Farm Update 06-01-18

Good morning, day, or evening, depending on when you’re reading this. I held off this week’s update so I could hopefully have a better hand on what might be ready, and also to have a better idea on what problems the weather was going to cause me and you.

Most work is progressing as it normally would this time of year. The past couple of years I haven’t opened the stand until near the end of June, so being open so much earlier this year makes things a little more interesting.

Irrigation work will be a priority this week. Besides that, it’s pretty much just the usual prep and planting that goes on this time of year.

A major plant pick up was made from Kerns Nursery this week. The greenhouses I set up, as well as the area where I store the plants waiting to go in the ground were all full. And I mean full. Now it’s down to planting it all.

As stated above, what’s going on is planting. On Thursday this week I managed to set a new personal record for amount planted by hand. I put in 49 flats of plants. My previous best was 32 flats. Needless to say, my back is killing me today.

Over the next few days the “big” crops will go in the ground – Corn, Tomatoes, Zucchini, and Pumpkins. I just need a couple more days of dry, so I can get the plastic mulch laid out for them.

To explain, there are certain crops for which I use the black plastic mulch. Generally, these are the crops that are in for most, if not the whole season. Having the plastic on the ground helps keep the weeds from overtaking the plants, and also limits the water loss due to evaporation.

The ladies are continuing to do well. I’m pretty sure all but one of the chickens are laying. I know one is not because she is sick.

The sick chicken (since named Stinky) was pulled from the coop last week when I spotted her acting strangely. At the time she was suffering from thrush, which is apparently immediately systemic in chickens. Anyway, after beginning the treatment for thrush she responded well and was getting better, when all of a sudden she became much sicker with a secondary intestinal infection. She is undergoing treatment, so she will be kept separated from the flock until the medication “flush out” period ends.

Aside from that bit of excitement the chickens are just being chickens – pecking and scratching, eating, sleeping, and laying eggs. Oh, and occasionally getting up to a bit of mischief, but nothing too bad.

And since I can already hear the questions, yes there are a few chickens to which I have given names. There is, of course, Stinky, the sick chicken. I don’t think I need to explain why she has this temporary name. There is also Spunky, who is a special-needs runty hen (partially blind, somewhat deaf, with a severely malformed beak) that the other chickens peck at and continually torment. She earned her name by being exactly that and surviving despite the constant attacks of the other chickens. Due to Spunky’s problems and the behavior of the other chickens, I have to hand feed her 3 – 4 times per day. Then there is Missus, who got her name as being one of only a handful of other chickens that would even go near Spunky without attacking her. She was also the only chicken that would perch for the night with Spunky. The last chicken so far to get a name is Little Red. She had somehow escaped my attention and is now probably the smallest of the chickens. I try to make sure when I am feeding Spunky that I also get her some extra food.

There will be small quantities of a few veg items this week, in addition to the eggs, preserves, honey, and maple syrup. Please be sure to check out the What’s Available page for the most current listings.

Thanks again to all who came by the stand this past week. I would also like to apologize to those who took the time to come by on Monday, due to the holiday, thinking I would be open. Please understand that this is still very early in the season, and that I am only running limited hours so I can get all my work accomplished.

Hope everyone has a great week.