Monday, August 1, 2011

August 2nd and 5th

Summer has Come!!!
Summer is marked by the crunch of a cucumber as far as I am concerned. From now on each day is filled with harvesting; cucumbers, summer squash, zucchini, green beans and soon tomatoes and melons. I try and do each of these every other day and split them up so I am not harvesting all of them in one day!
I realized yesterday that this week was the last week that I will seed in the greenhouse for the year. It is amazing how fast the time flies--August already!! The growing season is almost 2 months shorter here in Maine than where I started farming in PA and I can't say that I have fully gotten used to it yet. This year, more than ever, I am seeing how "living in the moment" is a very difficult task for a farmer. The shortest seed I have is a radish which is about 30 days. This means from the moment I drop the seed into soil, it will be approximately 30 days until I am able to harvest. Most of my crops however are, on average, 60 days--2 months and on up to 110 days. I am continuously thinking about 2-3 months down the road and sometimes even 10 months--I seed the parsnips in June and don't harvest them until April the next year!
Here it is: the mark of summer, the cucumber, and all I can think about is what I need to sow for the fall and winter harvests, what I need to bed the empty spots down with so they aren't bare for the winter, etc, etc, etc...I don't know who ever said that farmers where dumb. I mean here is a job where you have to be on your toes at every moment; it's a business, a brain twister, a scheduling/planning/logistical game all while teetering on the whim of nature. Oh and it would be nice to have some marketing and mechanical skills under your belt as well : ) It's tricky I tell you. There is never a dull moment!

Green bean it up! Extra green beans for sale at pick up$2/lb
Be sure to check out last year's post for the descriptions of all the summer squash...

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