Thursday, March 26, 2015

Transplanting

This week was the first big transplanting day!  We've been preparing for the last several weeks. Spreading compost, trying to kill rye cover crops, forming beds, more removing rye, spreading organic fertilizer....and finally planting.  The new transplanter took some learning to get it right.  But once we were running 5 us could spend 3 minutes planting a space that used to take more like 1.5 hours!
It was almost too big and heavy for the tractor, I had to drive slowly and carefully! 

And the planter does a better job!  The rows are straight and parallel so later weeding will be a snap.  Also the waterwheel part automatically adds water and fish emulsion to each baby.  This will give them a great boost.  In the past we had to rush around to get our drip irrigation running as quick as we could so the newly planted small plants wouldn't wilt to nothing in the afternoon sun (its a big change for them to go from greenhouse to field-even when we try to toughen them up by putting the trays outside and watering less).

Red Cabbage

Awesome crew!





Monday, March 9, 2015

Compost Day!

One week ago the farm looked like this:
Chickens huddling in the snow!

Sliding around on farm roads in 4 wheel drive

Today I spread about 3/4 of the compost for the year.  About 60 tons on a little under three acres.  20 tons/acre of compost does wonders for the vegetables.  Our sandy soil has greatly benefited from the increased water and nutrient holding capacity of compost.

 The first year we spread compost we put it in the back of our F-250.  Then someone slowly drove while I shoveled like mad.  It was slow and painful-my shoulders did not appreciate that treatment!  Now we rent a neighbor's spreader truck.  Loading with a loader then spreading with the truck is fun spring job now!  This year I got to learn how to drive the ol' '67 spreader truck so I didn't get any videos of it in action.  So below is a video from last year.
Next step plant veggies-sSpring greens, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, radish, and more are just around the corner!