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This Week on the Farm 6/12
Our delivery season has finally started! We are so excited to be in our third year of production. This year we have added four more pick-up sites!
We would like to take this opportunity to thank the following businesses for allowing us to have pick-ups at their awesome sites: Virent, Inc. (Madison), Monty’s Blue Plate Diner (Madison), J.J. Keller & Associates, Inc. (Neenah), SCA Tissue (Neenah), and Harmony Café (Green Bay)! Thank you for supporting a small farm and promoting healthy eating for your employee’s and/or community members!!!
Our first season we started out with 30 shares and provided food for close to 50 families. This year we have over 70 shares and are feeding 165 families!! We hope that all of you are able to stop by the farm this season for one of our events, or just to take a tour. Our goal is to know all of our members and for you to get to know us!
On to farm news. We did get a little bit of rain on Monday morning, which helped both the veggies and the weeds. Before Monday, it hadn’t rained in over two weeks and we haven’t had a rain of any significance in even longer. We have been hauling water out to both of our fields to irrigate with our over head sprinklers.
We use the overhead impact sprinklers and garden hoses because they are cheaper to install than drip tape or a more permanent pipe irrigation system. Normally we don’t need to irrigate very often, so it makes sense to use the sprinklers. This season has been an exception. Tyler has spent more time hauling water this week than he has spent doing any thing else.
We have decided that each year we are going to add more drip tape to cover at least one more field. Drip tape is a more direct method of irrigating and there is less water loss due to evaporation compared to overhead irrigation. The spread of disease is also reduced because you don’t have water molecules splashing and transferring bacteria or fungal spores to other plants.
This year our lettuce, carrots, parsnips, celery, and herbs are irrigated using drip tape. Next year we want to have our spinach, arugula, beets, radishes, rutabagas, Swiss chard, kale, etc. under drip tape as well. We think this will improve germination and production. This year those crops were planted in a very sandy location, and they could have used a lot more water.
Other than hauling water, we have been busy weeding, planting the rest of our fields, weeding, picking Colorado Potato Beetles, and did I mention weeding? We do not plant anything in a plastic mulch, so we spend a lot of time weeding by hand or by mechanical methods. We would rather pay our high school workers to weed than add more plastic to the landfill.
Your boxes this week contain ten different herbs for you to plant in your yard or in a container on your kitchen counter. We will give out herbs occasionally in the boxes, but this way you can flavor your food all season with delicious home grown herbs. They will grow for a little bit longer in the packs they are in now, but we recommend that you do transplant them to a larger pot in order to get maximum growth. Make sure to water them carefully over the next couple of weeks as they get established in their new home.