This Week on the Farm 5/13
The beginning of last week was cold and rainy, which prevented us from getting a lot of field work done. We spent some of our time working in the greenhouses fertilizing and moving plants to new locations to make room for new plantings. All of the summer and winter squash seedlings are looking good. They grow amazingly fast, especially compared to plants in the cabbage family. Later today I will already be moving them out of the germination greenhouse and down to the hoophouse. They no longer need to sit on heat tapes at night to promote root development, so we can make room for new plants that do need the heat tapes.
On Tuesday Tyler and I went to Dalton to pick up a running gear that had a new platform built on it. It pulled surprisingly well behind our little green truck. When we got home Tyler, Don, and I lifted one of the empty bulk tanks up onto the platform. We are going to need to install some blocks to keep the tank in place, but it looks like it will work perfectly to haul water into the other field. The platform looks so nice that we are planning on using it for a wagon on farm tours when we have events here at the farm.
We were able to get the areas around the asparagus, rhubarb, strawberrries, and raspberries rototilled to keep down some of the weeds. By next year we should be able to produce enough asparagus and rhubarb for all of our shares and until then we can rely on a neighboring farm for the asparagus.
The strawberries are starting to flower and so far almost all of the flowers are healthy. We were a little worried because of the frost we had a couple of weeks ago. Some of the buds were up when the frost hit, and we didn’t know if they would be killed. Tyler’s hard work getting the sprinklers up and running at three in the morning paid off and very few of the buds were damaged.
With all of the rain it has been very difficult to get out into the fields to do a lot of direct seeding. We were finally able to get the snow peas, sugar snap peas, carrots, green beans, yellow beans, arugula, and two types of radishes into the field. We also planted our second planting of spinach.
Our new six row seeder from Johnny’s works really well for planting lettuce and carrots. The different hoppers allow you to plant six rows two and a half inches apart, or four rows/three rows/two rows at different widths. Although the wet soil tends to collect on the back wheel, it was well worth the money to be able to plant that many rows at a specific distance.
Our second planting of celery finally got transplanted into four inch pots. We ran out of new four inch pots so we had to run into Sun Prairie to pick some up. When I got to the store the computers were down and they only could take cash or check. Since I had the check book on me I thought, “Great, this will work perfectly.” After waiting in line for ten to fifteen minutes I was finally at the checkout counter, only to realize that we had run out of checks and hadn’t put the new booklet into the cover. I had to drive back the next day to pick them up and when I got back to the farm I could finally transplant the celery.
If the weather stays warm and sunny we should be on track for our first delivery. If it is cold and wet like the rest of this spring we may either have a smaller box the first week, or we may need to push our first delivery date back a week. We will let you know by later this week what is going to happen. Enjoy the sunshine!