking through grazing on it straight out of the hoop house and adding it to every dinner I can. 

Washing Spinach

Salad Mix

Greens headed for the restaurants

Production and Cultivation

The Spring Open House was March 21st. The weather was gorgeous but the turn out was a bit low.  How can I get you all out to the farm? I offer a tour and free lunch in exchange for a little bit of help which ends up being fun and rewarding on its own. I am open to any tips on how to entice people to come out and join us for the day. Seriously, send your tips to

We did get some great things accomplished at the open house. David led a crew feeding the orchard, berries and rhubarb with composted manure and gave them a fresh layer of mulch. We also started building our two raised beds. More on that bellow.

Mulch crew on the blackberries

Rhubarb waking up


I have also started direct seeding in the field; sugar snap peas, snow peas, spinach, arugula, choi, turnips, radishes, carrots and onions. 

Inoculating peas

Trellising for peas


The greenhouse is packed full of baby plants working up to being big enough to go out into the field. 

Seeding Kale

Baby tomatoes

Germinating beets; red, golden and chioggia

Cucumbers and Zucchini in front

Zucchini to go in the hoop house

Tomato babies growing up


Brassicas hardening off; Spring Raab, Lacinato Kale and Vates Kale

Raised Beds

I am building two raised beds 16'x4' to grow herbs in. I am trying to increase herb production this year and hoping this helps. The advantages to raise beds are that the soil stays warmer, has less weed pressure and is higher off the ground so easier to work in. 
Materials delivered by Lowes

Super awesome volunteers setting blocks

carefully leveling it out

Caroline and Kathryn working on drainage for uphill of the beds

So many great overalls! 

So close! 

Puddy Time

Leaning in

Puddy is so glad spring has finally sprung!