What We Do Now Is Critical For A Successful Spring
While our efforts on the farm may look like we are shutting things down, in reality, what we do these next few weeks will significantly impact our ability to smoothly ramp-up our gardening efforts next spring. There is always so much to do once the snow starts melting, and we have learned that the more we do now, the easier it is to get the season started (when there is so much to do that it can feel overwhelming!).
That’s why I say, “our farm season really starts in the fall.”
So, as we finish harvesting each bed, we remove the dying plants, and carefully cover each bed with tarps. Of course, that work almost looks like tucking in sheets on a bed. By doing this, the nutrient-rich mulch is protected from the wind and rain and the harsh snows and spring melt. The tarp also holds in moisture and protects the planting area from invasive weeds early in the spring.
What we are doing now is exactly what we couldn’t accomplish last fall (before we moved to this new property) which made the first month or two of gardening extremely challenging. Our goal is, because we can strategically “tuck in the garden” now so that next spring’s first greens might be ready early. And that is good!
Of course, there are 1,001 other chores and tasks we have to do as we close down the garden. Things as simple as draining the water lines and putting away the hoses as the weather gets colder. Cleaning up the tools and putting them in storage. Cleaning and storing all the planting trays. Shutting down the wash stand. Repairing the mobile chicken coops. Taking an inventory of broken tools that need repaired or replaced.
It is also critical that we tackle some important administrative tasks. A lot of it is “housekeeping” stuff to keep things organized. But in light of rising prices, we hope to place all our orders for next season’s seeds, tools, planting trays, plastic tarps, and other office and field supplies. Just like everything else, prices are going up and if we can order early, we will get better prices and have everything in place before the season starts.
Testing … testing … 1, 2, 3
As we finish off the season, we are eager to try some experimenting before the really harsh weather sets in. What we want to do with the high tunnel is to see how long we can sustain viable growing conditions and harvest some late greens.
It is a tricky experiment. We have read how other farmers in northern climates have done it successfully, but it is a new skill-set for us to hone. Crops like kale and spinach are hardy, and by using the high tunnel we might be able to provide you with garden-fresh salads deeper into the colder months!
Locally-Sourced Has Its Benefits
You probably have seen your grocery bill go up recently! Supply chain issues are impacting the big grocery store chains. As demand stays high, but supplies are low, it drives up prices.
But we still have both chicken and beef available – raised right here on our farm (not in some massive and unhealthy feed-lot or poultry warehouse) – so you can have the most flavorful and nutritious meats available.
In fact, the last of broiler chickens already came back from the butcher. We weren’t able to raise as many this year, so our stock will probably not last as long as it usually does – so if you have enjoyed our tasty birds in the past, you may want to pre-order some to make sure you get them before our supplies are gone.
And if you love our beef, we still need to sell one cow. You can buy ¼ cow, ½ cow or a whole cow – contact us for more details (or click here to find out more).
3, 2, 1 … The Countdown Begins
It hard to believe that our 2021 summer season is nearing the end. But there is no slacking off yet. In fact, as long as we have these warmer-than-average temps, we will provide you with some great cool-weather veggies -- hopefully right to the end of the season.
So, look for some great-tasting fresh greens – boc choi, lettuce mix, spinach -- in each of these last three deliveries, along with some delicious zucchini, juicy tomatoes, sweet carrots, broccoli raab and flavorful dill (we know dried dill weed is sold in the spice section of the supermarket, but the store item is a pale substitute for fresh!).
And remember, you can go to our store today and customize your order with some basil, watermelon-radishes, turnips, cucumber, and eggplant.
It won’t be long before we see frost … and then snow … on the ground. But until then, we think you will really enjoy each week’s offerings.
Winter Deliveries – Every Two Weeks
Although our summer season is coming to a close, we will still offer you our fresh eggs, chicken and beef (and, depending on the weather, we may still have some fresh-picked greens available).
The ongoing delivery schedule will shift to every other week. Anyone who is interested, please sign up on our website -- and share this with friends and family who might like to receive fresh and nutritious locally grown food raised by area farmers!
Your Future, Your Food
Who's out there in your community thinking about your future food?
Are they careful? Do they know you? Do they care about you? Do they know it’s YOUR food and it matters? Or are you just a hypothetical and replaceable and inconsequential customer somewhere on the other side of the globe?
We plant for people we know. We care to do a good job because we care about those people that we know. And we keep an eye to the future and plan for THEIR future because we care. For them.
And I think they care about us. And that sort of community interaction creates a better world to live in.
What seeds are you planting today? Whose future are you seeding for? Who do you harvest for? We think these are important questions. And we hope you do too.
[This segment was adapted from our Instagram account. If you aren’t already a subscriber, check us out https://www.instagram.com/abrahamstablefarm/]