June is still heavy planting time for us, it ushers in the beginning of harvesting and distribution, chickens and turkeys aren't all chicks anymore, deer and other pests are figuring out that we run a smorgasbord AND the weeds begin to grow with a vengeance. In short - everything needs to be done/dealt with yesterday (or maybe last week). Add in weather that throws a few hurdles in front of field work and you have a neat maze of tasks to navigate.
Here is a quick farm report for the idly curious, mildly interested and/or intensely absorbed in the doings of the Genuine Faux Farm:
- We're a few square (9 bundles) of shingles away from finishing the last side of the roof on one of our outbuildings. The goal is to finish before July 4 - which would be the one-year anniversary after starting this project. Actually, we're getting up tomorrow to see how far we can get. Here's hoping.
- Crop damage. We'll know better in a couple more days. In general, plants survived the maelstrom. Any pea flowers that were set are gone and the plants are working on recovery right now. Most pepper/eggplant/tomato plants are standing back up. The Thursday CSA members can attest that the lettuce didn't look as bad as we first reported they might look. However, they didn't see the worst of them that we left in the field to grow through the damaged outer leaves. They should work it out just fine.
- We're still finding odd pieces of things in weird places on the farm after the heavy winds on Tuesday. Found a clothes pin halfway to the barn (probably 100 feet from its origin). Pouuff!
- Things you may not know you can do - like freeze melon. Cube the melon, throw in a freezer bag and bring it out for smoothies later. Works great. Lemonade with melon is tonight's treat. yum. Yes, we do grow melon for the CSA. Here's hoping for a fantabulous crop.
- All but seven rows of tomatoes are caged. The remaining seven rows will be trellised in other fashions. yep, on the to do list for the next couple days. Along with trellising the climbing peas before they get too big to tame.
- We've been using a stainless steal sink/counter and a pop up tent to provide us with a more efficient packing area. It speeds the process of cleaning and prepping immensely and makes everyone working on the product a bit happier - always a good thing. Dad F also helped put the 16 foot stainless counter with drain up near another building to help in cleaning the upcoming cucumber, summer squash and zucchini crops.
- We need Dad Z to come back down and mow the yard again! Ok, ok. We'll do it. But thanks for mowing last week!
- The flower beds around the house look far better than they did prior to a makeover started by Mom Z's weeding. The truckload of mulch we picked up and spread didn't go nearly as far as we might have liked. But, we were aware it wouldn't be enough.
- Swiss chard and beets. Write this down. They are looking good! Potatoes were looking good prior to the storm and appear to have bounced back after. So, they are fine. Now, name three crops that had a bad year with us last year....what? You don't know? Reread this bullet point and guess again!
- Arugula and spinach are done until fall. We will till the current rows under since they are simply going to bolt after this last cutting due to the warm weather. If you don't like either of these and are in the CSA - I'm sure you are celebrating. But, before you go to far - we'll replant them for a fall crop to be harvested in late September and October!
- Lettuce progression: The first lettuce of the year has been the Crispmint romaine. T suggests that Crispmint just tastes better and better as you work toward the center. The next lettuce to mature has been Bronze Arrowhead - a leaf lettuce. This one works well with summer fruits. It has a much softer texture and a mild taste. People with T's palate will love Crispmint. If they have R's palate they will like the Bronze Arrowhead better. Up next will be Amish Dear Tongue - a crisphead type. Going in soon are Grandpa Admire's, Forellenschus and Reine des Glaces.