Wednesday, August 26, 2009

What's New At The Farm? 8/26/09

Three quarters of an inch of rain over the weekend helped out the crops and provided moisture for the land we seeded down last week. We seeded down about twenty acres, mostly oats and red clover but a couple of other mixtures as well; perennial ryegrass with oats and Austrian Winter peas with oats as a nurse crop. The moisture will get them started and they should have loads of time to get growth before cold weather starts.

We started harvesting tomatoes for seed last week. We harvested Washington Cherry and will pick Gold Nugget this week. It'll be good to get a couple out of the way before we get into the full swing of harvesting. The determinate tomatoes are always first, followed closely by melons and then indeterminate tomatoes, and then squash and pumpkins followed by cucumbers. By then it will be cool and crisp November.

Crops being harvested this week are the usual cukes and zukes, sweet corn, melons and peppers. The tomato trellising continues and I think we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. The tomatoes are getting quite tall and bearing fruit on all but the late tomatoes. Lots of cherry tomatoes ripening now.

I don't think anyone minds seeing cooler weather coming; at least drier weather. It's been so humid this summer, not hot and humid but cool and humid. Perfect disease weather and perfect working weather but not very good growing conditions. At least in the fall the weather is somewhat more predictable.

This time of year in a typical year is when we have some slack time. No, we're not lounging around but we usually have some time between crop maintenance and harvest. Time to get the harvesting equipment ready, the greenhouses cleaned out and all the tools and supplies we use to harvest ready. This year between the weather and the Late Blight, we haven't had nor will have any slack time. The equipment will have to get ready as we go along.

Normally this week in August is my summer week's vacation. I think I'll take a couple of days off but not the whole week. We went to the coast on Sunday last weekend and think we'll take the dogs and go to Sears Island this week. Sears island is a small island off the coast of Searsport, uninhabited and peaceful. No gift shops or restaurants; take what you need and enjoy the scenery.

Until next week, enjoy what's left of the summer.



Heidi said...

I hope you had a good time at Sears Island. Oh, and Happy Birthday! A little birdie (named Peg) told me.

Kelly said...

The island sounds wonderful, we used to enjoy Bailey's I sland before the kids came along.

Anonymous said...

no questions, always helpful information .
Long time customer with a beef!
well not really, I take buying and using seeds knowing all the hazards along the way.
No blame, but you should know that I had very unusual success with the "grape" tomatoes.
The plants were huge with termendous flowering. And thats where everything stopped.
No fruit. Just drying up of the flowers, and they fell off.
Plants are healthy and still flowering, but that's as far as it goes.
Also a pear shaped tomato had very limited success. Still waiting for them to go larger and ripen.
The other varieties I bought this year like the beefeater was really great.
Living in Southern California in the valley with temps in the 100;s for days at a time make it difficult to grow without some shade.
Am thinking of erecting shade
netting like they use at the nursery might help me next year.
p.s. Had many bees helping me this year., but rarely saw the bees at the tomato plants.
I even tried bee attractant, and blossom set., and still nothing.
very puzzling. this is the first time this has happened to me in 25 yeas of planting.

anyone has an answer , please respond at :
allan graupman
los angeles