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June 17, 2018
Brief Heat Wave
Notes From The Field
By Derek McGeehan
Honeybee on flowering greens (arugula, mustard, raab) that decided to flower before we were able to harvest all of them.
Predictably the pendulum swings the other way: sun, wind, heat, and dry conditions are here. Irrigation has been turned back on and needs to be double checked and fixed since it hasn't been used for more than a month. Summer officially commences this week according to some folks and daylight breaks around 5am now, waking me up on Father's Day, a Sunday, an 'off day'. I get out the door by 6am, hop on the tractor, and resume where I left off yesterday afternoon around 4pm chiseling (primary tillage) various fields that have been resting this season until now. Before chiseling, compost was spread for about 6 hours yesterday, invigorating fields that will accept our fall crops like broccoli, cauliflower, leeks, and celeriac. Prior to adding compost cover crops were mowed.
The ground hasn't been this dry since...October? So, we are already thinking/always thinking months ahead because ground can't just be made ready overnight, unless maybe one uses a rototiller, but we don't because we like to make things harder for ourselves. Or, perhaps, we like to think that by not using one we're preserving the integrity of the soil and allowing our farm to be more 'sustainable' by improving soil chemistry, biology, and physical properties by using 'reduced tillage' techniques. We also like to prepare soil for planting into in stages to allow weeds to germinate then be killed by subsequent passes with the tractor. A typical ready bed is a month in the making.
Back to food: additional spring crops will be on their way out of shares after this week and early summer crops will trickle into the pick up room. Romaine, kale, escarole, radicchio, and endive will be absent until the fall. Celery, fennel, zucchini (green and yellow), and cucumbers should arrive this week. Cabbage, scallions, and outdoor beets should be ready next week. A few weeks later we'll welcome fresh garlic, tomatoes, peppers, and eggplant.
Thanks for growing with us.