It seems like there is always a crazy dip to freezing temperatures right around the time we are ready to transplant tomatoes. We put them out to harden off anyway. Doug tucked the tomato seedlings under heavy row cover last night in preparation for the hard freeze. We were expecting a low of 31. When I looked at the the thermometer this morning, it registered 25 degrees!
Yikes! Did they freeze? That would set us back 6 weeks!
I was very happy to see that the plants were fine. Thank goodness! We’re not out of the woods yet though, there are 4 more weeks until our last frost date. Spring, it’s a raucous adventure.
We’re bringing more spring greens to market on Saturday. Our lettuce mix, market mix, mixed greens, baby kale and microgreens.
This is our first experience with sub zero temperatures for an extended period. I haven’t peeked beneath the row covers yet so I don’t know the extent, if any, of damage to our crops. Today at least the sun is shining clear and bright. Right now it’s 60 degrees in the high tunnels. We’ll know more on Friday when temps are forecast to be above freezing. Stay tuned…
It’s also kidding season here at the farm. It seems like those babies decide they want to be born on the absolute coldest days of the year. Two hypothermia babies out of 11 and hopefully no more. They have both fully recovered and have been happily returned to their mamas thanks to Doug’s loving care.
On the upside, the snow cover is providing much needed moisture for spring growth! And we’re seeding tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, scallions, onions, lettuce, kale, chard. Plus, cilantro, parsley and basil. We delayed transplanting seedlings this week due to the extreme temperature. We have a lot of work to do to catch up next week.
For Winter Farmers Market, it’s too cold to harvest this week. We will be back at market (weather permitting) on Saturday February 27.
Stay warm and safe!
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Welcome February! Now that we have finally passed through the Persephone period, the days are getting longer quickly and our plants will finally return to actively growing. Elliot Coleman named the term “Persephone Days” for the time of year when daylight falls below 10 hours per day referencing the daughter of Demeter, Goddess of the Harvest in Greek mythology. It’s during this darkest time of the year that plant growth essentially stops. Here at the farm, that period starts November 22 and ends January 19.
Now in February, we have kicked seeding and transplanting into high gear. The high tunnels allow us to get plants in earlier than we could outdoors. We’re thankful.
At market this Saturday we’ll have all kinds of microgreens, a bit of baby kale and spinach. With longer and hopefully more sunny days to come, I expect lettuce mix to return to market in mid-February. The high tunnels are packed with plants just waiting for the sun to return!
Be well, stay well! Karen
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Welcome Spring! We are starting seedlings weekly now using Eliot Coleman’s system for seed starting. Soil-blocking is a seed-starting method that allows us to produce vigorous seedlings with roots that quickly reestablish growth upon transplanting. Soil-blocking further eliminates the expense, waste, and storage issues associated with plastic pots. And… it’s a great excuse to play in the mud!