|9th Harvest Week||May 10th - 16th, 2004||
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"Forget the past, for it is gone from your domain! Forget the future,
for it is beyond your reach! Control the present! ... This is the way
of the wise."
Whats in the standard share:
Kale or collard greens
... and if you have an extra-fruit option:
Sat. June 10
July 30, 31, Aug. 1
Sat. Sept. 25
Sat. Oct 23rd
A typical morning.
The farm is now bursting with life, and it is challenging to pay attention
to all the details as the pace accelerates. My favorite time to start
the day is just before sunrise, around 5:30 am. I brew myself a cup of
coffee and head out, just as the rooster crows. First stop is the greenhouse
to prioritize what needs to be planted. Today, the canteloupe and a second
succession of tomato seedlings are ready. A new batch of summer squash,
cucumbers and a trial sample of watermelons is germinating. Seedlings
in the greenhouse need to get out of their little containers so they don't
get stressed and root-bound. Timing is important. In the field, everything
must be ready before they can be planted. The soil has to be prepared
which in the spring is especially challenging. Our tractors work hard
and long hours. The cover crop has to be mowed down and plowed under,
then compost, gypsum (a calcium and sulfur rich mineral), rock dust, and
organic fertilizer are spread mechanically. Preparing the soil so that
it has its loose, crumbly consistency is a dance with the moisture content
in the ground. Too much moisture creates a sticky mess compacting the
soil; too little will create a dustcloud and pulverize the soil structure.
Once the beds are shaped, all the irrigation must be set up. Some crops,
such as tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers and eggplant, will be drip irrigated.
Others, such as broccoli and lettuce, love to be rained on from above
with sprinklers. Checking the rest of the greenhouse, I notice the birds
have discovered a batch of sunflower seedlings. I cover them to save what
remains, hoping I do not have to resow the whole batch. I check the gopher
traps in the strawberries, and make a note that some plants are showing
signs of verticillium wilt (a soil borne fungus) which inevitably will
spread throughout the block. The plums have aphids... should I spray a
garlic/compost tea mixture or wait for the ladybugs (which I notice have
also spotted the aphids) to do the job? As I check to see if the raspberries
need watering, I spot a yellow dot among a thicket of green. Mmmm... I
savor my first sweet golden raspberry of the season. The goats spotted
me as well, "meeeh, MEEEEEHHH!!," calling me to feed them. They
will have to wait for Joe, who will feed and milk them soon. I take a
quick peek underneath the rowcovers to check on the eggplants which were
transplanted to the field a few days ago. Next, I turn on the well pump
to make sure all our storage tanks are full before meeting with Juan,
who is waiting for me at our other site down the road. We farm a total
of 25 acres, spread across three different sites. Although I like the
diversity in microclimates and soil conditions, I wish I could farm only
one piece of land. Juan and I inspect the crops which will be harvested
for the shares this week. Arugula is already mature enough to be harvested;
I make a mental note to add it to the list of "what's in the box
this week." I see the workers have arrived, and already have begun
to pick strawberries which need to be delivered to Santa Cruz before noon.
As I walk back to the car I notice one of the tractors has a flat tire,
which reminds me I also need to repair one of our leaking water pumps.
I take a shortcut through the pear orchard and notice several pear trees
have fireblight, a notorious pear disease which can kill the tree if not
stopped by carefully pruning the affected areas. As I head home, hoping
to squeak a quick bite of breakfast into my morning, I also remember that
Kristy, this year's farm intern, will join us today. The timing of her
arrival is perfect, as we can use her help for Saturday's OPEN FARM DAY.
from Debbies Kitchen . . . . .
. . . Have a recipe youd like to share? Contact
*Click Here* for a link to a comprehensive listing of recipes from Live Earth Farm's newsletters going back as far as our 1998 season! You can search for recipes by key ingredient. Recipe site is updated weekly during the season.