Friday, March 25, 2011

Happy Spring!

We're hosting two more planting parties this Sunday (4/10) and next Sunday (4/17). Please come out and join us for some fun times planting and picnicking!  If you think you might be coming for either (or both!) parties, please email us at (so we can be sure we have more than enough food for folks). 

The planting party on the first day of Spring was a success!!! Fourteen folks came out Sunday. We planted onions, kale, and cabbage. We also cut potatoes for seed. We spent two hours as a group to plant 14 beds of produce. It would have taken Ben and I days to do the same amount of work. True to the phrase, many hands make light work.

And this was truly a planting party.Throughout the day, we not only worked together to plant seedlings, folks were learning about each other, talking to each other. Some of the people here already knew each other, but for the most part folks didn't really know much about each other, or hadn't  previously met. In just a couple hours, I learned SO much about what people do with their time, their connections to food, agriculture, health, and we also talked about dogs and life and our jobs.
After we finished planting, we sat together outside for a yummy spread. Candy and Steve brought homemade focaccia, Kim and Andy brought hors devours(collard sushi rolls and spring rolls), and Bradford brought homemade kombucha with raspberries. We made a vegetarian minestrone soup. The tradition of minestrone soup is to use seasonal and available vegetables and other items on hand. That means there's no set recipe, which you know, makes me happy. We used our vegetables including carrots, kale, turnips (roots and greens) and collards. We also threw in portabella mushrooms, Roman beans, pink beans, tomatoes and onions.
We also had a nice big salad full of various lettuces, arugula, mizuna, and spinach. We used our nutty vinaigrette recipe for the dressing.

  Here's our friend Liese holding Luella Mae. Liese has been one of our amazing chicken caretakers. She and her partner, Eric, watched Charlie (our farm dog) and the chickens when went out of town for the SSAWG in Chattanooga. Liese and Luella Mae are good friends, as you can see here :0).

We've been steadily working to get more seeds in the soil and more plants in the ground since Sunday. Ben and I won't be going to market this Saturday so we can get more things ready out on the farm. We'll be tilling the soil for my new flower garden by the barn. I can't wait to expand and experiment with flowers this Summer season!!!

Here's a picture of Ben with hen's bit (the chickens love it - it's the purple flower bouquet in his arm) and tasting what we think is wild lettuce. I tried some too. It was bitter. The chickens liked it though.
Here's Ben making soil blocks. This week Ben made tons of soil blocks and I planted tons of seeds. The rest of the pictures are the seedlings from our first round of brassicas. We also have tomato, cucumber, and pepper seedlings (not pictured). 

Well, that's all folks! Have a fantastic weekend! We'll see you at market next week. 

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Planting Party This Sunday, the First Day of SPRING!

Hello all! We are having folks out to the farm this Sunday. We'll be getting started around 1pm. We'll be planting onions, scallions, and lettuce. Since our taters didn't get in until a couple of days ago, the seed isn't ready. However, if we have enough folks out here, we'll also be cutting our seed potatoes to get them started and ready for next week. Please come out and join us. The more folks we have out here to work, the less it will feel like work and the sooner we'll be finished and ready to socialize - and most importantly, eat yummy food! We'll likely be making a vegetarian chili and salad.

If you do plan on coming out, there are a few things you might (but don't have to) bring with you:
- chairs (for hanging out and eating)
- water bottle/container
- sunscreen
- hat
- good comfy shoes (and wear work clothes)

For directions, click here.

Here are a couple pictures of our friends helping us plant onions last week.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Spring is in the air. Time to get out there!

Hello folks! The time has come for Ben and I to get out there and work our booties off getting all of the seeds and plants in the soil. We would absolutely love it if any of y'all in the area would like to stop by and help us get some planting and transplanting work done. Planting and transplanting is much more fun in groups. The more folks that come out, the less work we all need to do. While we would be ecstatic if you wanted to dedicate a lot of your day to helping us get our produce in the ground, even just 30 minutes of your time would be extremely helpful. Right now it's time for us to get onions in the ground. Absolutely as soon as possible! We will be planting onions Monday, March 7th through Saturday, the 12th (we have market on Saturday, so we'll be starting late that day). We'll also be seeding tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, and slicing cucumbers.

The next thing we'll need to do is get our seed potatoes in the ground (they haven't shipped yet, but they will be here before we know it). We'll be planting a crazy variety of taters, including French fingerlings, blue, red, yellow, and white varieties. Many of you have told us you would like more onions and potatoes this year. Well, we're on it! We'll begin planting potatoes the first day of Spring (Sunday, March 20th) and we plan to be wrapping it up on Wednesday, the 23rd). 

If you plan on coming out, you may certainly just drop by (1000 McLemore Road Clayton, NC 27520), but we do sometimes leave the farm, so it's probably best to call us or email us first. Ben's phone number is 919-800-8898.Our email address is If you give us enough notice, we'll feed you. Heck, even if you don't give us notice, we can probably find something tasty for you to nosh on. I mean, we're growing food, right?

So, just in case you're not sold on this whole coming out to the farm to help us do manual labor thing, I'm going to try to pitch this thing.
  1. Spring is in the air! It feels great to be outside after a whole winter long of being inside. It's time to get outside in the spring sunshine and get to moving. 
  2. We'll get to hang out. Learn some things from each other, exercising our brains and our bodies. It's win-win. 
  3. I sincerely think working together with people has an intrinsic value that I can't explain - but it's mutually beneficial and it's pretty great. And we are obviously invested in the idea of getting help to put our produce in the soil. And so many of you help already...
Come out if you want  to and can. We appreciate the support systems we are a part of. If you're reading this, you're probably one of so many people in whose lives we now share in some way or another. Thank you for everything you do (and we hope you feel the same about us too). If you can't make it out to the farm for the beginning of Spring, we hope to see you at market or in April out at the farm. Enjoy the renewal and rejuvenation of Spring! And thanks for stopping by.   

The brief version:
  • March 7th through March 12th we'll be planting onions. We'll also be seeding tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, and slicing cukes. 
  • March 20th (the first day of Spring!) through March 23rd we'll be planting potatoes.
  • Call us or email us if you know when you might stop by. 
  • We'll feed you. 
  • We appreciate you.