Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Traditions Don't Die, They Just Look Different Each Year

Well, it seems like we might actually get a normal (ish) Spring this year.  Therefore, we will do something that is apparently normal for us.  We'll put a blog post out for you.

Anonymous Farmer Project Includes GFF in 2015

We have NO idea who that is.
The Genuine Faux Farm has been selected to be a participant in a new project called the Anonymous Farmer Project.  Since many people do not seem to place much importance on learning about where their food comes from, this project was created to reflect this common approach to food acquisition and consumption.  Photos were selected from those provided by participating farms and were placed on a calendar that can be found in the produce, fruit and meats section of many grocery stores throughout the nation.  In every case, the farmer's identity is obscured - providing the consumer with an excellent excuse for not knowing who grew the food they have purchased or how it was raised.

Romanesco Grows to Maturity Over Winter Months
In recent events on the farm, Rob and Tammy were treated to a fresh romanesco head from a forgotten plant in the basement of their farm.  As many of you might know, we start many of our plants in trays before transplanting them into the fields or the high tunnel.  Apparently, one of these trays was missed last fall and remained in the basement all Winter long.  As you might expect, most of the little plants simply died due to lack of water, sunlight and nutrients.  One plant was made of sterner stuff and managed to survive and even produced a head of romanesco.  We often joke that we should tell our production plants they are weeds, since weeds always seem to do so well on our farm.  Amazing what a little neglect can do.

We've got some swampland to sell you too!
Wild Turkey Infiltrates GFF Chicken Yard
Recent egg collection duties have resulted in finding some extremely large eggs in the hen area during the past couple of weeks.  The picture below shows a carton with mainly Xtra Large to Jumbo rated eggs.  The two eggs on the left go off the scale.
Now, those are some eggs!
Initially, we were under the impression that there should be a couple of bow legged birds wandering around the yard.  We've had big eggs in the past for short bursts of time and we just figured these hens started laying smaller eggs or went on strike after a while.  However, a recent early morning excursion may have provided us with a better explanation as we saw wild turkeys very near the hen pasture.  They were clearly looking quite guilty and were attempting to leave unnoticed.  Wild turkeys are smart birds and may have figured out how to get into the hen room and lay an egg or two.  However, we're still not sure how they re-latch the door on the way out.
Inadvertent Success Leads to New GFF Project
The 2014 season was an excellent clover year at the Genuine Faux Farm and throughout Iowa.  There were many reports of clover patches simply appearing where none had been before.  Clover is great for bees and native pollinators and, if you are Irish, can result in an increase in luck - or maybe just an increase in the time spent picking four leaf clovers.

Maybe clover in the yard isn't really that hard?
In any event, the random clover patch phenomenon has encouraged us to take on a new research project tracking random clover patch migration.  Current research is limited due to the increased use of herbicides that control leguminous plants, such as clover.  It is our contention that the migration patterns of the common, random clover patch may have something to do with the reduced Winter habitat for Monarchs in Mexico.  But, we're having trouble finding appropriate tranquilizer darts for clover so we can tag them properly.

Glowstick Art Ban Ignored on the Farm
Bremer County has recently had a number of incidents where persons wielding glow sticks have entered agricultural fields.  After talking to county officials, we learned that this activity has been banned.  Apparently, there were numerous reports of crop circles from local farmers that were traced back to these "Glowstick Events."

After noticing just such an event in a field less than a mile away from our farm, we decided to investigate and found out that participants were mostly starving artists looking for things to eat. One person, who wished to remain anonymous, bemoaned the fact that they had yet to find a field that contained anything that resembled food.  However, she did state that there were some really beautiful glow stick events that had been performed in a soybean field by Janesville.

Since GFF is about raising good, edible food, we arranged to have these starving artists visit our farm.  In return for some good food, they allowed us to take a photo or two of their performance.

Florist Invasion

If you have visited the farm, you might recall that there is a wooded area about three quarters of a mile from our property.  There is also an access road that goes around our property, then straight back to the woods in the North.  We often see people go back that way to hunt, but we have been seeing alot of traffic recently.  And, we don't believe there is an active hunting season at the moment.

Our curiosity was peaked when we noticed that the people driving the vehicles were wearing cowled robes.  Of course, we had to find out what a bunch of monks were doing, so we snuck back there and found that they have a small greenhouse and are growing flowers, cutting them and packaging them for sale.  This would explain the delivery vans going back and forth on the access road.

We do not own that land, but we know who does.  We didn't think they would like someone using the land without permission.  So, we contacted the owners.  Apparently, they tried to talk to the monks, but got no satisfaction.  The traffic to the woods continued.  Finally, our neighbors called Hugh, our local sheriff.  He's a very nice guy, but he can get people's attention when he needs to.  All it took was one visit from Hugh and the monks packed up and left.

Of course, you know what this means.  (wait for it)

Hugh and ONLY Hugh, can prevent florist friars.
Oooooooh.  You just HAD to, didn't you?

Wow!  Imagine that. 
If you'd like to see prior year installments, here they are!

2014 April Fool Post
2013 April Fool Post
2012 April Fool Post

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