Friday, December 5, 2014
The late planting of spinach is still alive despite several nights in the single digits, so I have decided to give it some help with a simple mini hoop. There is plenty of moisture in the ground and with some sunny days I hope to be able to harvest small handfuls every week or two for awhile. We'll see.
Monday, December 1, 2014
Starting around November 10 we began experiencing below freezing weather and by the 14th there was at least two inches of hard frost in the ground. I rescued about 15 lbs of carrots although it was tough digging through the frost.
Saturday, November 8, 2014
Tuesday, November 4, 2014
Monday, October 27, 2014
I planted two rows of garlic yesterday. The East row was all good large bulbs and I used 16 of them with the cloves spaced about 8" apart. The West row includes some second-year bulbil cloves which I am experimenting with.
This ground was plowed, disced, and dragged with the spring tooth the day before. Just prior to planting I dragged again with the cultimulcher setup with three closely spaced teeth and a deep setting to mark the rows. This worked well but the rows were not as straight as I hoped. This strip was production ground consisting of bok choi and cucurbits this season. After planting I spread compost by hand directly on top of the two rows.
Pretty good frost this month probably six mornings so far that looked like this.
Friday, October 10, 2014
Overall the daikon radishes are doing a better job of crowding out weeds. The oats are weaker and also suffer animal damage more. The peas are very spotty. I am pulling weeds in the oats and peas to help out.
Friday, October 3, 2014
Thursday, October 2, 2014
Drilled in rye yesterday after composting and dragging. Rain comes this afternoon.
This is how we looked doing the final dragging of the field. This field started in May or June with lots of buckthorn and grapevines. After roughing things out I went in with the tractor spring tooth and planted to buckwheat. This came up weakly and sometime in August I plowed it up with the tractor. The plow found a lot more roots and really helped get them out, although I suspect there are many more still in. But hopefully there are enough gone that it can be plowed with the team next year. I worked the ground every time a weed crop came up. The Western part of this new ground was already planted to daikon radishes, having first started with buckwheat.
Tuesday, September 30, 2014
I have announced their demise several times now, but the zucchini and yellow squash are still producing. Fruits are smaller now and I can wait a day or two between picking now. Furthermore, there is a lot of die back in the vines. But there is still squash! Weather has been as low as high 30's and into the low 80's. Overall a fairly cool late summer and early fall though.
Saturday, September 27, 2014
I went out with the threesome and tried to break up a few more clods before planting. Rain is forecast in a few days. Not real pretty with some of the big chunks but the seed was well covered. Interestingly, the soil was finer and more prepared in the middle, high part of the field. This is also where things seem to grow best.
Turkey Red Winter Wheat was drilled in using my Earthway Garden Seeder set to 1" and the swiss chard beet okra plate. This plate tends to dump in more than one seed at a time, but the next smaller plate tends to skip and drills more of the small seeds than bigger ones.
Finished planting is 12' x 120'. I measured and counted carefully and came up with a rate of 81.6 lbs/ acre, or 1,122,541 seeds per acre. This is perfect and I'm very pleased to get this close to the recommendations. The rows are maybe 6" apart but the seeder bounces all over.
To come to my estimate I counted out 200 seeds on the kitchen counter and weighed them with a high-school type gram scale. 200 seeds = 6.6 grams, hence 859 seeds per ounce
Thursday, September 25, 2014
The corn stubble was plowed with the team yesterday. Can't believe how well it worked!
I went back the next day with Rosie in place of Cassie, planning to finish off with the cultimulcher. Rosie tired quickly and I changed to the disc. She still struggled and we did not get all the clods out. I plan to go back in a few days with the three abreast and really go over it with the cultimulcher. Next rain is forecast in about 5-7 days, and one way or another I will get the turkey red winter wheat planted before then.
Monday, September 22, 2014
The wild animal damage to the sweet corn never let up. The cold weather did not help. Still not sure if this is raccoon or deer damage. I plan on raising the electric fence and installing chicken wire on the perimeter next year. The trap caught one raccoon but continues to hve the bait stolen.
Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Still waiting on the cantaloupe. They are not ripe yet but production looks good
Summer squash plants have been dying back but still getting 2-6 zucchini and squash per day
New ground to the east is full of buckthorn roots, which surf after every tillage operation. This ground was cleared, worked with the spring tooth tractor, planted to buckwheat, and then plowed with the tractor. It will soon be planted to rye
Monday, September 15, 2014
Setting up a new garden site close to the house. This was spaded (poorly) and 3 loads of compost dumped on. I seeded it to daikon radish. Despite being 30 feet from the chicken coop it looks like some of them will survive. This is 3 or maybe 4 days after seeding
Thursday, September 11, 2014
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Winter squash September 4. I have not picked any butternut yet but they are getting close. The color of some squash has turned but the vines are still green and strong.