Thank you so much to all the members that came out to visit and enjoy some food with us during our open house a couple of weeks ago! It was so nice to have you here and be able to really show you where your food is coming from and how it is grown. We always find that members who visit the farm leave with a much greater understanding and appreciation of what exactly they are getting in these farmshares of yours and how the food comes to make it from seed to field to your table.
As a farm serving members almost year round through community supported agriculture, we are putting seeds in the ground and harvesting for a large part of the year – we start earlier and go later than farms that only grow for the spring and summer months. This means that even now in late August we are still seeding in greenhouse flats and in the field to keep crops going well into the winter. Still, it is at times of the season like this that you can start to feel the transition from one stage to another. So, while early summer is all about frantically planting while weeding and harvesting all at once, as September approaches our focus shifts and the emphasis is on harvest with less weeding and smaller plantings going in. At this point in the season, we seed and plant things like greens for fall and early winter harvest and get ready to plant into greenhouse spaces in September for the crops that will go into winter shares.
We are also looking ahead and putting energy into preparing ground for next season’s crops. This means mapping out the 2019 garden, planning where everything will go and cultivating and cover cropping the ground to be ready for spring 2019. We seed winter-killed crops like oats, peas and barley in ground that will be used next year (as well as tillage radish which deeply penetrates the soil and helps to break up compaction and promote air flow and drainage) and seed winter-hardy rye as well as clovers in ground that will be fallow in 2019.
Late August is also the beginning of bulk harvests that will be our storage produce over the winter. Garlic is already cured and stored at this point and soon we will be pulling juicy onion bulbs and the first of the winter squash so that they too can cure and be ready to store for winter eating. It’s one of those moments during the season where you can really feel the cycle that we are in and the turn of the wheel that controls our motions – summer crops are still going but they will soon wane and the bounty of fall is emerging in all it’s deeply coloured beauty!1