They're Ba-ack; Signs of Spring
So many things come and go in our seasonal climate and spring is a time to welcome many things back. Hummingbirds, flowers, bright green grass, leaves... Specifically on the farm, we also welcome back a multitude of things. Many bring us great joy (fruit blossoms pictured above) and the not so joyous (black flies and other insects). Here's a little spring farm tour:
Mushrooms! These flavorful beauties are back! I still have not gotten the timing down perfectly, so that I have them ready for pick up, but have no fear everyone will get a shot at trying these all summer long. They pair perfectly with so many of the greens we grow, they are almost addictive.
Pigs! Every year, these guys bring me joy. They are all pink this year and will be harder to tell apart, but their personalities shine and crack me up. I've got a few this year who almost melt when I scratch them. It's mutually beneficial; they get love and their itches scratched and I get a natural brillo pad buffing of my rough farm hands! Come visit them, they love company : )
This is Jean and I doing surgical repair on remay. It's a fabric that covers the plants to protect them from the cold and insects. I'm not exactly sure who made this monstrous hole (eh-hem Simon? or maybe a deer) but we have found another use for duct tape. Remay is typically just a spring and fall thing (thank goodness); hopefully the insects won't be so bad this year that we have to cover crops all year.
Another one of our patients--Proteknet. Note we were covering holes about half the size of a baby aspirin, that's because the insect we are trying to keep out is about the size of a pin head. A flea beetle. It is a hard sided beetle that jumps like a flea. They LOVE brassicas (kale, pac choi, broccoli, radish, turnip....). We grow a LOT of brassicas. That equals a LOT of covering. And not just covering, we have to bury the edges of the fabric in soil these critters are so voracious. The kale in the hoop house is NOT covered, since it is so big now. You will notice this week's kale is not as perfect looking as last time...the flea beetles have fully woken up from their winter slumber.... welcome back : )
This Week's Bounty: storage carrot and onion/shallot, spring parsnips, fresh greens and herbs. Asparagus for some (eventually all, but it will be on rotation)
The Farmer's Table (A sample of our meals prepared from the farm's bounty)
*asparagus and mushroom fritatta
*Afrikan Stew -- lrf stew meat, carrot, parsnip, spinach and lots of spices