Here a Chick, There a Chick…

Ken has been perfecting his broody hen management this season.  The result has been several hatches of chicks.  At first he put them together, but it seemed the older ones were picking on the younger ones.  So now he has several small outside enclosures with chicken wire and fiberglass fence posts.     There are the tiny chicks               There are the chicks that a renegade hen hatched out …

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Harvest Newsletter

Greetings from the Garden!  This week’s CSA box has tomatoes, potatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, kohlrabi, onions, garlic, peppers, sweet corn, parsley, and basil. Field Notes.  The tsunami of tomatoes has crested; early varieties are about done.  Later varieties are still going strong.  It has been an interesting season – cooler nights meant later hot weather crops and heavy dew meant more work to prevent molds, fungus and blights.  Ken has moved up those seedlings pictured last …

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By Labor Day Pigs Become Hogs

The decades old expression here is, “By Labor Day the pigs become hogs.”  We have raised feeder pigs for decades.  They are a great help on a small farm.  Each year Ken has a tilling project so he grazes them sequentially.  On any given year they might expand a garden space, dig out the quack grass outside the garden, or clear a fence line.     They eat garden culls and many things people won’t …

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Harvest Newsletter

Greetings from the Garden!  This week’s CSA box has tomatoes, potatoes, onions, garlic, cucumber, zucchini, kohlrabi, lettuce, basil and parsley.   Field Notes.  People often wonder what I mean when I say nearly every week that planting continues.  Well this week I have a photo of several of the fall greens.  Ken finds that in August it is often easier to start greens indoors where he can regulate temperature and moisture.  Another advantage of transplanting …

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A Bit of Nostalgia as Blackberry Season and Summer Wane

Each year when I start picking blackberries I think of my maternal grandmother, Flora E. Patch.  When I knew her she was a farm wife.  She and my grandfather had a dairy farm in Vermont.  She grew up in a farm family and as a young single woman she taught school.  My grandfather was the older brother of one of her students.  After they married they lived in a small town and had a coal …

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Harvest Newsletter

Greetings from the Garden!  This week’s CSA box has tomatoes, potatoes, celery, lettuce, cucumber, zucchini, onions. garlic. kale, corn, basil, and apples       Field Notes.  Ken is getting the short season fall crops in now.  The long season fall crops are doing well.  He got the year’s compost mixed for next season.  And in his spare time it’s mowing, weeding, and harvesting.  Weeds that aren’t mowed will drop seeds for a new crop …

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Making Compost

Each season Ken makes compost. Each year he combines the winter chicken bedding with hay and straw and leaves and other organic matter that varies from year to year.  In the past he shoveled chicken bedding and shook out all the baled hay.  A few years back he purchased a manure spreader.  The manure spreader breaks clods, shakes out hay and mixes the components beautifully.   He loads the spreader, cuts the baling twine, and …

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Rye Update

The inside circle on the drive has changed a great deal.. Ken just mowed the rye he had planted late last season.         Last year during the spring Ken dug up the perennial flowers and I divided them and removed as many weeds as possible         Then he ran chickens through the area to scratch       Next he ran pigs through to dig it up     …

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Harvest Newsletter

Greetings from the Garden!  This week’s CSA box has tomatoes, potatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, onions, basil, beans, carrots, and parsley     Field Notes.  Planting, mulching, and harvesting continue.  As the days shorten this becomes more of a juggling act!  Ken picks several crops like tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, etc several times a week; that takes a chunk of time.  He spent part of Sunday making next year’s compost.   In the midst of all this I …

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Harvest Newsletter

Greetings from the Garden!  This week’s CSA box has tomatoes, potatoes, beets, chard, zucchini, cucumbers, green peppers, beans, Walla Walla sweet onions, and parsley.     Field Notes.  Ken has been transplanting fall crops.  We dug the garlic and it is curing on racks.  Ken keeps up with weekly tasks like tying up tomatoes. Fun fact: Daylight shortens three minutes each day during August.  Several cultures have a harvest holiday in August; In old Celtic …

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