Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Talk to your kids...

This was at the bottom of an email from our Tamworth Farmer's Market Managers... 1 in 5?! I hope the numbers are that good! Love it.

Grow peas grow

Despite some SERIOUS aphid pressure and a few unheated nights in the 19 degree region, the peas that were planted on March 5th have made great strides for the sky... or at least up out of the soil!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

A new tool!

I have a running list of tools that I love and hope to one day add to my arsenal. 
Last week I fell in love with a new one (well, new to me, anyway): the broadfork.

I borrowed one from a friend to work on our asparagus patch which was completely over run with quack grass ('round here it's witch grass). The grass was suffocating the asparagus and needed to be removed. The broad fork made really quick work of the task. *okay, I had some help from lots of little hands to actually pull the grass out... but without the use of the broadfork to loosen the soil up - forget it!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Turning 80 in March

I cannot get over what this week's forecast looks like:

Sunscreen? Check!
Tanktop? Check!
Method for watering seedlings? Check!
New England in mid-March? ::record scratches:: Say "what"?!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Helping Hands

The greenhouse is warming up... and heating up... and filling up! 
I have been busy seeding onions, leeks, scallions, lettuce, spinach, kale, kohlrabi, beets, and more! All of these little guys are pretty cold hardy, and with warm nights (staying above 32 is warm!) and even warmer days, we have been able to conserve energy and not run the heater - hooray!

Lots of people are excited about the coming spring, and many have come in to get dirty with me. Yesterday, a few students came out to help during their science class.
Fenton is making soil blocks for me to seed beets into while Devon, Tiffany and Mark shell beans (yes, there are STILL beans to shell!) We will be using these beans as seed this season and will also distribute dried beans to our Spring CSA members. 

Thanks, everyone!

Monday, March 12, 2012

pick your hose, not your nose

Another gorgeous day! I am so torn between being completely elated with the weather, being super bummed about what this means for sugaring season, and spinning in circles trying to keep myself from starting too many seedlings NOW. (It is really too early on the calendar, starting some things now would mean certain death because I might not get them into the ground. The danger of frost is too great)
All of this sunshine and heat means draggin' hose all over the place to keep the high tunnel watered. Literally hundreds of feet of hose get dragged from the school - where there is a frost-free hydrant; across the road - where cars slowly and carefully drive OVER the hose; through one of the fields - muddy with recent snow melt; to the high tunnel. Lather, rinse, repeat every other day. I truly do LOVE what I do.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

snowy greens

A March harvest of greens from the high tunnel for tomorrow's Farmer's Table Lunch.
It was 80+ degrees inside the tunnel today - tshirt weather for sure! But there is still a good coating of white on the ground outside...


Tuesday, March 6, 2012


I don’t think I can come up with a good excuse as to why my last post was 15 weeks ago! (though, after proof-reading this, I think the excuse is here somewhere)
Seeing as how it is now the first week of March and I am back in the saddle of early spring greenhouse work, it is time to start ‘er up again.

Here is a *brief* recap of the past few months - with photos!

The winter has been a busy one. I seeded the high tunnel way back in November with greens and such. By mid December, I had food growing in earnest and was able to harvest well into January until sub-zero temps put all growing to a halt. These photos were taken December 15th:
The low temps, however, did not kill the plants... So, just about 3 weeks ago, everything thawed out and started to perk back up. Longer days and somewhat higher temps have made the high tunnel green again. This week brings a big harvest for the Thursday lunch crowd at the school and there will be a cooking class here on March 17 that will also be using our high tunnel greens. I am currently getting in there to seed for the spring - peas please... These photos were taken March 5th!
What else... the main things keeping me busy these past few months have been kids, travel, and fish.

I stumbled into childcare around Thanksgiving and have been pretty steady ever since. Having not babysat since I was in 
high school, I was a little surprised how quickly I adjusted to a different pace of life. Caring for 4 different kids (not all at the same time - oiy!) all under the age of 6 has definitely given me a lot of perspective! Of course, being a farmer and a foodie... much of what we do together is EAT! (yes that is macaroni on pizza  - both of which are gluten free!)
Pat is settling well into Vermont life.
Back in November, Dan came up to hep with the settle (read: pick out Victorian furniture?!) Dan and I also took a spin around Lake Bomoseen in a pair of kayaks!
We are once again doing a back-and-forth style of dating. That doesn’t stop us from packing up and heading out on adventures together, though! Christmas + New Years took us to the Mid-Atlantic to see family and friends.
And February took us on a whirlwind trip out to LA - via Amtrak from Boston to DC (not on purpose!) then a flight to LA. 30+ hours of travel for <30 hours of California time. WORTH IT!
Go fish... in December I took on a fish ‘business’ from a friend of mine. I wouldn’t quite call myself a monger - okay, I might call myself a monger form time to time, but I don’t think I actually qualify! I sold some fish at a winter market in December. I had to rely on YouTube to teach me how to cut HUGE slabs of swordfish and Tuna into steaks, but it worked! And in January started up a fish “CSA”. Or is it CSF?! Either way I am now doing 6-week rounds of weekly fish shares for $60. That’s $10 per week and it is as fresh as fresh can be. Right out of Portland, ME; I only choose local, wild-caught fish; it is awesome. I have been enjoying a weekly catch and have been providing such to over 30 families! We’ve gotten everything form Haddock to Pollock, shrimp to clams!
Phew! That mostly sums it up. From here on out I'll be getting back into regular posting. Stay tuned!