Thursday, January 7, 2016

Planning My Winter Away

I'm sure that at some point you must have wondered what we get up to here on the farm in the winter. Well I still find myself pretty busy. Life at the farm has certain rhythms that revolve around feeding the animals, caring for them, doing repairs to tools and fences on the warmer days, maintaining our equipment, keeping the house warm (it's currently 12.8 Celsius and the fire has been burning for two hours already) and setting in place all the plans for the garden. A garden plan is like a complex dance, a balance of light, shadow, water and succession. This week it's time to think about ordering my seeds, supplies, and fruit bushes and plants. Wholesale orders fill up fast so January is a good month to plan and buy seeds rather than waiting until March. While it's still cold in Canada, other place are getting spring by March and getting lots of crops started indoors. I think this week I'll plan my cash crops like peppers and tomatoes and decide if I'm grafting tomatoes this year. I have my sales records from last year so I know what varieties of tomato performed well and which sold the best as plants. I also want to look into some grow bags as I've heard they're great for tomatoes and peppers in a greenhouse. If they work well, perhaps guy could replace my hard sided pots. Way less plastic! But I wonder about the benefits. I will have to try it and see. I have some landscape fabric so I'm going to see about seeing myself some fabric grow bags. This might be a good addition to the retail side of things in our nursery but really it's just to experiment. If any of you have experience with them please drop me a line. My big debate currently is this... Is it worth paying four times the price to get bags that are white outside and black inside? I think they'd be cooler on the plants roots in the summer. And you could write directly on the bags so there are no labels to lose. 

Our first small batch of wheatgrass went in to Porters Lake yesterday. Hopefully it's just the first of many deliveries. I have to admit that the wheatgrass does taste better than some of the other stuff I've tried. But it still tastes like lawn clippings, which anyone who has cut grass with a hand mower can surely relate to. A little trial and error and we'll have a nice little sideline going. 

My last post was about a local Nova Scotia CEDIF (Community Economic Development Investment Fund) and there was quite a lot of talk yesterday on CBC radio about how great the various CEDIFs are for the economy in terms of the development of jobs and businesses in the region, and also as an investment if people are interested in seeing their money being used to strengthen and help rebuild sustainable communities. If you're interested (and you should be) check out FarmWorks or the development funds in the areas where you live. 

1 comment:

  1. I didn't know you can graft tomatoes, sounds like a lot of work for a short season, but I guess if people do it, then it's worth it. I can imagine that in greenhouses, yes.