Tuesday, July 21, 2009

where did july go?!?

the past week has been a bit of a blur.
since my last post, visitors have come and gone; i was sick, very sick; our tomato crop (and that of the entire east coast... maybe the nation's) is very VERY sick; there has been sunshine; and there has been rain.

today, it RAINED. cold, wet, rain. at this point in july, the "summer", highs should be in the 80's, easy. today's high was 67. not quite sure what's going on with the weather, but as a day-to-day outside worker, i'm confused!

we did get some good sunshine last week, though, giving the crops a break from the rain... but also causing some heat overload and dehydration - at least i think that was what wreaked havoc on my system l
ast week, sending me from bed to toilet for a few days which meant no farming (or blogging). i'm much better now.

speaking of wreaking havoc... two words: late blight. if you haven't heard of it,
listen up! we were hoping to avoid this awful plague of plagues, but unfortunately, we've been hit.
we have pulled about 1/3 of our first-round tomato crop out of the ground and stuck the stricken plants in black plastic bags to sit in the sun and kill the viral spores. we are spraying copper to try to stop the spread and protect the plants that have yet to be infected. what a mess!

my mamma came to visit this past weekend. it was great to have a visitor to show around the farm (she also helped weed the beets on saturday!) and to hang out around town. i was still feeling a bit ill when she came on friday, but she brought soup and TLC. by the end of her visit, i felt great!

Friday, July 10, 2009

garlic in da (green) house!

saturday was a HUGE member work day, and a blast at that!
we pulled alllllllll of the garlic out of the fields and brought it into the greenhouse to start the curing process.
garlic is so fascinating (and yummy). it clones itself... so, plant a clove (just like the ones that you saute and add to your fave dish) then it sprouts and develops a bulb which becomes a head of garlic, which you then split up into cloves (just like the ones that you saute and add to your fave dish) then it sprouts and develops a bulb which becomes a head..... it is awesome!

fist full of berries

last night, creek, daniel, mr. moon, and i went berry picking... or at least tried. we hiked up part of the appalachian trail, where it runs through our area, to a spot known for berries. unfortunately (or rather, fortunately) we were too early. they weren't completely ripe, yet. so we are going to return next week with hopes of bigger bounties.

creek was eager, though, and still got a good bunch of blue ones!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

green teens are multicolored

the greenteens were on-farm today, doing awesome things. they harvested garlic, weeded, and painted fantastic plywood sheets that will be later used for a farmer-habitat-shed-thing. there is an artist in nearby Coldspring that creates and fabricates these fabulous structures as artist's spaces... and now he is building two for Common Ground Farm as farmer's spaces.

examples of his previous work:

a preview of what the teens painted:

these painted 4'x4' pieces of plywood will be cut up into smaller sections and attached to the outside of the 'shed'... i can't wait to see the final result!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

this morning was epic

tim has mentioned many a time that in aspen, when conditions are just perfect for snow play, an 'epic' flag is hoisted to alert everyone to get out and play. if we had such a flag at the farm, i would have surely hoisted it this morning.

today, as is every tuesday, was a harvest day. we had our usual helpful members out to volunteer and we had the added help from the greenteens. at peak, we had 27 people on the farm. 54 productive, working, helping hands! it was amazing to look out over the fields and see so many backs bent over in work, so many bowed heads, so much cooperative, community work!

Monday, July 6, 2009

monday is CRAFT-y

this week, we are hosting the Greenteens.
i spent the morning with a few eager local teens scraping out a couple month's worth of chicken doo from the inside and around the coop. i must say: i was impressed, while my station wasn't the most exciting or enticing, no one complained!

the afternoon sent me north to this week's CRAFT farm, Sister's Hill Farm, where we learned about mechanical cultivation (the use of tractors and machinery to weed and harvest)

Thursday, July 2, 2009

walking the line

monday night was the weekly CRAFT meeting for area interns. we met at Four Winds Farm, a no-till farm near new paltz. there were many notables at this farm... ducks, cows, compost, even a complete rainbow was in attendance.

one of the interesting crops was the dutch walking onion. these are really giant scallions, you eat the green part. but the roots/seeds are the walking part. once the greens grow large enough, little clusters grow at the tip. these little purple bulb clusters cause the plant to bend forward, closer to the ground, then the bulbs plant themselves and sprout up a new plant... so the crop walks along growing and planting itself. pretty neat.