Tag: potatoe

Transplanting is Transformational

The Micro Farm is a “buzz” with activity.

Pollinators are enjoying the black raspberry flowers
Pollinators are enjoying the black raspberry flowers

The strawberry patch is also producing lovely berries this year.  Such a nice crop mean I need to protect the ripe berries from animals nibbling.

The strawberries protected
The strawberries protected

I use a bird netting purchased at a local nursery.  It keeps most of the critters from eating the ripe fruit.

I spent a good deal of the week transplanting seedlings.  One evening while working on the Micro Farm.  I noticed small movements near my neighbor’s shed.  Sure enough two small rabbits.  I knew I needed to do something to protect my tender and young plants.  Fencing is what I needed, but I wanted to avoid the traditional woven metal fence.  A local home store had landscaping timbers on sale, decision made.

New "fencing"
New “fencing”

Hopefully this will keep the rabbits out.  We will have to wait and see.

I transplanted tomatoes, peppers, celery, cabbage, and cauliflower.

Cabbage transplants
Cabbage transplants
Cauliflower transplant
Cauliflower transplant
Tomato transplants
Tomato transplants

I also planted five pounds of seed potatoes, another 75 onion sets, beets, edamame,  popcorn, and carrots.

Growing greens has been a failure so far this season.  So I am tried putting some seed in six-packs to determine the quality of the seed.  The seed produced well.  I In another week I will put them into the ground.

Lettuce seedlings
Lettuce seedlings

As the rain falls tonight.  I am excited to see how the young plants spring to life over the next week.

Enjoy this season, learn from last season, and look forward to next season.

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Harvest Here, Harvest There

Another transition has been reached at the Micro-farm.  Much less weeding and more of a focus on harvesting.  Two big harvests happened this week.

Friends have been giving us beets to pickle the past few years.  I was at a workshop and learned about a variety of beets named “Cylindra” that grows long but not round.  For canning a thinner and less round beet is easier to use.

Mrs. M holding some of the best
Mrs. M holding some of the best beets
The complete beet harvest
The complete beet harvest

We were able to can over nine pints of pickled beets and still had enough to share with neighbors.

The second harvest this week was potatoes.  I was surprised to be picking potatoes, it feels a bit early.  However, the leaves were yellowing some brown and shriveled.  The leaf area had decreased greatly.  I was worrying I something might happen to the potatoes if I did not harvest them.

About twenty pound of potatoes from two pounds of seed potatoe
About twenty pound of potatoes from two pounds of seed potatoes

I think they look really good.  After frying a few up for supper they taste really good too.

Several crops are getting closer to harvest.

Lots of green peppers
Lots of green peppers – two nice bells in the middle           click to enlarge

The peppers have been doing very well this year.  The plants are vigorous and there are lots of flowers.  Many are top-heavy and needed to be staked up.

The popcorn is beginning to tassel.  Ears will be forming soon.

Popcorn tassles
Popcorn tassels

I did not do well providing support for my tomatoes.  Regardless, they are doing well despite me.

My first "reddish" tomato
My first “reddish” tomato

The last bit of work done around the Micro-farm this week was on the raspberry bushes.  The canes that produced fruit earlier this year have turned brown and many of the leaves have died.  So I cut out the old canes to allow the plants to feed only the new canes.  Additionally, on the black raspberries I “tipped” them in hopes they will creat more lateral growth.  Black raspberries clone themselves by growing long canes then the canes lean over and when they touch soil they will send out roots.  Then a new plant is formed.  If I tip them then they will put more energy into fruit production, at least that is the plan.

Tipped black raspberry canes
Tipped black raspberry canes

As you can see it has been busy around the Micro-farm.  I hope you are busy with your garden as well.  I hope you are enjoy the fruits of your labor.

Enjoy this season, learn from last season, and look forward to next season.

 

Decision Time

Decisions now have to be made.  One decision needs to be made quickly.  What will I do?  I am not sure.

I received an email yesterday letting me know that Late Blight had been identified in two different locations within two hundred miles.  Two hundred miles may seem like a bid distance, but Late Blight travels with the wind.  The weather conditions have been good for Late Blight.  Late Blight, known for its destructive power, caused the Irish Potato Famine. Now it attacks potatoes and tomatoes almost every year.  Usually later in the growing year.

Reports of Late Blight this early could mean a difficult finish to the growing season.  I have to determine if I will spray or not spray my tomatoes and potatoes.  Copper Fungicide is the typical defense against Late Blight.  I have an organic copper fungicide so I would remain “organic” but I have been no-spray for two years.

Tomato.  Spray or no spray?
Tomato. Spray or no spray?

This week I added stray around my potatoes.  I have hill-ed the potatoes the best that I can, but it has not been enough.  So I put straw around the plants so any potatoes that grow above the soil hills will be good to eat.

Potatoes with straw around them
Potatoes with straw around them

This is a time of transition at the Micro Farm.  Last year’s fall crops are almost ready to be harvested and summer crops are now starting to dominate.  Garlic leaves are starting yellow.  I will wait to harvest them, hopefully the bulbs are nice and plump.

Garlic
Garlic – you can see the yellow leaves on the bottom.

While the garlic is almost done.  The dry beans are starting to create pods.  So far I like growing dry beans.  I will watch them, but I will not harvest them until the pods are dry. Harvested beans will become a nice pot of baked beans.

Dry beans
Dry beans – a few pods and a few flowers

I noticed several very young peppers while walking through the planting beds.  I watch the peppers at this stage to help guide the pepper fruit.  In the past a few pepper fruit grew between stems, and where either difficult to harvest or had a bizarre shape.  Guiding them when they are young helps prevent this.

Very young peppers
Very young peppers

The temperatures have been really great for the cucumbers.  They seem to have exploded in the past several days.  Looking under the leaves are the beginning of cucumbers.  This variety is reported to be prolific especially if picked regularly.

Young cucumbers
Young cucumbers

The pumpkins look to be doing well.  Last year was a tough pumpkin year.  I am hoping this year will be better.

Pumpkin plants
Pumpkin plants

The weather here in the Northeast US has been hot and humid, and will be for several more days.  Watering and keeping the plants from being heat stressed is my priority.   There is not much rain in the forecast so watering will become the daily routine.

What is your daily routine to help the prevent heat stress and loss?

Enjoy this season, learn from last season, and look forward to next season.