Thursday, August 30, 2012

Once in a Blue Moon...

It's starting to feel like I only get a chance to write a blog once in a blue moon...which we'll actually have for real Friday night! Much has happened since my last, rather downtrodden, blog post. First off, there has been rain :) And the weather cooled down a bit, though the next few days are forecast to be scorchers. We're still irrigating regularly in the field, but after the big rainstorms from a few weeks ago, the field looks much perkier! Many crops have been set back by around 3-4 weeks, but hopefully September will be a month with lots of veggies to harvest.

I'm feeling much less stressed about this season, as the last couple weeks have had full vegetable packages, with extras to start making up for the lack in the drought weeks. The beans are starting to come into full production, the chard is getting lush, and the tomatoes are ripening nicely. At first, most of the tomatoes were really cracked and scarred, but the newer ones ripening now are looking much better. And of course, the Sun Sugar tomatoes are being the stars I've come to count on. We also haven't found any more tomato horn worms lately...knock on wood.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure the cucurbits (zucchinis, cucumbers, winter squash, pumpkins) will end up producing much at all this season, though I still have my fingers crossed. The potatoes so far have yielded about 1/4 of last year's, and the sweet corn might be a write off. The edamame is late to ripen, but the pods are set and filling right now so I hope they're harvestable this coming week or the next.

Fall salad, spinach & bok choy greens have been seeded so I hope they'll come in well for packages in late September and October. The various brassicas (kale, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, etc.) look to be recovering from flea beetle now, so I'll have to see if anything is harvestable from them by late September/October.

I had a cover crop seeding party with my neighbours last Friday that saw 7 people hand seed just over 2 acres with barley, oats & white clover in about half an hour. It rained a tiny bit on Monday which I hoped would be enough to germinate the seeding, but now I'm hoping that more rain will be coming soon...before various birds and rodents eat up the seeds ;P

Overall, things are looking up. Having more vegetables to harvest means more work, but having that work has definitely raised my energy levels and spirits! Just in time too as the farm's open house is this Sunday :)

This long weekend is going to be a crazy one as I'll be at the Greenbelt Harvest Picnic at Christie Lake on Saturday with a farmer's market stall. I'm mostly looking forward to the concert lineup (with Feist, Daniel Lanois, Emmylou Harris, Sarah Harmer, etc.), but if the event is anything like last year's, it will be really lovely and relaxing and many vegetables will be sold. I hope to get back to the farm after the event by around 2 am...and then finish prepping for the open house around 9/10 am. Since we knew that this weekend would be crazy, Jeremy and I have been slowly sprucing up various parts of the farm over the past couple weeks in preparation. Lots of mowing, thistle cutting and barn sweeping has been going on.

Now I just have to think of some appropriate Blue Moon activity for tomorrow...perhaps the fennel can finally get weeded ;P