Adirondack blue and Norland red potatoes are very happy
Our first lettuce harvest!
We have 2 sheep and 3 lambs and 1 daughter who is determined to herd them everywhere.
Our garlic, which was planted last autumn should be ready in early July. We occasionally pull a few heads to see how they are progressing but also to experience that fresh green garlic flavor.
It’s funny when you walk out to the garden which is bare with several trays fulls of transplants. It’s not like planting seeds, which looks the exact same when you are done planting – until they come up. Planting starts is like having a instant garden – very rewarding.
We are getting 2 pregnant sheep (ewes) in the coming days. They will graze and eat hay. In the spring we will sheer them for wool (not sure what we’ll do with that yet). The pregnant sheep will produce 1-2 lambs. The females we’ll keep, the males we won’t.
We’ve started building a stall in the corner of the barn using cut logs from our trees.
More when they arrive.
There are many new things to be learned in farming from year to year – some of them from trial and error.
My mantra going into this year has been “put the work in now in order to save later”. It’s sometimes easy to forget in the early spring, when there are no weeds and plenty of water that by summer weeds and lack of consistent water can lead to quickly overgrown vegetables beds and loss of yields.
Our no-till approach has meant putting down lots of paper and mulch in the pathways to help control weeds, having lots of extra straw, mulch, grass clippings on hand to suppress weeds, and running a no-drip water system – which again helps control weeds by only watering where we have planted. We have the no-drip system on a timer as well, which is one less thing to worry about.
In the green house we have a 250 gallon rain barrel to reuse rain water and aslow drip systems for our tomato bed. Below are some photos of some of this infrastructure.
mulched pathways, raised beds with irrigation lines
greenhouse rain barrel and drip system
lots of new starts in the greenhouse
April 3 2014
Our nano farm has begun. Starts are the green house, early greens and radish sowed in our newly turned beds. This is the first season of the NEK farm. There is much to do and things are in full swing with nowhere near enough hours in the day to accomplish them all, so it is a matter of prioritizing and not stressing. For sure we need to get our deer fencing up as well as our new hens on pasture – well more like lawn until they do away with it, as well as run irrigation, plow some other fields, plant our onions, build a new hen coop …….
We’ve tapped our trees and are boiling down the sap – 40 gallons of maple water = 1 gallon of syrup – so it takes a while unless you have an evaporator – which we don’t.
This week we’re taking a break and bring the maple water straight to NEK for an inspiring taste of spring. Maple sap (or maple water) has just a blush of sweetness, it’s similar to coconut water but lighter and soft in the mouth. The water is naturally filtered by the tree and is full of vitamins.