Summer Week 20: End of Summer

This is the time of year when honey robbing takes place. We've put entrance reducers on the bee hives so the girls have less doorway to guard and defend. But here you can see two dead yellowjackets and one dead honeybee. The casualties of war.

• “German Butterball” Potatoes
“Baby Pam” Sugar Pumpkin
• Broccoli
• Napa Cabbage
Collard Greens or Swiss Chard
Red, Golden, or Chioggia Beets
• Garlic

Click on the links above for information and recipes about these crops.
Winter Squashes

The Summer Season has come to an end. It’s been a hard season for us. The late, late spring and lack of summer heat made growing tricky. Our winter squash yield is 1/3 of what it was last year, and last year wasn’t great either. What is the solution? More greenhouses or less squash? We will decide this winter, but I really enjoy eating squash in the winter, so it’s not a hard choice. We have the biggest crop of roots that we’ve had in years though, and a beautiful crop of broccoli that we will be able to harvest for several more weeks. And a big cabbage patch, full of swelling….cabbages.

We hope you’ve enjoyed the summer season, and if you’re not continuing on with us through the winter season, we hope you will be back next season. Every year we learn more, and every year there are new challenges. This is the ongoing learning experience that is farming.

Then hens aren't laying anymore. They are molting, and therefore are becoming naked. How can you lay eggs when you're losing all your feathers?

The hens haven’t laid an egg in weeks. They are molting. I like to think of it as genetic memory—just like their migrating relatives, they need to shed their old feathers in the fall and grow a new, strong set. Growing feathers takes a lot of energy and protein—what are feathers but protein? Eggs are protein, too, and a girl can’t make feathers and eggs at the same time. Besides, why would you want to hatch babies in the coldest part of the year. And that is what egg-laying is all about. Making babies. So, usually there are few eggs in the fall and winter, unless you leave the lights on them all day and night.  But then they never get a rest, and they burn out. But watch out in the spring, because they come back from egg-laying vacation ready to make up for lost time. Then we eat eggs every day.

If you still have an egg punch card, you can keep it and use it next spring. They don’t expire. If you really need a refund, we’ll be able to take care of it in February.

One response to “Summer Week 20: End of Summer

  1. The chickens looked happy and fully fluffed when Killy and I visited over the weekend to find some pumpkins for Halloween. The ducks were especially hillarious, chasing eachother around the mud puddles.

    We made a great pumpkin chili the other night with the green turban squash and some ground goat from the farmers market, onions, white beans, and chicken stock. We also made Yakisoba with shrimp, napa cabbage, broccoli, and carrots. Yakisoba is great – you can get the noodles at almost any grocery store, and stir fry veggies and your choice of protein (tofu, chicken, shrimp, pork, edamame etc). A great week night meal! I’ll be posting some more hearty fall/winter holiday recipes soon. We’re looking forward to making squash rolls, but ran out of time during our busy Halloween 😦

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