Monday, September 30, 2013

My Absense From the Blog-A brief appology and update

So looking at the blog has made me feel pretty bad lately seeing as nothing has been posted all season.  As this has been a start up year things have been pretty crazy and I am just now catching up with communicating with the outside world.  I will be posting some past newsletters and such to update what has been going on on the farm.  In the meantime here are a few pictures from the season!
It takes a lot of trucks and trailers to move a farm
Snapping turtle in the driveway-early spring
Springtime greenhouse full of transplants
Lettuce transplants loaded up and ready to go
High Tunnel Construction
Tomato plants in the greenhouse
Sunny afternoon cultivating aka killing weeds!
Planting tomatoes with the help from our friends at La Prima Catering and Vin 909

Driving our new tractor home from the dealership-it only took an hour to get back :)

Spring Fields
Watering the Greenhouse

Peggy and John- Viscous guard dogs
Green butterhead Lettuce

Sunset behind the greenhouse

Working Together

About a week ago Kevin and I moved the laying hens across the farm.  We moved them to the area where our winter squash was recently harvested out of.  At times we use the chickens like this to eat up bugs and grass and clean up and re-fertilize an area where we have had vegetables growing.  We find that the chickens are very beneficial to our vegetable operation.  We can move them around; graze them on cover crops and more.  In the late season we have struggled with stink bugs decimating all of our plants in the cucurbit family.  This includes cucumbers, zucchini, summer squash and winter squash.  We harvested our winter squash just in time before the stink bugs really had a field day eating the fruits.  They also enjoy eating the bottom of the stem of a very healthy looking cucumber plant so that it dies just in time before producing any fruit.  You might gather that I am not a huge fan of these guys.  Anyway, we moved the chickens over to the area where the squash was planted hoping to move them through the field and have them eat grass and bugs.  Today, after giving them some fresh water, Kevin and I were standing watching the chickens as they went after all the stink bugs which are all over the place in this field. We don’t know if the chickens will make a big difference at all but it is always interesting to see them go to work and to see, in small ways, the benefits of being a diversified farm.  We will keep you updated if the chickens eat all the stink bugs.  That would be a miracle.  As we were leaving the field I picked up a stunted watermelon that will never be able to ripen that was outside of the fence.  It, being just one fruit was covered in probably 50-75 stink bugs.  I picked it up gently and threw it in with the chickens.