Saturday, October 30, 2010

What? It's Over Already?

 That's right folks, today is the last Bayview market of the season!  (Well, until we start the indoor holiday market on Nov. 27th!). But for the main season, well, today is it.  And with the close of the markets and shortening of the days comes a lot of reflection on the season - the good, the bad and the tasty.
So here's a quick run, down, by season touching on some of the highlights...
The Winter into Spring - Jan through May.  Was wet.  That's pretty normal.  Did have some quite warm/dry spells in early March, enough to get some plantings in of early greens.  Planted lettuce (about 3000 plants); sewed 3000 row feet of greens like mustards, arugula, spinach, planted about 1500 row feet of brassicas (cauliflower, cabbages, broc); planted about an acre of potatoes and about 1/2 acre of onions.  Weeded and fertilized 8000+ garlic plants.  Planted three acres of dry beans.  A 1/2 acre of winter squash.  Worked on building a 20x48 foot greenhouse.
The Summer - June through Sept.   Cooler and wetter than many of past years.  Although not an unusual summer for this Whidbey Island born and raised girl.  Finished the greenhouse and planted out 70 some tomato plants.  Seeded basil.  Weeded (or at least tried to), fertilized and bug-managed all the crops previously noted as planted (eek!).  Harvested garlic in July.  Sprayed compost tea.  Re-planted multiple successions of many plants - lettuce 2x (about 4000 plants),  planted about 4000 row feet of fall/winter veggies. Picked and picked and picked some more!
The Fall into Winter - September until now.  Wet, wet fall!  Our almost ALWAYS dry and beautiful summer we got buckets of rain causing havoc with all sorts of curing crops.  Harvested about 6000 pounds of potatoes, a couple more 1000 pounds still to be dug.  Beginning pulling dry beans and attempting to dry them in complicated fashions involving a semi-dump truck, lots of fans and a propane heater.  Onions same story - came out of the field WET.  Garlic almost all molded in the barn til we created a "dry room" installed we a heater and de-humidifier.  Amazingly enough, we got some winter squash all the cool summer meant production was off probably 50 percent. Planted another 2000 heads of lettuce for late fall harvest (not quite ready yet).  Kept picking.  And harvesting.  And picking.
What's Left?  Well..we start planting garlic this week and lots of that to do!  We have over-wintering greens to plant into the hoophouse, rows to be weeded and mulched for the winter and lots of cover crop to seed.  Still got some potatoes left to dig. Oh...and about another 1000+ dry beans to thresh, clean and bag! 
That's the great thing about farming in the Pacific Northwest - the fun never stops!
And now, since I know you are all drying to know what we'll be bringing to market is the list:
* Dry Beans - Rockwells and Black Cocos!  These sold out FAST last week so we stocked up quite a bit more for this week. 
* Mesclun bags
* Arugula bags
* Leek bunches
* Winter squash
* Potatoes - including our 10 lb storage bags at reduced pricing!
* Garlic - stock up your pantry and we will still have a bit of seed garlic as well - not to late to plant!
* Jerusalem Artichokes (aka sunchokes).  A tasty fall/winter crop!
* Beets - red, pink and golden types!
* Rainbow carrots from our good friends at Prairie Bottom Farm
* Cippolini onions
* Chard
* Kale
* Collards
* Kohlrabi
And probably something more I'm forgetting!
So hope to see you at market today!
Farmer Georgie
Willowood Farm of Ebey's Prairie

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