Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Summer That Wasn't

OK, here we are August 27th. It's raining again and about 50 degrees. Not exactly what one would expect for this time of year. Typical summer crops are just not performing as usual. I keep expecting that the outdoor tomatoes will get the blight with this inclimate weather. They keep hanging on. Lots of tomatoes on the vine, mostly green and hard. I'm no expecting much of a harvest at this point. Squash are making some fruits but not nearly up to par. Healthy looking plants just not much production. There are no bees so it could be partly due to lack of polination. Cucumers are just setting there. I tilled in the melons. It was obvious they were not going to do it. No eggplant, a few peppers from the greenhouse but unimpressive.

On the flip side we have broccoli. Beautiful broccoli and the kale and chard are the healthiest I've ever seen. Asian style salad greens and some incredible arugula. This is atypical. The indoor toms are starting to kick in OK. We're getting between 60 and 100lbs per week. New radish's should be on this week and we have turnips and beets up and looking great. Winter squash is looking good and still making fruit. We've been digging a few new potatoes and the main crop is in full flower and standing tall and looks great. new carrots are up, cultivated and look great. Direct sown onions will be weeded today an are also looking good. Corn looks like it will make it. And oh yes, the straberries are back on and true to fashion they are the best of the season. Big, fat, shiny and super sweet. Green beans are on and also look and taste great!

We have most of our winter crops in at this point but we are still sowing a few things like kale, collards, choi and lettuce We'll be transplanting out kale and choi today. We have about sixteen new beds ready to plant and a couple beds of beets that did not germ well so I'll be replacing those today as well. We'll be direct sowing onions, beets, turnips, carrots, greens and peas for tendrils also. We have the FEAST kids coming out to lend a hand so we should get in a good day despite the rain.

Been working on the firewood pile. With the weather like it is I'm feeling antsy to get it in. We just got the barn closed in so I have extra storgae that I have not had before. Having big o'l piles of split, stacked and cured firewood make me feel rich indeed.

At this point I'm still hopeful for a nice fall growing season. We do well that time of year if we have the product so we are concentrating on that.

Restaraunt sales have been good and picking up. I have to say although we are not harvesting in abundance right now, everything that we are picking is of the best quality and the chefs really appreciate that. We've made big strides in our fertility this year and it shows. Everything is just luscious.

So there you have it. The wackiness continues but we seen to be adapting to it just fine. This has been a difficult year growing wise so I'm just happy we have done as well as we have. I not counting out that we'll have our best year ever.

Keep it real folks.

Farmer John

Monday, August 11, 2008

Coming out of a summer lull

This has been an odd year weather wise. The cool temps have pushed all of the summer crops back by a good month if not more. Things are starting to kick in though. I was just out in the greenhouses and there are quite a few tomatoes that are ripe and ripening. Normally at this point in the season we are harvesting a couple hundred pounds per week. We have just had a few here and there at this point. Hopefully the weather will kick in and w'll be in the tomatoe business. Peppers and eggplant have yet to set fruit. Summer squash has just been a trickle of normal. Grenn beans are just starting to happen. Garlic is harvested and curing and we have been harvesting a couple hundred pounds of baby potatoes for the last couple of weeks. Our main crop of potatoes wil be flowering in a couple of weeks.

So with the delay, havests have been a little off but we've been holding our own. We had a nice rain on Saturday and the weather looks promising this week so I'm expecting things will pop and we'll be in full production. Strawberries should be back on this week too and we have new beds of lettuce ready to harvest for greens. The farm looks really good right now. Everything is healthy and lucious.

Stil sowing new crops too. Just put in two beds of beets and a bed of turnips yesterday. Lots of sowing in flats right now too. Things like kale, collards, choi and the like. Recently sown carrots, beets, onions, radishes and greens are all up and looking good. We are setting up fo a tremendous fall. Hopefully we'll make up our shortfall from the flukey weather this summer.

Time to roll.

Keep well,

Farmer John