A truck full of limestone sweeps our fields like a zamboni turning them a ghostly pale. I watch from the edge of the treeline in my Jeep with a pair of muddy dogs panting from a full throttle run and impromptu plunge into the creek. The leaves are just about at peak foliage and the warm tones of oaks and birch contrast with the smoky cloud of limestone. After obtaining the results of our soil tests we ordered about 2000 lbs per acre of dolomitic lime to raise the PH and “sweeten” the soil for next spring’s planting. Currently we are also trying to procure truck loads of composted manure from a neighboring dairy farm to increase organic matter, nitrogen, and phosphorous into soil.
The farm looks like a patchwork quilt of the few plots which we are still harvesting and those in various stages of cover crop or bare soil and a solid acre of strawberry and garlic plants.. There are a few plots of summer such as cherry tomatoes and others which we are currently pulling up stakes and ripping up plastic mulch. Others are in full production such as cauliflower, brussel sprouts, and broccoli as well as beets, bok choi, lettuce, and baby greens. I am looking forward to wrapping things up for this season and looking forward to the next.
Over the past few weeks we have been meeting at a picnic table beneath a large sycamore tree and comparing notes. With nearly one full season under our belts and still fresh in our minds it is the best time to capture everyone’s perspective especially where we plan to make changes before the dormancy of winter erases what we have learned. We are working plot by plot discussing which varieties worked well this season and which did not. We discuss plant spacing, number of plantings, and days between. There are many which we want to give more space such as cucumbers. Also there are some which we will try and manage a steadier stream of production by either smaller more frequent plantings such as heirloom and cherry tomatoes, or more plantings spaced further apart such as zucchinis.
We are looking forward to having folks out to the farm on November 20th for a bonfire, farm tour, and to celebrate our one year anniversary. Bring some blankets, chairs, footballs and frisbies. We have lots to celebrate and plenty to look forward to as well. Have a great week everyone.