I took Gaelic for a semester, and I can say that there are absolutely no words I remember other than "uisce beatha" - the term for whiskey. This term sticks in my mind not because I ever use it, but because its' literal translation is "water of life". When in an Irish pub, this might seem truthful; however, today as we ran irrigation through our new drip system that Cale designed to better utilize available reservoir water, "water of life" seemed the appropriate sentiment as we watched this melted snow that had accumulated over the past six months bring its' life-sustaining power to our field. Although we have always used drip irrigation as our primary means of irrigating our field, we had to use the furrow irrigation method when we used water other than domestic. To dramatically simplify all of this, we now have the means to use water from the Mesa in our drip system and can run it in all zones in our field for hours on end. It is so efficient and conserves so much water and allows us to give the deep drink of water that our plants need in intensive phases of growth - forget the whiskey, it truly is the water of life. How thankful we were to see this new system that we took somewhat of a gamble on when investing in it as we budgeted over the winter come to successful fruition. It brings us such a sense of relief knowing we no longer will have to flood, at least not anytime in our near future.
In the field, it feels incredible to be out there with these amazing growing conditions - temps in the low to mid 70s, abundant sunshine, a light breeze, and soil that to the touch is subtly moist from rains last week. Today, I seeded our summer squash and cucumbers; tomorrow, I'll begin transplanting tomatoes into the hoophouse, and later this week I'll be seeding our final carrot bed until fall and hope to get some haricot vert beans in the ground. Wow! Planting season has arrived. I say this with the slightest bit of hesitancy though as COLD, near freezing, temperatures are once again forecasted to drop into this area over the weekend. For this reason, we'll be holding off on transplanting out our field tomatoes and peppers. Although patience has never been much of my virtue, I know that as much as I want to put them out NOW, the plants will be appreciative not to have to spend the night in 30 -something degree temperatures.
Starting next week, market season will have arrived! Because of this, our ordering schedule will change because we will be harvesting on Thursdays now. Our email newsletter will be sent out on Sundays with our online store opening at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday evenings and now closing on Wednesdays at 6:00 p.m. Veggie pick-up will remain the same, Saturdays from 9 until noon. Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions on this.
From the garden this week, we have stunning red and green butterhead lettuces. We have very limited quantities of arugula and lots of deliciousspicy greens mix. Salad greens continue to come from our hoophouses, and we have the first field kale of the season, also somewhat limited in quantity but an absolutely gorgeous blend of red Russian, scarlet, and blue curled scotch varieties. Also, this week one of my truly favorite spring crops has arrived -hakurei turnips! I am not exaggerating when I tell you that they are buttery and creamy in texture and so darn sweet in flavor. If you've not had hakurei turnips before, they are COMPLETELY unlike other turnips. They are snowball white in color and delicious raw or roasted on salads. These are mostly baby in size and the greens are immaculate, also wonderful for sautéing. We also have our first radishes to offer from the field. We picked some this morning, and they are divine. Fresh herbs are also starting to come in! This week we have lemon balm, parsley, and sage - cilantro and sorrel are soon to come. Next on our mind are peas, sugar snap and snow. It should only be a few short weeks until these grace our plates. We continue to have starter plants available for your home gardens, too. Starting this weekend, we will have tomatoes in addition to brassicas. These are $2.50-5/plant (depending on type) and are from all organic seed, grown in OMRI approved soil. We'll have these available on Saturday morning at veggie pick up or feel free to send us an email if you have questions on varieties, etc.
And with this, we wish each of you a wonderful week ahead! Thank you for your support of our farm and local, organic agriculture! It is our great privilege and honor to be growing food for you.
In gratitude, Melissa & Cale