The End of Spring

The older flock of laying hens moved in the night to their new pasture. It's always exciting to wake up in a new place.

The older flock of laying hens moved in the night to their new pasture. It’s always exciting to wake up in a new place.

Summer is here at last, and so we have cranked into high gear. I haven’t posted for a few weeks, because of the shift into hectic mode, but we did complete the Spring season successfully, with lots of tasty greens and a touch of rhubarb—our first harvest!

We took a good, hard look at what was left, though, and decided that we would not complete our two weeks of winter make-up as planned. We just do not have enough to make a successful weekly harvest, twice. We have a lot of a few things, and so we are going to farmers markets, but no shares until the Summer season starts June 18. Instead, we have sent out vouchers to everyone who took part in our last winter season. You can use your voucher at a farmers market to buy produce or eggs from us, or save it and apply the value to a future CSA purchase. We really feel like this is the best for our subscribers—and it’s your choice.

We are ramping up for the first week of Summer! The peas are blooming, which means sugar snaps and shelling peas are only a few weeks away. We’ve got fresh patches of greens growing steadily in this early June warmth, and we’re still looking ahead at what promises to be a great season.

I am working on getting the email out there to confirm, but if you’re looking and I’m slow, the first week of the Summer CSA is June 18th. The first Saturday pickup will be June 22nd. Look for an email this week from me, and if you don’t get one, pester me. This is a very busy time of year, especially before school gets out.

The cut-flower garden is a bit behind, because we weren’t able to plant during the rainy spell in May, but we are catching up and expect some blooms by the end of June. The u-pick peas should be ready around the end of June as well, and an extra-early patch of green beans in early July.

Cosmo can't resist snuggling baby birds. And baby turkeys are just SO sweet.

Cosmo can’t resist snuggling baby birds. And baby turkeys are just SO sweet.

The baby turkeys arrived last week, and they have settled in. We are taking deposits for Thanksgiving now, so reserve yours soon to avoid Turkey Frenzy 2013—that mad panic that happens around the end of October, when everyone realizes that they don’t have their special bird lined up yet and there are none to be found. We have about 20 left unspoken-for. Our first fryer butchering day is approaching soon, but we still have quite a few birds available for later harvests, especially the August and September dates.

We planted pasture on the north side of the farm this year, to let this 3-acre piece rest. The pasture is up and needs to be mowed before we put the cows on, and it's time to get the fence up!

We planted pasture on the north side of the farm this year, to let this 3-acre piece rest. The pasture is up and needs to be mowed before we put the cows on, and it’s time to get the fence up!

We are anxiously awaiting the cows to calve. Juniper is due first—June 30, and Dulce is due with her first calf about two weeks later. Beauty is pregnant, but we are unsure of her due date. Sometime before the end of August is the best estimate, but this will be her 12th calf, so we trust that she knows what she’s doing. The newly-planted cow pasture is nearly ready for cows, so we’re mowing it now and getting the fence put up. You may ask, “Why mow if the cows are going there to eat it?” There are two answers: 1. Because the grass is still a bit thin, and cutting it is like pruning, and will make it get bushier, thicker, and softer. 2. Because cows don’t like tall, pokey grass. They like it soft and about 6-8″ long.

David, my bee mentor, dropped off three of his hives to take advantage of our abundant bee forage. He likes Mondrian.

David, my bee mentor, dropped off three of his hives to take advantage of our abundant bee forage. He likes Mondrian.

My honeybee mentor, David brought down some hives to take advantage of our bee forage—mostly blackberry. He may be bringing another three hives down in the coming weeks, so keep an eye out. You can’t miss his style.

The blackberries are blooming about two weeks early, but the honeybees aren't interested yet. It hasn't been warm enough to get the nectar flowing. Bumblebees are visiting but just for pollen. We need just a few more days above 70° for the nectar to flow.

The blackberries are blooming about two weeks early, but the honeybees aren’t interested yet. It hasn’t been warm enough to get the nectar flowing. Bumblebees are visiting but just for pollen. We need just a few more days above 70° for the nectar to flow.

We had an amazing Locust bloom this year, stronger and sweeter-smelling than I can remember it being in many years. I stole two frames of honey from my own hives to try and capture it before the bees mix it with blackberry blossom. The blackberries are blooming already, but there’s no nectar yet, so no honey.

We're doing our part to spread the word about the campaign to label genetically modified food in Washington. It will be on the November ballot. Let us know if you want a $1 button or if you need more information! YES ON 522!

We’re doing our part to spread the word about the campaign to label genetically modified food in Washington. It will be on the November ballot. Let us know if you want a $1 button or if you need more information! YES ON 522!

We are actively working on the Yes on 522 campaign—Washington is working on a rule that would establish mandatory labeling of GMO food. Don’t you want to know if the milk, wheat, corn, soy, rice, canola, and sugar in your food have been genetically modified? There are others, including cotton and fuel oil plants that are being manipulated as well, but they aren’t turned into food. Please ask us if you want more information or a $1 button.

What are the chances this would roll up behind the farm?

What are the chances this would roll up behind the farm?

And one more photo, just for fun. Spelled right and everything!

Have a great week, enjoy the sun, and get ready for summer produce!

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9 responses to “The End of Spring

  1. that train shot is amazing!!!! What luck. Patron Saint of graffiti has visited you. Don’t take that lightly.

  2. So great to meet you this morning, Shelley! Love the blog, and being able to keep up on all the happenings. I’ll get my app. to you Monday, and am looking forward to those sugar peas 🙂

  3. I`d like 5 buttons, next time I see you

    Date: Sat, 8 Jun 2013 18:11:48 +0000 To: nancyellencorr@hotmail.com

  4. Catherine L. Shaheen

    We were wondering when we can collect our week(s) from the ones that were missed last season?

    Best, Cathy

    • We are not going to make up the two missed weeks in produce, because we don’t feel like we have enough variety in quantity to do so. Instead I emailed everyone a voucher to be used towards eggs, produce from our farm at a farmers market, or towards purchase of another farm subscription. Let me know if you didn’t receive your voucher.

  5. Ha, ha, I love the chicky-booms checking out the new pasture 🙂 Cosmo and the baby turkey are pretty darn cute too. Looking forward to veggies on Tuesday!

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