Hello Farm Friends,
You might not know it by the 90 degree temperatures, but the farm is officially in fall/winter transition mode. You have not seen us at the Franklin Market for a while simply because we have been too busy to attend. So what have we been up to? Take a deep breath and I will attempt to give you a run down. You can also check out our photo page for a few snapshots.
First of all, Jim and his Dad were able to get the fall hay crop cut and baled so that fall fertilizers could be applied and yummy green grass can be stockpiled for fall/winter grazing for the cattle.
Two of our hoophouses are empty now after ripping out cherry tomatoes, eggplant, peppers and basil. We found all kinds of cool critters when we tore those huge bushes out. Quite the science exhibit with praying mantis, walking sticks, HUGE spiders (yeah I knew those were in there I was just in denial), lots of toads and frogs, grasshoppers and crickets. You name it we probably saw it. The hoops are in the process of getting their winter coats of compost and remaking the beds. Once that is complete we will reseed and transplant fall/winter crops and be back in growing mode for the winter CSA and winter markets.
We also vacated for a couple of days to Alabama to a place that normally has lovely waterfalls. I bragged and bragged to the boys what it would be like. When we arrived at the falls they simply were NOT. Really more like a drip, drip in a big huge hole, but it was still fun to get away. We also rode on a train in Chattanooga which probably was the highlight of the trip for everyone. When we arrived back home it was time for the annual Antique Tractor Show in Eagleville, which is always a hoot and a hit. So much fun just watching the boys (all of them big and little) have a great time!
Back to the farm where today Kels and I worked bees getting equipment switched out and snugging them in for winter. It is important to make sure they have plenty of honey to make it through the winter. It is also important to make sure they are extremely healthy before they go into SLOW mode for the winter. We are doing our best to keep them healthy with essential oils and plenty of fresh nectar and pollen to collect. Jim has planted close to three acres of buckwheat and they are working it hard. Good honey stores now means they will be strong (hopefully) and ready to work come spring to produce lots of yummy honey!
This past weekend we fertilized and shaped the strawberry beds with compost. Then we planted those berries while visions of shortcake danced in our heads! This year we are trying a few Sweet Charlies to see if they will mature a bit earlier. The plants look good so hopefully they will be happy in the hoops over the winter.
The fall calves are weaned and will be turned out with our herd in a few more days. Thomas, Jim's Dad, is almost finished with fall calving season and we have worked most of those little guys which means things will be a bit easier come spring weaning time.
Lots of other things on the agenda, like getting organized enough to attempt to grow microgreens for the first time, starting lots and lots of seeds in the greenhouse, ordering fall garden fertilizers and planting cover crops on our bare ground for protection. So much to do in order to be ready for winter and I haven't even mentioned the garlic or lavender!
We should be at the market on the 25th of September and perhaps things will be back to normal from that point on. We hope to be able to attend the Tuesday and Saturday Franklin Markets as well as Stones River as we head into fall.
Have a great week and enjoy the somewhat fall-ish weather!
Last call for our Winter CSA
We are now taking reservations for shares in our winter CSA for 2010-2011. We are pretty much full in Franklin and have a few more shares for farm pickup if anyone is interested. For more information please visit Winter CSA Info site, or send us an email.
Last call for Grass-fed Lamb
We currently have two lambs left to offer this winter. If you are interested in purchasing a freezer lamb, please send us an email.
Stones River Market, Murfreesboro fresh food option
We are proud to be members of the Stones River Market, a member of locallygrown.net. This is a great advancement for farmers allowing customers to become members of an "online" market, choosing products from many area farmers, but picking up their orders in one location, with one bill and your food all ready to go! Please visit . Stones River Market Locally Grown to see this week's list of available items. Orders can be placed Sunday-Tuesday (you get an email telling you the market is open after you sign up!) Delivery in Murfreesboro is in the downtown area around Cannonsburg/Hoopers Supply. For more information please visit the website and contact the market manager!
Franklin Farmers Market
The Franklin Farmers Market is open for the SUMMER season. Hours of operation are 8-1 each Saturday.
The Franklin Farmers Market is also open on Tuesday afternoons from 3-6:30. Tuesday is an excellent opportunity to get some mid week veggies OR just miss the crowds on Saturday.
Farm Life Blog
Is it illegal?
Farm Life Blog
Photo of the Week
Photos of what we have been up to the past few weeks!
To see the photo of the week use this hotlink Photo of the Week
Have a great week!