Saturday, June 14, 2014

{Photo Update} Shots Around the Farm

The storms are rumbling outside as the rain comes down gently. Bright and early this morning we raked up our very first cutting of alfalfa hay, that had been drying in the field for the last few days. Now we have a giant pile of alfalfa in our garage - it's kind of funny. We'll feed it into a baler and have a nice start at putting away hay for our pigs winter feed. We should get one or two more cuttings this year. After that we hoed until the rain mucked up the hoes. Then hand-weeded the spinach, for next weeks deliveries. Now some inside work getting ready for CSA and Farm Share deliveries next week - paperwork and final touches in the pack shed. Until then...

Here are some pictures from around the field yesterday. Thursday we had a huge workday, as we were finally able to get the tractor into the field and had the time. John ran the rotary plow by the potatoes, so we were able to finish mounding them (below). Then, he ran the tiller, shallowly, through the entire garden to give us a good jump on the weeds. So thrilled!

Final mounding on the early potatoes; yellow onions
to the left and zucchini to the right.
Our first year growing flint corn last year was a success, so we decided to give it a go again this year. Below you can see how our flint corn field and barley crop is gaining height. Our CSA customers will be getting freshly milled corn meal in their first boxes - it's truly delicious! We continue to experiment, as we planted extra acorn squash in the flint corn - whatever makes it is pig food for winter.

Thursday we were also able to FINALLY get our fencing done! Ugh, that is always a time to rejoice. The last of the five foot bean fencing was installed and the wood trellis went up.

A shot at the garden fencing - peas, beans (and cucumbers).
I always love driving home and seeing the wood trellis in the distance. The final touch will be adding the trellis string, when the beans start reaching.

Wood trellis, the last of the fencing to go in this year. Woot!
 The first CSA boxes will get beautiful, yummy greens!

Red romaine lettuce, Rouge d'Hiver.
Kale and radish bed. That Red Russian kale is
doing mighty fine!
The first planting of carrots are getting big!
We have two beds of cabbage, early and late season. Ooooo, I can't wait for fresh cole slaw and grilled cabbage. The heads are looking nice, and we have been blessed to have very little pressure from cutworms this year.

The early cabbage bed - Early Jersey Wakefield
and Copenhagen Market.
We were waiting on the tillage, so Thursday we were able to get the LAST of the transplants into the field. This included a bed of muskmelon and trial watermelon (below) and a second bed of broccoli.

Hale's Best muskmelons, and a trial of Melitopolski watermelon.
 A shot at the middle of the garden - swiss chard, celery, red onions, sunflowers and on and on.

Everything is filling in with with height, color, shapes and smells!
Thursday not only were we finally able to get the tractor in, but the soil was good to run the seeder through as well. That meant planting more beets and radishes.

The third planting of beets went in Thursday.
Guess what I spotted yesterday?! Little bitty pea pods!!! Last week I was madly craving these delights. Fresh garden peas are my absolute faaaaavorite! So I munched on a couple pea shoots. We'll be picking snap peas in a matter of days. I expect those wax beans to flower anytime now too (on the right side of the picture below).

Amish Snap peas and Dragon's Tongue wax beans.
Perhaps this last picture is a little anti-climactic, but we installed some great new shelving in the pack shed! Pack sheds are set up to have a good "flow" of work, supplies, etc. and we have been working on improving ours - based on our experience and advice from our farmer mentor. We take our time installing permanent things until we know we will really need them. The rainy weekend means more time for work in this building, where we spend countless hours packing, sorting, weighing and delighting in the fruits of our labor that we get to deliver to people. And sorting apples! John spends many hours rocking out to good tunes and sorting each apple by hand.

Okay, I couldn't end on that about baby pigs instead?!

Feeding time - find your spot!
So much cuteness it's hard to handle!!!

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