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Plum Granny Farm Weekly Update -- Have We Melted Yet?

Posted 7/29/2016 6:01pm by Cheryl Ferguson.

Hello Farm Friends!  Happy Friday! 

97.7  103.3  101.3 101.7  102.2  102.4  98.2  Nope, this isn't a listing of the top radio stations in the area.  These are the actual temperature readings on our weather station for the past 7 days.  And yes, it is the ACTUAL temperature, not the heat index (and the thermometer is on the north side of the house!) YIKES!

Even the bees have been forced to seek comfort on their porches with the fans going at full tilt -- good thing they have some shade.

Bearding bees in the Topbar hive  Bees on the front of the Langstroth hive

We've been guzzling copious amounts of water this week and starting even earlier in the day (6 or 6:30 a.m.) to try to beat the heat.  But it has been picking us off one at a time.  Hopefully we will be getting some relief from the blast furnace -- now if we'd only get some rain.  Our last real rain was nearly 3 weeks ago.

Despite the heat, we've still be getting some things done.  The blackberries are done for the year so it is time to get the canes that bore this year's fruit (floricanes) off of the plant.  Today Andrew worked through the Ouachita and got them cleaned up and weeded.  Looking good!

Andrew cutting out the floricanes in the Ouachita

 Our fig tree has borne the brunt of two very cold winters (that sounds REALLY good right now!) and had lost most of its canopy.  We finally got a chance to clear it out and support the remaining branches in hopes that we can keep it going -- it has produced a LOT of excellent figs!  While we won't get any this year, we are hopeful for 2017!

Ray working with the fig tree

We had a great Twilight Pick Your Own last Sunday and some of our guests had a special visit from BB!  She is getting much better with her halter and lead -- and she is so good with kids!

BB and her new friend

Although BB likes to go out on these adventures, Brix isn't so sure about it.  She is very protective of her little charge and must give her a good sniffing when she returns.

Brix is checking out BB after her PYO visit

Things continue to grow like crazy (especially the pigweed and grasses) and the PYO Pumpkin Patch continues to fill out -- perhaps the Great Pumpkin will be found here this year! You'll be able to come pick out your own great pumpkin -- mark your calendar for our Fall Festival scheduled for October 23!

PYO Pumpkin Patch

The sunflowers that our young visitors planted at our last big event, the Northern Triad Farm Tour, are really growing and some of the transplanted ones are starting to bloom!

Sunflowers from seed planted at Farm Tour  Transplanted sunflowers from Farm Tour

The Pause That Refreshes...

We are doing it again.  Last year we took a break mid-season -- a "market pause" -- not a vacation but rather a "pause."  This break was invigorating so we are making it a tradition (at least a 2nd Annual!).

So here's the deal:  we are taking a break from markets for the next two weeks.  Our crops say they are not ready for prime time so we will listen to them.  We will not be at Cobblestone Farmers Market for the next 2 Saturdays (8/6 and 8/13) and we will not be at King Farmers Market on 8/3 or 8/10.

Despite the market pause, we will be doing lots of things around the farm to get it (and us) ready for the busy fall season.  There are fields to ready, plants and seeds to plant, berries to tend, equipment to maintain and our annual Organic Systems Plan to submit.  But it will be different.  We will be a bit more on our schedule and not be driven by market preparation and market days.  It will actually be a break!  Expect to see more cheerful, less stressed and rested farmers when you next see us at market on August 17 or 20!

Market Updates!

But before the pause, we will be at Cobblestone Farmers Market in Old Salem tomorrow (7/30) with lots of Certified Organic tastiness including beaucoup LaRatte and Amarosa Fingerling and Standard Potatoes (German Butterball, Nicola, Russet and Bintje), freshly CURED GARLIC (Red Toch, Music, Chesnok, Georgian Crystal, Lahontan and Lorz Italian). French Red Shallots, Leeks, Okra, Tomato Fruit Boxes, Beets, and Kohlrabi. We'll also have our Garlic Scape Pesto -- pasta salad with fresh Chocolate Drop tomatoes! Sounds like a homerun!  And you better stock up since we won't be there for TWO weeks!

Stay cool, Friends!  We'll be catching up with you soon!

Cheryl & Ray

Get Ready for PlumFresh 2021!

Registration for the 2021 Season is NOW OPEN!  PlumFresh is our own twist on a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program.  It is flexible and customizable -- and you don't have to pay for the entire season upfront.  Click here for more information!  Ready to sign up now?  Click here!

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