Monday, January 23, 2012

Happy Firsts

It's a lovely time of year here at the farm.  Lots of thinking and dreaming and planning.

AND this week marks the start of many fun activities.  Yesterday I planted my third batch of microgreens.  This is a new part of my winter gardening and eating.  I've been learning with every batch, sharing the crop both as gifts and as extras for sale.  The bottom line on microgreens is that they taste great!  This batch includes Green Wave mustard, Dwarf Grey Sugar peas, Red Russian kale, Arugula, and for the FIRST time: radishes and basil.

Freshly planted microgreens

FIRST planting for the 2012 garden (not the hoophouse):  I planted leeks, onions and parsley.  These are last year's seeds so they may be a bust but fresh seed is on its way  here.  For the hoophouse I planted: broccoli, cauliflower and tomatoes.  Probably I am jumping the gun on the tomatoes but I couldn't resist.  It turns out that I do not have any determinate tomato seeds so I will probably choose some and plant again in a couple of weeks.  The plan is to plant early tomatoes, intercropped with head lettuce plants, in part of the hoophouse.  In theory they will be an early, quick crop and the tomato plants will be pulled out to make room for other vegetables in the early summer.  SO, I am realizing as I write this that I had better make sure I grow determinate types for this experiment as otherwise it will be torturous and possibly silly to pull the plants out when I need the space, if they are still bearing.

Kale, chard and kolrabi for the hoophouse

FIRST predators of 2012: The night after planting, mice attacked the seeds that were unprotected by covers.  Tonight everything will be covered, except for the mouse traps!

Mice like brassica seeds.

Tomorrow morning I'll be planting my FIRST seeds in the hoophouse - mesclun, lettuce, snow peas, sweet peas and fava beans.

And today I got my FIRST seed order of the year in the mail.  I am one happy farmer.

Thursday, January 5, 2012


For information about the FARM SHARES go to the CSA BLOG THANKS!


We finished the hoophouse a few weeks ago. Mostly it was done on December 10. Since then I have been reading and dreaming and planning the crops I want to try out in there and when and where to plant them. It's a lot of fun. Here is an update on the process of finishing the structure. It's awesome! Building the end walls and doors
Rob worked all day until dark. Here he is attaching the side rails at dusk.
Finishing the east wall early Sunday morning.
Friends came over to help us get it together. Installing the side rails, taping rough spots with duct tape, finishing the walls, etc. Thank goodness for friends!
Rob consults with TOM (our mentor and friend at Dancing Bear Farm)
Rolling out the plastic.
Big gap here while we folded the plastic in two and hoisted it over the hoophouse frame. No picture taking possible! Luckily it was a calm day.
Plastic is essentially in place. Phew.
Newest farm member Linnie and former farm intern Heather survey the hoophouse.
Helper Sam.
The new inside view.
A few days later, Robin tilled inside the hoophouse. (mid December)
Plastic snugged down for the winter.
Designer, foreman and construction crew, Robin.
Up and running.
Plastic puffed out by air blown between the the double walls.
Beds laid out and prepped for planting. (Looking west.) So far I have planted sorrel, daffodils, dahlias, glads. Kale, chard, kolrabi, and mustard greens started in the house to be transplanted in a few weeks.
Looking east. Resting and thinking area. Tool storage and later there will be a potting table.
My sons. Thank you for this wonderful gift, guys.