Well, we sure got some rain last week. The two rain events we got on Thursday and Friday were close to 5 inches! And Friday was the worst of it. There was no where for that water to go and the fields got flooded. It was one of the worst aftermath I have seen in my years of farming. Standing water everywhere. Little streams of water running down the hill. We put in about 2000 transplants on Wednesday and Thursday and some of them were buried in spots!
It got me thinking about resiliency in an ever-changing climate. Last year was one of the driest years on record. For 3 years we “dry-farmed”, meaning we didn’t use any irrigation. To remedy that, we had a well installed out in our field. This year, has been one of the wettest and thankfully we haven’t had to use our well. But a wet year poses its own challenges, field prep and planting being a couple. How do we remedy that? We could have drainage tile put in but that’s expensive. A few things that will help and what we’re working towards are more organic matter in our soil, more land and possibly some permanent beds in our consistent problem areas.
But, it wasn’t all doom and gloom last week. It was actually a great one on the farm. We welcomed 3 new workers (and a job coach) on the farm. This is the second summer in a row that we have partnered with Challenge Workforce Solutions to be a work site for their Summer Youth Employment Program. It’s a great opportunity for our Sustainable Farming and Food Systems students to be in a leadership role and mentor and work with youth. Another great added bonus is that we get some extra hands on the farm and the impact was immediately felt. Now that the bulk of our weekly transplanting is done, we can really focus on weeding, not just a little bit here and there.
We got through about 14 beds and a good amount of them were beds that you looked at, you weren’t sure there was a crop in there. We like to look at weeding as crop liberation and boy, did we liberate some crops! Now we just have to stay on top of things! Keeping our fingers crossed.
Alrighty, on to this week’s CSA share. Once again, we’ve got some new items. This week, there will be the first of the flat leaf parsley (I know, not that exciting), slicing cucumbers to go along with our picklers (that are perfectly fine in a salad), and carrots!
This is the first time that we’ve successfully grown early season carrots and I’m excited. There will also be the first zucchini of the season. I’m not sure how much there will be and it may be part of a choice. We’ll have to see. There will also be lettuce mix, garlic scapes, salad turnips, kale, dandelion greens, sorrel, kohlrabi, fresh garlic and what’s most likely the last of the sugar snap peas. We’re planting more snow peas for the fall. Now that there are carrots this week and you’re still slightly intimidated by the kohlrabi, you can make kohlrabi and carrot slaw!! Just peel and cut the kohlrabi into match sticks. Same for the carrots (except you don’t really need to peel them). Place them in a colander with a teaspoon of salt and let drain for about an hour. You can periodically shake them up to get rid of as much water as you can. Make yourself a mayo based dressing (or a vinegar one, that’s what my wife likes to do). After about an hour, add the carrots and kohlrabi to a large bowl with sliced red onion and toss with the dressing.
Have a great week!