This family work day was designated as fall planting, but before you can plant for the fall you need to spend some time harvesting the summer.
We had all had a family meal together with the Inca corn just before leaving for Seattle. That corn is the best blend of sweet and hearty corn I have ever tasted and I am sure we will be planting it again next year. But harvests come in waves so
One of the major adjustments I have been going through with gardening at Sunflower River is learning the differences from gardening in New England. Some of what is different is the climate, but the other major difference is the process of remediating the soil. The area we chose to garden first was by all accounts (see Bernallio county aerial photography) a parking lot for dead trucks. So the soil has needed some major help. Part of the problem is clay, hard packed clay. Now back to those carrots, I started to ‘pull’ carrots. Imagine my New England gardening sensibilities (which include nice moist dirt) when I pulled on the greens and ‘snap’ went the carrot – still in the ground. Ok – I knew we had clay. So I get out some tools to loosen the soil. Then I start pulling on the little bit of carrot poking out of the ground, and ‘snap’ went the top half of the carrot. At this point I have only half of the first carrot – and a lowering level of patience. Well with a bunch more trial and error I found I could twist the carrots out and get a whole carrot – but only after loosing the soil and wiggling the carrot. Needless to say this took a bit of time and after dealing with the first row I decided the second row would be quite happy to grow for another week or two.
Once the harvesting was done it was on to planting. The south end of our garden still needs soil help – and at the advice of
We also put in our fall lettuces, radishes, swiss chard, and cauliflower. But only after turning the soil which was full of wonderful roots from the summer crops in that row.
Each year we add more dirt to our clay simply by working the soil.
Besides all of that
I haven’t even mentioned the great amount of progress that Rev, Kit, and our guest Evan made on the coyote fencing!
Family work days have become a great way for all of us to spend some time working on projects that don’t need many hands, and working together certainly brings the sunflower stewards closer to each other. I was very grateful for coming home to one of these types of days. It also was one of the most productive days I personally have had on the farm – and that is always a great feeling.
May your today be productive, and may you taste the sweetness of tiredness from a day well spent.