Sunday, October 23, 2011

Almost done!

It is hard to believe that the farm year is almost over. In just one week, we will close until next June. It has been a good year. The blueberries, raspberries, and kotata blackberries did really well this year, with bushes loaded with jewel like fruit. The strawberries, pears, plums, and Asian pears were not good, but we accept that every year will have it's crops that do not do so well. Pumpkins grew pretty well, but we didn't get many large ones. The pie pumpkins did really well, so I need to get busy and freeze some for use during the winter. I also have lots and lots of the apples we grew that need to be sauced and canned. So, even though the farm works is drawing to a close, there is still more than enough work to keep me busy all winter long!

Even though I enjoy the winter, I do miss the customers and the hustle and bustle of the store. By the time June rolls around, I am more than ready to be up and running again! This year, we will be selling baked goods at the Salem Indoor Market, on 12th and Rural Street. This is such a great little market, with fresh honey, freshly roasted coffee, crafts, hazelnuts, and winter produce. Graham and Robert run the booth, and they always bring home lots of good food which they trade baked goods for. The coffee is especially good, strong and fresh.

During the winter, this blog will switch from pictures of beautiful ripe fruit and children cavorting in golden sunshine to pictures of grey skies, plants lying dormant, and rain sodden ground. Children will be bundled up against the cold, and our times outside will consist of brisk walks with faces down turned to avoid the wind. However, there will still be plenty of activity on this little farm, as we repair equipment, catch up on paperwork, take a business class or two, and pore over seed catalogs, dreaming of warm earth and green growing things.

Friday, October 14, 2011

On being a farmer boy!

 Being a farmer boy is a full time job! There are rocks to dig up and throw. This is a very big job!
 And, then there are the mud puddles. I have to stomp in each one to make sure my boots don't leak.
 I also have to keep track of all the frogs on the farm. I thought this one should live inside, but my mom didn't see things my way.
With all of this work for me to do, it is no wonder I am exhausted! I am so tired that I will literally fall asleep anywhere. Well, my dad is waiting for me to ride on the tractor with him. There is always work to be done, always someone who needs me. There is never a dull moment around here!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Fall on the farm

The garden is still lovely, although the colors are fading and no new flowers are blooming. I saw a hummingbird this afternoon, probably the last one until spring. This afternoon as I took my walk through the garden, I missed the humming of the bees in the background. 
 The potato crop was a success, and I should have quite a few to get us through the winter. These are the Yukon Golds, not pictured are the Cranberries, French Fingerlings, and Russian Bananas. We also planted russets, but their plants have not died back all the way yet, and I don't think they are ready to dig.
 Apples for sale at the store! Most of these were grown right on our farm, and this is the first year we have had a good crop of them. I have several boxes of apples waiting for me, as soon as I get a chance I will be turning them in to apple sauce.
 Winter squash! The butternut are my favorite for making in to squash fries, but the bright orange Uchikuri are delicious as well. I usually roast them with butter, and then in the last 15 minutes of cooking I top them with a mixture of browned butter, breadcrumbs, garlic, and parmesan cheese. So, so delicious!
Pumpkins are now ripe, and although it is not a great crop, we are glad they ripened in time for the pumpkin patch to open! Last year, it was the second week of October before they were ready. My son is our harvesting pie pumpkins right now, and I am hoping to actually can some this year. I love pumpkin goodies, especially pumpkin hazelnut bread! I am making myself hungry now, but it is time to finish my coffee and get back to kitchen clean up! Happy Fall!