Sunday, April 6, 2008

Spring has Sprung

It’s been awhile since the last blog, and there’s lots of catching up to do. A brief summery of what’s been going on at and around the farm in the last 3 weeks includes:
  • A quite successful and fun sign-up meeting on March 30th
  • The arrival of our new intern Jenn Baughman on March 31st
  • A farm tour as a part of the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) 20th anniversary conference that was at the Weston Crown Center the last week of March.
  • A visit by fellow member and Channel 9 newsman Mike Flink to do a story on community farming
  • Rebecca’s birthday
  • Rocky’s first tooth

We would like to extend many thanks to the Core Group for organizing the signup meeting. We think it was enjoyed by all. The blurriness of the picture may be due more to the whirl of activity than a shaky hand.

We also have been visited by several William Jewell students who are each doing 15 hours of service learning work at the farm as a part of their Ecology of Food course. We are friends with the instructor Paul Klawinski, who we’ve known since our first market days in Liberty in 2003. We’ll expound on the class in future blogs. We are happy to be a part of this unique science class. That’s two of them helping Rebecca uncover the strawberries so the soil can warm up and their leaves can catch the sun.

Greenhouse and field work have been on the list of things to do too. The greenhouse is emptying of its Spring transplants, as they go to cold frame to “harden off”. Much of the cabbage, broccoli, asian greens lettuce, cilantro, and onions have made it to the fields. With the Spring crops heading out, the greenhouse is filling with summer ones, tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, basil, and soon summer squash and cucumbers.

We have also seeded our first batches of peas, beets, carrots, turnips and radishes. We will continue this week to plant the potato crop. We are halfway done. We also seeded 100 lbs of wheat and 25 lb of crown vetch as a cover crop in many of our empty beds.

The plants look as healthy as they ever have this year and we are very happy. We are not sure if it is our source of compost, the extra worm castings, or adding EM (effective microorganisms) to the greenhouse water. While it probably isn’t any one thing, we feel adding “good” bacteria to our system can only help.

We hope to get some more good planting in this week and will have time to keep the membership posted more often. In the meantime we have cleaned out our root cellar and larder and found a nice stash of carrots, beets, celeriac, potatoes, turnips, radishes, onions and garlic. We also found our cabbage kept well this year in the cooler, and a delicious slaw has been in order lately.

You can do the same thing at home if you have a basement, garage or other room that stays cool but above freezing for the winter. Simply layer your carrots, beets or other roots in sand, and set them in a dark area (or cover them). You'll find the carrots you put away in November may actually be more sweet and tender in March and April.

And finally a video, simply because we can. Rebecca planting with the G.


jericho farmer said...

Great video addition to the blog!

We are setting up our G with a 3 row planet jr. Should be using it within the next week. Can you get a closeup pic of how they are attached to the toolbar?

Good luck with your growing season!


Judy Conyers said...

Go Rebecca!