Saturday, May 30, 2009

24 Hour Day A Myth???

A Biodynamic Flowform. The water performs a figure 8 in each form as it flows. You Tube has several good videos of flowforms. Seeing is easier than trying to describe the process. This one was photographed at Kimberton CSA.

I think hours disappear like socks in the wash. Really. The week started, and poof, harvest day was upon me!

Monday, May 25, 2009

HOT and Sticky

Here is G9, short for Jeannine. She is an experienced farm intern and my friend. We met at a Pennsylvania Women In Agriculture business class. Out of the goodness of her heart she offered to come and help me with transplanting and weeding, all volunteer. G9 can do any task very fast, waaaay faster than I can. This potato bed got very weedy after the recent rains and she is making it look beautiful. Then a layer of straw will be added so we don't have to weed this bed again!

The weather is extreme. Why can't we just have a regular nice day? The past week it has been awful HOT and sticky. This kind of heat is not good for lettuces or peas or ME. I'll take 75 and dry. Today was particularly oppressive, with buckets of heat and humidity even after the sun disappeared.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Good Work Days

What a beautiful scene. This is my view while filling the water tank. A mother goose and her fluffy goslings have been taking regular outings on the pond, even venturing onto the meadow. That is the original spring house, with a new roof. Quite a hill to take a tumble if you are carrying milk pails. I think about how hard women had to labor to prepare the daily meals.
After the paper and fence were in place, a layer of wood chips are used to keep the paper from blowing and ripping. It also looks better. A friend helps Aaron, to make the job more enjoyable.
A shot of the green things. Temps went down to 35 degrees, other farms got hit with freezing. I tell you, not a good season so far. For CSA members, we are trying to get those little lettuces to grow. Tomorrow the forecast-77 degrees. This season is slow, slow, slow!

Finally the rye gets chopped. Daughter Alexandra stopped by to lend a hand, asking to try out the BCS with a Palladino flail mower. This is an excellent piece of machinery. It will mow and chop a 6 foot high cover crop simultaneously.

This is biodegradable paper mulch. We are experimenting with several weed control strategies. In the pic, electric net fencing is being laid out on top of the paper.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Market Opens

Paper or Plastic? or how about straw? In an effort to control weeds a mulch is used, but which one? Plasticulture is not my choice. This straw will be spread on potatoes, strawberries, rhubarb and other select crops to stem the troublemakers. Chickweed, and thistles are the worst offenders. Yes,yes I know-"a weed is simply a plant growing where it is not wanted". Well those guys are not welcome! This season a trial of biodegradeable paper mulch will be tested under the electric net fence. Weeds or vegetation touching an electric fence lowers the voltage.

Market opened today. A festive, family reunion atmosphere prevailed for vendors and customers. Hugs all around! Produce growers are having a delay in market attendance due to lousy spring weather. For me it was slim pickin's, literally.

Friday, May 8, 2009

A Dry Day

A potato plant. I think this one is Yukon Gold.
Flats are bustin'n at the seams. If it stays dry for a few more days they can all be comfy in the ground with plenty of room.
Aaaarrrrggghhh!!! Something is eating my veggies!
Rhubarb is up after 2 weeks.
Red Express Cabbage
Roc D'or beans are up and loving this heat.
Siberian and Lacinato Kale after weeding.
Rain makes stuff grow, including weeds. The potato bed on the left is full of unwanted weeds. After some work with the scuffle hoe the bed on the right is looking better.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


Yes, the plants want a drink but enough already! I can not get into or on the crop beds to plant, weed, or harvest. AArrrgh! The pic above shows a rhubarb root, incredibly ugly looking thing, which will transform into lucious red stalks. These stalks cooked with a bit of sugar make jams, pies and chutney known to make grown men swoon. No lie. Mixed fresh with sugar and fresh strawberries, placed just so in a finely crafted pie dough, dotted with real butter.........ooooh sends shivers up my spine. Mostly I use a butter crumb topping. I'll take the extra time to make lattice, lets that gorgeous red show through, for special occasions.