Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Late October Farm Doings

It's been a few weeks since our last farm report.  So, I've heard it is time to do another one.

There is a mistaken perception that we are not growing anything by the time we hit late October.  But, we do have lettuce, greens, turnips, radish, chard, kale and other crops going.  And, believe it or not, we still have green beans to pick in the high tunnel.  The dry weather has slowed growth, so we'll be doing a little watering the next few days to encourage it.  We may even do some low tunnels on some of the lettuce.

We're always a bit amazed by how quiet the farm gets and how much easier daily chores become once the ducks, broilers and turkeys all take their trips to the park.  It's true, we do have layers in two places right now - and there is still lots of work to do to get them ready for Winter.  But, it is nice to be able to get chores done in 15 minutes in the evening.  Mornings are a longer, of course.  On another front, there are still ducks and turkeys available for purchase.  Spread the word.

Fall CSA
Our extended season CSA filled up, and for that we are grateful.  The first distribution went reasonably well.  It was nice to surprise everyone with a some nice tomatoes, green beans and zucchini/summer squash.  A last taste of summer.

Regular Season CSA
The regular season CSA is done and we are now taking reservations for 2012.  Anyone who is interested may now reserve a spot.  Deposits are $25 to reserve a spot.  The website will be updated soon with the new application materials.  It's number 32 on my office I can get to this within ten days.  But, if you are anxious, you can print the 2011 application, cross out 2011 and replace it with 2012.  ( I am sooo clever that way!)

Many of our fields need to be cleaned up.  Some need to be chisel plowed, some need late cover crops.  But, we're still awaiting the return of the tractor to do some of the work.

The tractor is still out of our hands.  We opted to put in an electric start to improve reliability on the farm.  Unfortunately, that decision has resulted in a longer period of time without the tractor.  If it's not one thing...

Our focus is beginning to move here.  We need to complete a room for the hens in the Poultry Pavilion.  This includes a permanent fence for their pasture.  The barn needs to have everything moved away and out of it so it can be taken down.  We need to put a door up on the truck barn.  The thing about the impending cold season is it does tend to help one focus.  Alot of things just cannot happen at this point.

We are entering the season for presentations.  It looks like Rob is scheduled for an online Farminar in December.  We'll try to figure out what else is on tap and let everyone know.

Other Things That May or May Not Be of Interest...
  • Tammy's research class is heating up.  Every Fall she teaches this class and it includes breaking students into groups to do actual research projects.  It is at this point in the semester when everyone figures out there is some real work involved.  
  • Rob was coerced into being captain of one of the two U.S. teams in the Ticket to Ride Nation's Cup event.  So far, the team is 4-1 in the round robin and is in danger of making it to the playoffs.
  • Bree and HobNob, the house management staff (aka our indoor cats) reached their 1 year anniversary with us.  And, so far, we all still like each other enough to get along.  They have decided that Tammy is HobNob's human and Rob is Bree's human.  I don't think we had a choice.
  • Cubby, the farm management feline (FMF for short), is doing well.  Hunting has been good, as it is most Fall seasons on the farm.
  • We have a new barnyard co-manager.  Our prior manager, Bob the rooster, did not survive the Spring.  We're not sure who he argued with, but it was not successful.  As a result, Harold was promoted late Spring.  Since then, our new batch of chicks grew up to reveal another rooster in the flock.  Please welcome Fu.  He is a Barred Rock.  Why Fu?  Because it is fun to say and fun to rhyme with...and he's a Barred Rock.

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