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Plum Granny Farm Weekly Update -- Mid-Summer Meanderings

Posted 7/24/2015 9:10am by Cheryl Ferguson.

Hello Farm Friends!  Happy Friday!

I think they call it "Summer Slump" -- that point in mid-summer when the plants seem to be giving up, the weeds are doing their happy dance, and the farmers are just plain tired.  Yep -- sounds like the state of things here at Plum Granny Farm!

It's hard after you get through the rush of an amazing blackberry season, a phenomenal farm tour and great garlic harvest.  There's always a bit of a let-down.  But we have to keep on moving forward!  So what do farmers do when the slump hits?  Plant more things!!  (well, we would LIKE to go to the Outer Banks.... but since we can't.....)

Yes, we have been busy planting!  The okra and sweet potatoes that we got in the ground last week look amazing and the beans -- Wow!  Just take a look! I keep wondering if the beans were planted by Jack.

Newly planted green beans  Flat Shoals field with beans & sweet potatoes

We've also been busy seeding in the greenhouse -- kale, swiss chard, lettuces, kohlrabi, brussels sprouts, pak choy, tat soi and even pansies and johnny jump-up violas! A preview of things to come.

With a newly planted field, now is the best time to get the weeds under control.  We use our flame weeder for a lot of these tasks -- we were able to knock down any of the weeds in the beans the day before the plants emerged!  It's all about timing!  Here's Chris demonstrating his skill with the flamer!

Chris flame weeding Flat Shoals

We continue to plant more strawberry tips for our 2016 crop -- we need about 3,500 plants so we can expand our strawberry field and have plants for sale this fall.  Another group of youth from the Leadership In Training program at YMCA Camp Hanes visited yesterday as part of their week of community service activities.  They helped us get more plants out of the field and into trays!  Thanks so much for your help, Campers!

LIT youth in strawberries  LIT youth planting strawberry tips    Counselors Alex & Addie plant their strawberries  Camp Hanes LIT group shot

Other Farm Doings

Potato harvest has begun!  Those delicious little packages of yummy potato-iness will show up on our table at market this week.  Here's Ray bushhogging the field to get ready for the harvest.

Ray and the bushhog in potatoes

We also got up the shade structure on the east side of the greenhouse to give some relief to the turmeric and rhubarb.  I think the plants are happier already!

Shadecloth off the greenhouse   

Market Updates

Find us under the purple tent at Cobblestone Farmers Market at Old Salem (Saturday, 9-noon) and King Farmers Market at the YMCA (Wednesday, 11-1). We will have the first of our potatoes!  We'll have LaRatte fingerlings as well as a new potato to us, Binjte.  These heirloom potatoes are of Dutch origin but also widely cultivated in Belgium, the country that insists it invented frites.  We tried an early batch and are happy to report they are excellent!

We'll also have cured garlic -- Inchelium Red, Music, Chesnok and Lorz Italian.  There will be lots of French Red Shallots, Tomato Fruit Boxes, Cabbage (Caraflex - a European favorite), Swiss Chard and artichokes -- all Certified Organic!  And back by popular demand -- we'll also be sampling Yam's Jam Sweet Potato Cheesecake and will have special pricing on Yam's Jam Sweet Potato Butter. 

We are happy to hold an item for you -- just let us know no later than 9 p.m. the day before market (Friday evening or Tuesday evening).

Tomorrow is Culinarians Day -- a special day for anyone who cooks. You don't have to be a chef, or a graduate of a culinary institute to celebrate this delicious day. You simply have to cook and enjoy the results - and we know that applies to all of you!  And thanks for using local and Organic produce in those dishes!

Until next week,

Cheryl & Ray 

Elves at Work! Our Online Store is Ready to Serve You!

We've been really jammin' so now our online store is fully stocked and waiting for your orders! Click here to go right to the shelves.  You'll find our popular fruit-forward Jams (regular and gift-size jars), Garlic Powder and Granules as well as our new Ginger Powder and Lavender Sachets!  

NEW!  Local customers can order online and arrange to pick up their items at the farm or at the Cobblestone Farmers Market Winter Market.

 

Do you want the latest news from the farm? How about the opportunity to reserve items for pick-up at market? Join our mailing list for our "Plum Granny Farm Weekly Update"!