“On the Farm” – 3/3/2019

For all of you that have already signed up for our 2019 Spring CSA we’d like to say Thank You! For those of you that have not signed up, or are still thinking about it, please know that the deadline is March 15th. We set this deadline for planning purposes as you might assume. If you’re not sure whether a CSA is for right for you, grab a drink and read this, it should answer some questions as you try to stay warm on this cold gloomy day.

Yes it is cold, it is damp and if the weather app is correct we will have freezing temperatures the next few nights. Most of what is growing right now (lettuce, sweet peas, chard, kale, broccoli, cilantro, collards, onions, garlic, green onions, carrots, Napa Cabbage) are cool weather crops that can more than handle our brief cold temperatures. However, in order to get a jump on the season we’ve planted potatoes, early tomatoes, bell peppers, and delicious green beans. These crops simply can’t handle cold weather. So in an effort to fool mother-nature I use frost cloth to keep the bite off the potatoes.

Yukon Gold Potatoes under frost cloth

It takes a little more effort to protect our tomatoes, bell peppers and the delicious green beans. The tomatoes and bell peppers are planted in black plastic “mulch” that serves to reduce weeds and increase the soil temperatures. Until it warms up, we keep clear plastic over them, as well as their green bean neighbors, in order to increase the heat. Think of it as a mini-greenhouse.

Since the weather is dipping below freezing, the kids and I added a frost cloth layer under the clear plastic this morning to keep our tomatoes and peppers from freezing.

On a side note, you might have noticed, that our high-tunnel has no plastic. We were forced to make some changes and replace the plastic sooner than we thought. #farming. No fear, we have made the required changes and received new plastic coverings. Now we just have to wait for a warmer day to install it. Speaking of high-tunnels, we plan to have an additional high-tunnel installed before the fall. This means more fresh clean vegetables for an extended period.

Seedlings

The genesis of any season are the seeds and seedlings; this is where most of the small membership fees goes. Currently, we have numerous flats/trays of seedlings growing under plastic with heating pads. Cucumbers, tomatoes, melons, lettuce, Red Chinese cabbage, escarole, cilantro, and more are growing in trays ready to be transplanted as soon as possible.

A Honey Bee frame of brood

Last – and certainly not least – are our honey bees. When the temperature is above about 53 degrees, these ladies are out and about searching for the early spring flowers. We should probably be harvesting honey around May.

To our CSA members and potential members please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.