Welcome Back for a new season! It’s been good to have a change of pace for the last two weeks, to have some time to gather with family and friends and celebrate Christmas. But it is also good to be back to market and seeing all our wonderful customers again. The time has flown by. We were hoping to make progress finishing our laundry room renovations that we started over two years ago, but predictably the time went too fast and there is more work left to do before the drawers are built or the doors can be hung. And so many other things demanding our time and attention. Perhaps there is still hope before spring to make more progress.
The weather the last few weeks has been a wild roller coster ride too. Right now the mud is pleasantly frozen, but we have had a range from three day winter storm that had roads closed and lettuce frozen in the corners of the greenhouse, to a thaw so warm last week that it feels like we should be planting outside soon. In a way the wild swings make me think of last winter when we would have a winter blast about every two weeks, but so far the results for growing have been remarkably better this year. Still we’re trying harder to be prepared for the cold snaps with extra row cover in the greenhouses. Not enough to protect everything in a wild winter storm, but hopefully a better use of our available resources to keep things going through increasingly variable growing conditions.
Besides the day to day work of keeping this place running, this time of year we spend a lot of time working through our season plan. We’re not always the best at following the plan once the season starts, but it does help us know how much seed to order, and at least provides a first sanity check on what we expect to plant for the season. This last season was perhaps the worst drought we have experienced in our 11 years here. We tried our best with irrigation, and overall did an ok job of growing most things anyway. Potatoes were unfortunately at the bottom of the priority list for the water, and their yield suffered accordingly. Additionally, we had a hard time finding enough space with available irrigation to plant our fall crops. Golden beets and rainbow carrots went in late, and too close to the tree line, so the yields were poor there as well. So in our continuing quest to do what we do better, we are trying to reduce the total area we use to better match our ability to irrigate it. It’s hard going through the plan and figuring out what we don’t plant as much of, but hopefully it will make us better prepared for whatever the season brings us.
CSA this week we have Rainbow Carrots, Cabbage, Huckleberry Gold Potatoes, Lettuce Mix, Onions, and Rutabaga and Garlic.
Before the break we promised updates on what we were planning for our Dufferin customers. We’ve had a lot of moving pieces to work with the last few weeks, so we are still working on what that should look like within the limitations of hopefully not burning ourselves out any more than we are already. Whatever we do, it will likely be on Wednesdays, and we aren’t ready to make it happen this week. Hopefully we’ll have more news next week.
Well we’ve got a crew in today to get caught up on a few things, and the animals need to be fed, so we’d best get to work. Always something going on.
Until next week,
Nathan and Aleta Klassen