Thursday, June 20, 2013

BGF News May 2013

Volume XX , Number 3- May 2013 

Weather notes:
Precipitation to date this month: Rain:  1.8"
Snow: 10"

What’s up on the farm?

Unseasonable cold weather, followed by snow and power outages followed by unseasonably hot weather and now the summer storms have begun. Crazy stuff that! Nothing but a good rain here during yesterday's exciting weather outbreak.

The season has gotten off to an exciting start and we are good and busy trying to get everything that needs to be done, done. We during last week's dry weather the farm crew was able to get all the remaining beds composted and tilled for their upcoming crops. We also got caught up on our direct sowing with plantings of salad mix, choi, fennel, nasturtiums and beans. Transplanting has moved on as well with all of the zucchini, patty pan squash and cucumbers tucked into the field beds. I'd love to say they are tucked in "safely" but the very evening that we planted them, they were besieged by hordes of the dreaded cucumber beetles. We lose more crops to this nasty little bug and there is no organic control for it. So we will just have to see if the transplants are strong enough to survive the onslaught.  Those crops aside the rest of the early crops are looking good, including some big plantings of head lettuce that we hope will help to extend our salad season.

We did take advantage of a couple of wet days to go through and "pot up" all of our baby transplants to bigger pots. It looked as though Jane of the Jungle had moved into the sunroom for a week or so, but now that the nighttime temperatures have moderated, we have been able to move the tomatoes, peppers, eggplant & basil all out to the high tunnel where they are practicing being big plants until they make their final move out to the field.

We were very concerned about our fruit trees during the recent cold snap and heavy snow (and yes, we really did get 10"). However most of them appear to have been undamaged by the cold and weight and are blooming and setting tiny fruits as we watch. The bees are very happy for all the trees blooming as many plants were delayed in setting blooms, so there wasn't much forage for the bees early in the season. But now, looking our over the millions of dandelions blooming in the gardens (grrrr!) I think that problem has passed.

Finally, we are very sad to report that we lost an important member of the BGF family this month. Many of you knew that my (Jill's) grandfather had moved in with us early this spring after the loss of his wife over the winter. Unfortunately his stay was much shorter than any of us could have imagined and he passed away following a heart attack on May 3rd. He was an inspirational man and we were so lucky to have him here on the farm with us. His presence will always remain here, in our memories as well as with the orchard that he started this spring. Ah, if we all could share the optimism (and energy) of a man who plants a fruit orchard at 96 years of age.

2013 CSA Season
We anticipate the first delivery of the 2013 season to be the first Tuesday in June, weather-depending. We will send out first delivery notices the week before we start. First-time members will also receive an "orientation letter" at that time giving you all the information you need for your first season with us.
Delivery locations will be the same as last year: Des Moines at Ritual Café, Knoxville at The Next Chapter and on the farm.

That’s about it this month, if you have any questions or comments be sure to let us know. 

Best from the farm,
Jill & Sean (and Blue & Luci)
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