Monday, November 18, 2013

greenhouse update

There aren't any new photos to share but I did do a quick inventory of what is growing in the greenhouse.  Most everything is still pretty small but hopefully there will be enough varieties for a green salad for thanksgiving.

There are currently gutters filling up the available hanging space.  When I started filling them up I took away the highest spots as i needed a ladder to reach and to see.  I have room for two or three more sets of chain slings east of the door.  In the slings are:

3 allstar mix
4 mizuna
1 claytonia
1 green romaine
1 red romaine

I have in tubs:
1 green romaine
2 kale
2 pac choi
2 vitamin green

5 pots of radishes

1 planter of collards

And transplants in cups:
32 bilko
30 Tokyo becana
34 Tatsoi
25 arugula
21 golden frill

and lots of seeds on the germination mats


I was out doing a late check on the temperature in the greenhouse (it was 40° at 11 pm) so i took some pictures.

vitamin green

early and later plantings of pac choi


green romaine

radishes (back) collards (front)

Bilko transplants

Bilko, Tokyo Bekana, broccoli transplants

arugula, tatsoi, golden frill

seeds on the germination mat.

allstar mix



romaine green on top and red on bottom

Monday, November 11, 2013

greenhouse update

Tonight will be the coldest night of the fall so far with expected overnight lows to be 3°.  I think that I will probably need to check later to see what the temperatures are after dark.  In the meantime here are a few pictures of plants growing in the greenhouse.


all star salad mix


pak choi

lots of seedlings transplanted into cups

seedlings on the heat mat

there are six gutter planters hanging so far

And this is a couple pictures of the two piles of leaves that Lisa raked, bagged and saved for me. 

Mom hauled them over and now I get to put them to good use.  I will dump them out of the bags, run over them a couple times with the lawn mower and then pick them up and spread them in the walking rows between the raised beds and add them to the compost piles.  So excited.  Thanks, Lisa!!!

I checked on the kale that is growing in the potager.  It has been doing well with the colder weather and I have been picking some for Lisa and have been searching for recipes in which to use it while it is still good.  Anyway, I have been doing some research and found one site that says that kale will tolerate 10° so our predicted overnight 3° was making me a little nervous.  I decided to go out and pick a bunch and then cover the rest.  It was about five o'clock and about 20° when I went out to do this and I found the kale frozen.  It is stiff and breaks apart when touched.  I decided to pick some anyway and cover the rest.  When I brought it in the house and it almost instantly thawed.  I am going to watch how it reacts and consider picking the rest while it is still frozen and place it in the freezer if it looks like it is not going to recover.  I have found some awesome looking recipes that pair kale and butternut squash that I am hoping to try.  I am missing a couple of ingredients that I hope to remedy tomorrow at the grocery store and then look for some kale in upcoming recipes on my other blog, the farmstand cookbook.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

digging potatoes in the snow

Potato update

The title of this post is a little misleading.  We did get a little bit of snow and it was flurrying when I finished digging the last of the potatoes and now--a couple hours later--the ground has a light covering of the white stuff on it.  The last of the potatoes are dug from the cornfield garden.  There are a few in the potager and those will be retrieved tomorrow when the replacement box is installed and the potato towers dismantled.  Once that is done the only produce left will be the kale which is not minding the cool nights and continues to do well. 

Cornfield update

Tomorrow I have one potato trench left to fill in and then there will be 25 raised rows completed and ready for next season.  They have been seeded with oats for a cover crop and the earliest planted are about five inches tall.  There are a few more rows that have just sprouted and a few more that have not germinated yet.  I am hopeful that all will grow this fall but feel that those rows that haven't will germinate in the spring which works too. 

I am working to spread shredded leaves in the walking spaces between the rows.  We had a big wind from the south a few days ago and it plastered every leaf in the orchard up against the pasture fence.  Since there were so many collected there it was easy to mow over them and blow them into windrows to be picked up and spread in the garden.  It was a trick I learned from my dad who did the same with his yard and those leaves were  collected and hauled to the farm.  Lisa has also been generous with her bagged leaves.  Her newest additions are yet to be spread but that should happen tomorrow.

There is room for more eight or ten more raised rows at the west end of the garden where the vine crops were and if weather permits I will be trying to get that area made into raised rows yet this fall as well.  The north half of the garden where the corn grew has not received much attention and that will be on the fall list if the weather cooperates.  I hope to remove the corn stalks and stack them for eventual composting or feed them to the herd.  We will see if they are interested. 

Farmstand update

The farmstand made its way to the machine shed pulled by Dad's pickup.  Right now it is tucked inside the doors in the alleyway.  I plan to cap the ends of the roof and try to add an awning before it is tucked into a final spot for the winter.  Right now the tables in the trailer are ones from the greenhouse and those will go back.  I hope over the winter to get more tables ready that will stay in the farmstand and add display space along the two sides that can hold baskets or perhaps a cooler.   

The farmstand has been a lot of fun and it was sad to put it away for the winter.  It will be fun to tweak it over the winter.