Early August Photo Tour of the Food Farm

It’s been warm and I’ve either been slacking on the photos or more focused on the work – depending on how one looks at it. Regardless, the farm is lush and full of foliage!

 

DSC_0365

With the warm temperatures and lack of precipitation the irrigation equipment can be spotted all over the Farm.

With our high temeratures and lack of percipitation this irrigation equipment has been spotted all over the farm the last couple of weeks.

.

Our first planting of carrots will be ready to harvest this week!

Our first planting of carrots

Our Hot Wax Peppers are loaded and have begun to be harvested.

Our Hot Wax peppers

.

Green Cabbage Glamour Shot

DSC_0370

The Pumpkins with Sweet Corn

Pumpkins with sweet corn

The Leeks are coming along nicely.

Our Leeks our coming along nicely

Cucumbers growing in our big greenhouse

Cucumbers growing in our big greenhouse

Basil in the permanent greenhouse.

.Basil in our permanent greenhouse

Greenhouse Tomato variety called Juliet…

Greenhouse Tomato variety Juilet

and our 8th and last planting of Broccoli will be ready to plant in the field this week.

Our 8th and last planting of Broccoli will be ready to plant in the field this week.

Challenge Accepted!

This time of year I am always getting asked, “So are you about done at the farm?” or “Everything is pretty much done, right?” Well people, I will tell you what I tell them. It feels like we are just starting and getting cranked up for a whirlwind of extreme harvest. I feel like this big end of the season push is what I have been training for physically all season.

Yesterday began the first week of our transition into what I call “the end of season push”. We are now able to use a whole day’s worth of time dedicated to harvesting and packing summer shares towards filling up our root cellar.

With the predicted weather, we have decided this week that we are going to start with the potatoes. Our first planting looked great and was harvested as needed for shares and our wholesale orders. As we began unearthing our second planting we started crunching the numbers. We are predicting 20 tons of potatoes this year!

Janaki has charged this year’s staff with the challenge of harvesting 20 ton of potatoes this week! We worked out all the glitches in the new machinery yesterday and we are ready to accept this challenge.

Stay tuned as I post a photo journal of our week out in the field and keep you updated with our endeavor.

For the crew,

Jeanne

image

End of July Photo Tour of the Farm

In the peak of the season we find ourselves extremely busy. Here is a look at what is happening at the farm right now.

image

Our greenhouse tomatoes are just beginning to ripen.

image

Greenhouse cucumbers are as lush as ever!

image

Basil is starting to mature.

image

The first planting of potatoes are in blossom and flourishing.

image

The leeks are ready to be hilled and this year's garlic is very promising.

image

The fifth and sixth planting of Brassica.

image

The squash are starting to vine out and blossom.

As always we hope this finds you all well and stay tuned for more updates as the farm season progresses.

For the farm crew,
Jeanne

My Thoughts While Holding onto the Last Remnants of Fall

Image

CAM00064

A few days of sunshine and warmth have been interspersed with the quickly approaching cold weather of winter. Luckily enough, volunteers and the work crew at the Food Farm worked together and got all our veggies in the root cellar for the 2013 season. To me, it is almost mind boggling how this happened, but after careful reflection I believe it was due to hard work, tactical strategic planning, and the dedication of steadfast, committed individuals that made this all come together to make something so bountiful and successful.

eyeemfiltered1384518533291IMG_0842[1]eyeemfiltered1384518546069

 

 

 

 

As we clear and prepare the farm for slumber, I find it a beautiful and chilly experience that leaves my hands numb from the frost and ice that is forming. This last week we were taking down trellis that once supported strong healthy vines and plants. As we pulled out stakes, cut twine, and wrapped trellises- my feet crunched through dried basil- a simple pleasure of the smell wafted through the greenhouse.  As we finish for the season we are beginning to delve into the depths of thoughts of what we want for the seasons to come. I know my hands have thoroughly loved being covered with dirt and it had begun to seep into the cracks of my fingers from working, but I can tell with the change in work, the dirt is fading.

 

CAM00125CAM00177

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When I am out taking care of the turkeys I am coming face to face with the remembrance that their slaughter is near. There is nothing more intense than to see the animals you have raised and cared for being taken from their building and knowing shortly they will take their last breath. As sad of an experience as it is, I feel it is such a beautiful thing to be exposed to the raw and unfiltered experience of seeing where one’s food comes from. It is quite a powerful experience.

 

 

eyeemfiltered1384518495723

As the sun began to set at the farm today, I looked through bright (some almost barren) and icy fields that are holding on to the last remnants of fall with the sky turning to brilliant shades of pink and orange and it makes the whole experience feel so surreal. There are moments in my life where I am utterly blown away by my surroundings and it can almost leave me breathless. This was one of them.

wpid-eyeemfiltered1384518574201.jpg

On Weeding and Summer’s Progress

Hello everyone,

I’m sorry it took us so long to update our blog… you know how summer can get. Between all the weeding that needs to get done, the swift increase in harvests, and with all the other things that summer entails, we haven’t been the best communicators lately. Shorter updates are posted more often at facebook.com/pages/Food-Farm/86869408561 for those who are interested.

When I saw the tomatoes starting to ripen this week I began to get the sense that we are about to enter the height of the season.  The delivery boxes are loaded and then I realized we are half way done with our summer share deliveries! Now that it is halfway through the season, I guess it is a good time to reflect and I guess it also means some of us on the farm should start to consider what we will be doing over the winter. Eeek!

This year’s crops have been a spin of the roulette being so variable in production. We had a poor stand of peas, and the tomatoes are abundant, but are ripening late this year. The zucchini are behind schedule and the squash are slow growing. We have also lost a lot of our storage potatoes.

On the flip side, as I am sure a lot of you may have noticed, the broccoli has been fantastic, abundant, and large! The cauliflower has been following right along. The first planting of potaoes are large and we’ll start sending them soon. The peppers are moving right along and the carrots are promising. I am definitely not seeing as much asters yellow as last year.

We are all excited to start to harvest our onions. Our early variety should be in our delivery shares soon and our storage crop has about another 3 weeks until harvest. The garlic should be coming out of the ground to cure soon. John pulled a couple last night to check on their progress and they look and smell fantastic!

While weeding and thinning last night I just had to take a moment to look behind me. I realized sometimes we only see the weeds in front of us and as you’re weeding, all you see is all of the millions of weeds in front of you that still need to be weeded, and you feel like a) it’ll never end and b) that you haven’t made much progress.

However, if you look behind you, you see all that you’ve done so far and how far you have come. It is quite impressive.

This season has been kind of like that for me. During the farming season there is always going to be weeds in front of us and there will always be more to do. It can be completely overwhelming, but sometimes all it takes is just a moment to glance back from time to time,  to realize how far we’ve come. Thank you for all your support.

Fresh Foliage and a Battery Operated Tractor

I really do enjoy this time of year as the foliage looks so fresh and full of promise!  I always find it far easier to appreciate the early stages of plant development during Spring. The beauty of the foliage is so obvious at this time of the year; I am reeling in amazement at how differently things can look so quickly!

It is truly astounding how the greenhouses can feel empty one moment and overwhelmingly full the next. The permanent greenhouse is loaded with a few different types of lettuce, cucumbers, carrots, beets, and spinach.

The tomato tunnel is also beginning to fill out with both the first and second planting of tomatoes in the ground. The third and last planting of greenhouse tomatoes should be in by early next week.

Our transplant greenhouse is pretty much completely full with all of our pepper, outside tomato, leek, fourth and fifth planting of brassica, and newly germinated squash plants.

 John thought it wouldn’t hurt to mention that there should be roughly 100 extra greenhouse tomato plants for sale if anybody is looking to fill out their own greenhouse with our choice variety that is bred for prolific production and does very well in our climate.

CAM00247CAM00239CAM00249

Since the snow has melted, we have been able to work the ground and as of now have three plantings of brassica in and under row cover in the field. In other fields we have early potatoes, as well as onions, peas, and the first planting of carrots and kale.CAM00275

With the cold weather, rain, and clouds, the plants are small and could definitely use some more sunshine. Since we’ve been unable to “get in the field” there has been time to work on more projects! One of them has been converting one of the tractors to electric. By taking off the motor we are taking another step in becoming a more sustainable farm and putting the solar panels’ energy to good use.

The chickens are braving the weather and to my excitement their replacements as well as this season’s meat birds have arrived!

IMG_20130522_173958IMG_20130522_174126CHICK

 

 

 

So, all we need now is warm weather, a nice breeze, lots of sunshine, and moderate rainfall and the season should be incredible.

For the farm crew,

Jeanne