What an exciting week last week! We got started in the greenhouse with transplants–kale and kohlrabi, added electricity to the greenhouse (thanks to Andrew) and did a cooking demo on TV to boot!
Somehow last season we made do with more cold weather and no heat in the greenhouse. This also explains why we had quite a few transplants die on us. This week we’re putting the finishing touches on heat for the transplant greenhouse! We are setting up a barrel stove heater–which is like a cheap wood stove. I’m excited to be able to heat the greenhouse without using gas or electricity. A second layer of plastic and a blower to inflate the layers in between will help to reduce the amount of heat that escapes. These next 10 weeks or so will be critical to maintain minimum temperatures in the greenhouse for healthy transplants! Lets hope it works!
Its strange now that we don’t have anything to harvest! We are lucky that we had spinach and carrots from December up until last week. The big Canton Winter Market cleaned us out this Sunday–in addition to a disease that hit the spinach. I cleaned out the remaining spinach and now just waiting for it to grow back for a second harvest. We replanted one bed with hardy salad mix greens and have yet to see it germinate. I may throw a piece of plastic over the bed to help trap heat for germination. We’re coming up on solar spring here soon– Feb 21st?–when the days start getting long enough again that plants start to kick their growing phase in gear.
With less to do outside at the moment, I’ve buckled down to get all of the planning complete for the year. The largest monkey on my back has been trying to decide what we are doing for hiring this year. There are so many options! I just ran into our friend and neighbor Kris of Old Pine Farm..we are talking about trying to team up and share interns or host WWOOFers. I’m also working on the details of what a full time Assistant Farm Manager would be doing, etc. I’m hoping to get these details out by end of week to hopefully find an awesome candidate or two!
Also, we wrapped up our application with the NRCS EQUIP program and are now patiently waiting to find out if we will be funded for a 30×96′ hoop house! We’ve also decided to go ahead and work on getting organically certified with the USDA. I was on the fence for a while, but I think it will be beneficial in terms of communicating to our customers what our practices are.