It's hard to believe...
....but this is our last CSA pick-up in August. Yessiree folks, the Minnesota State Fair is in full swing, just a week away from September, then Labor Day, the Fall Equinox, and our likely first frost. You had better believe these here Farmers are a prayin' for a nice long beautiful Fall... just like last year. ((sigh))
A report from the fields...
Well, the exciting thing to report is that our sweet corn crop was a great success, as our full share members know since they got their first big batch last week. Half-shares, you are ON this week, with a nice big bag of sweet corn to eat in a frenzy or more preferably, eat some, but quickly blanch and freeze the rest, or make salsa, or whatever!
It was a close call this week though, as I went out to the Sweet Corn on an early Monday morning, coffee in hand, one eye propped open... only to scream a horrible battle cry against the Raccoons who had eaten a 1/4 of the corn crop overnight.. those greedy, over zealous, little buggers... well I put a quick end to that by harvesting all the corn a little earlier than planned, and left the raccoons to enjoy their bloated, distended belly's..
So today looks like it will sadly bring the close to our tomato season a few weeks early. One of the casualties of 8" rainfall we had back in early July, followed by the weeks of horribly humid weather. This weather pattern is prime time for certain types of tomato diseases, specifically blight, which heirloom tomatoes have little protection against. Late Blight swept through our tomato patch like the hordes of Genghis Khan sweeping over the ancient world. We are proud of our tomatoes though.. despite the scourge, they produced an admirable amount of tomatoes.
Both our eggplants and bell peppers are FINALLY starting to flower... they should both have been putting on fruit for well over a month now, but the plants have been behaving very oddly. I have postulated many causes, but I feel the prime candidate is actually the excessive heat and humidity we have had this summer.. both peppers and eggplants will abort their flowers when stressed out by excessive heat. The fact that now that it has cooled off, most of the plants are producing flowers, seems to support this hypothesis. Though it still sounds like a great research topic for the cold winter months.
One thing that has been really well is our cover cropping mixes which we are using to enhance soil health and fertility for next years vegetable production area. I have planted out a mix of about a dozen different plant species that work and improve the soil in a variety of ways (otherwise known as a Cover Crop Cocktail..!).. Of course the pigs and chickens will be incorporated into these fields come September so that they can snack upon all the amazing goodies we have planted in their, while dropping their mobile fertility units all over.. ;-)
The Chef is out for the week...
.... due to Hog Roast Fiesta preparations and our own cooking for said fiesta.. gonna forgo recipe chat this week.. more recipes to come though!!