Thursday, October 8, 2015

Autumn on the farm

It is autumn on the farm.  I am putting the garden to bed and 'putting up' a few jars of apple butter and tomatoes.  I still have tomatoes coming so I am hesitant to pull the plants.  I am still getting a few pole beans and peppers as well.  I am planting cover crops in the empty rows and trying to get straw spread on the walking spaces between the rows.  The garden was overtaken with weeds this year and so the rows and the walking spaces need to be weeded and I am hoping to get a bunch of it done before the snow flies. 

The greenhouse season is also starting up and I have been planting seeds for most of a month.  I started seeding in the house and putting the seedlings under lights because the greenhouse was still getting too hot on sunny days.  But now all of the winter plantings have been moved to the greenhouse.  On sunny days the fans have been able to keep it below 100 degrees in there and so far I have been able to not cook the new seedlings.  I am including a few pictures but it is hard to get a representative picture of plants that are only two inches tall.  There is more seeding to do and a lot of transplanting from the seed starting trays to the tubs.  In the past I have started all the seedlings in trays and then transplanted the baby plants into the gutter planters and the tubs.  This year I have tried seeding the gutters directly instead of transplanting and so far it seems to be working well.  All of our seeds are started on the warm mat and once they have germinated they are moved under lights and new seeds take their places on the mat.  Our mat holds four gutters or four trays at a time so it is a good way to spread out the seeding.  

The wedding party herbs are all in bigger pots and ready to move into the greenhouse once we run out of summer weather.  That is an experiment that I hope to be writing about in blog posts over the winter.

A lot of people rave about the colors of autumn and they are great but equally impressive are the smells of autumn.  Transplanting the sage and rosemary was heavenly.  Just brush up against them and they share their fragrance.  And then to come in the house from outside and smell the apples and spices cooking away in the crock pot making apple butter is great.  Of course there are some not so wonderful smells that happen on the farm in the fall too.  This time of year the goat buck is a little more stinky and one of the neighboring fields must have a new layer of turkey manure since my yard had that distinctive odor for a couple of days.

A little fall at the front door.
 A sampling of the baby crops in the greenhouse.  There are ten gutters hanging up in the chains and another three on the heat mat and a few more to plant once those germinate.

scarlet frill

 The arugula is one of five or six trays of seedlings that will eventually be transplanted into the tubs.  Some trays like the arugula are all the same variety.  Others like the one to the left just barely in the picture has two or four different varieties. 
 Just starting to transplant into the tubs. 
oops, blurry kale
   Happy fall!


  1. Fall on the farm sounds wonderful! I imagine that it must be a full sensory experience...and a lot of work, too. Love the color of your front door!

    1. Last summer we painted our house gray and the door gold. It had been white with a white door. My youngest helped with the color selection and I really like the colors too.