We are getting are hands back in to the work of the upcoming season of planting and seeding, infrastructure upgrades and prep. It seems as if every spring is remarkably different in our part of the world and this year we’ve been dealing with cold, wet and very changeable spring weather – a huge difference from last year’s warm, dry spring.
As farmers, we are minutely aware of the weather’s vagaries and how they effect our work and our crops. Most apparent at this time of year is how the weather will effect the growth and health of our spring crops. Lots of sun and warmer temperatures will mean quick growing, healthy crops while overcast, cold days will have crops stall and sometimes struggle. Last night’s negative 15 degree weather had us wringing our hands for the tender lettuces and greens working to size up in the hoophouse! They all came through well but the cold, snowy, overcast weather is not our favourite. We are hoping for warmer, sunnier days soon!
Our hoophouses are filled with greens destined for early spring shares which we hope to begin delivering on the second week of April. However, we may have a late start due to this weather so spring members watch for an email from me in the coming weeks verifying your start date!
Aside from the lovely work of planting, seeding and crop management in the hoophouses, other spring projects are well underway. We’ve been seeding up a storm in the propagation house, getting your 2022 summer shares going. Onions, scallions and celery, herbs, tomatoes, peppers and eggplant are all seeded and warm on the germination table and next week we’ll do a big seeding of spring brassicas – kohlrabi and broccoli, cabbages, kale as well as lettuce, fennel and chard will all be going in next week in expectation for an early May field start.
Last week also saw the delivery of materials for our fourth hoophouse which we will be erecting in the next few weeks. Part of our ongoing future plans, this hoophouse will allow us to expand our winter and early spring greens production and provide more space for summer crops like peppers and tomatoes. We have been fortunate to have incredible staff return to work at the farm for several years now and we would like to be able to provide stable work for them more of the year. Expanding our spring and winter production will hopefully allow us to do that. It’s also really nice to be able to provide local, ecologically grown, delicious food at these times of year and these simple covered structures allow us to grow really great greens when fields are still cold.
And speaking of incredible staff, we are thrilled to be welcoming back all of our co-farmers from last season – Jess Martin, Connor Ross and Madeline Marmor. We’re also super fortunate to be bringing in our neighbour and best friend Ahren Hughes part time. It’s going to be a great season!1