|I wish our spinach always looked this good|
What’s in the share:
- Salad Turnips
- Garlic Scapes
- Bok Choi
- PYO peas
- PYO Parsley
New this week- Some combination of summer squash, broccoli and cabbage may be available this week depending on what’s ripe out there. PYO Basil will also be available this week. To keep basil health and productive for as long as possible remember to cut only the top 1/4th to 1/3 of the plant and cut above leaf nodes where side shoots will develop. If the mood strikes, feel free to pull out a few weeds.
Updates from the field
|Sorgum, oats and innoculated soybean seeds|
|Seed in the hoppers|
We spent a lot of time last week on the tractors trying to stay on top of the weeds although with 60+ year old equipment it sometimes feels as if we spend as much time under the tractors as on them. I did finally manage to seed cover crop in our fallow field using the Brillion seeder. The Brillion is a tool I haven’t had much experience with yet so we’ll have to wait and see if I got the seeding rate right for a good strong stand of cover crop. I put down a mix of sorgum sudan grass for weed suppression and high carbon yield, soybeans for a fast canopy and nitrogen fixing and oats because oat seed is cheap and it’s nice to have a diverse cover crop mix. The sudan grass and the soybeans will die after the first hard frost and the oats will winter kill leaving a nice mulch on top of the soil over the winter which will (hopefully) be very easy to break down and incorporate into the soil next spring.
Now that most of our large transplanting pushes are out of the way (until fall broccoli, cabbage, brussel sprouts etc.) we need to focus on crop maintenance. Last week we managed to lay landscape fabric down in the driving rows between our first succession of water melon. This step really has been crucial to our success in growing melons for the last few seasons. We also got a head start on tomato trellising by pounding in most of our tomato stakes. Usually this doesn’t happen until the tomatoes are unmanageably leggy and tangled. Hopefully we’ll be able to stay on top of the trellising this season. At the beginning of last week we removed the insect barrier from our eggplant. Many of you may remember the abysmal eggplant yields of last year caused by a near biblical level plague of potato bugs. Using a light weight frost cloth we hoped to keep those nasty critters at bay. The measure has been a modest success. Although it has been fun to watch the potato beetles scuttling around confused and hungry, the frost cloth had the unintended consequence of providing a safe haven for a family of meadow mice who developed a taste for young eggplant stems and leaves. Plenty of eggplant survived and it should be a better season for eggplant. Now that the frost cloth is gone, Mergatroyd has been busy restoring the natural balance for which we are extremely grateful. If you see him in the fields be sure to give him a salute and thank him for his service to the farm.