The weather the past week has been quite interesting. We’ve had several nights with the temperature below freezing, a bit of rain now and then, 7.2 mm one day, and a very small amount of snow on the ground for a brief time one morning. But then on Saturday it was quite nice and the temperature was at a high of 19.6° C. Most of the tree leaves are fallen now and we are bound for a freeze up before too long.
We have gotten along quite nicely with the shed over the CSA veggie pickup area but there is still much to do on it. We have the four corner posts up with beams running between them and bracing at two corners and the ridge pole is up but will have to come down again for finishing. So maybe 10 % of the work is done, but that is significant, and with a tarp temporarily thrown over we have an area protected somewhat from wind and rain. But we are bound for a freeze up before long so we have to hustle a bit faster.
We are also nicely started on planting the garlic though this is very late and we would have liked to have had it in the ground much earlier than this, the middle of September would have been much better. But the end result should be the same. We put down some well composted manure first, followed by making of the rows. Two passes with the wheel hoe with a plow attachment, a pass with the other wheel hoe with the chisel point, a pass with a single tooth cultivator on a handle to get the groove worked deep and then the individual garlic cloves will be planted at a spacing in the row of about 5 inches. The rows are planted about a foot apart, three rows to a bed with the beds 4 foot on centre. After the garlic is planted they will be roughly covered if not already and then a thin layer of leaves, followed by more compost and then a good thick layer of straw for mulch.
This week marks the last week for the CSA (Community Shared Agriculture) weekly vegetable pick ups here at the farm. We had 19 weeks of pick ups in this our 23rd season of doing a veggie CSA. Once we have finished the CSA we will concentrate on getting the garlic planted and the pick up shelter, the shed, finished so as to keep out snow and rain. Over the winter it will serve a s a storage building housing the gardening tools, hoes and rakes etc., as well as some firewood and lumber. In the later spring once we’ve completed our tool shed it will be cleared and readied for CSA veggie pickups which will hopefully begin late May. We must also, this fall, get some of the veggie beds prepared for next spring, Some soil preparation may be done and a lot of straw mulch put down for over winter. This will mean that the beds will be ready for seeding or planting into with specific veggies right away in the spring with the only work needed being to pull back a narrow strip of mulch, draw a narrow groove for seeding or if doing transplants, just transplant directly into the soil underneath the mulch.
We are keen on trying another method for making a semi permanent bed using small sticks and branches laid on the ground with a bit of manure and compost with a lot of mulch, again done in the fall, settled over the winter , ready in the spring for planting.
Gotta go, much to be done!