Winter has melted into spring here at Edible Earthscapes. Haruka and I have been neck deep in our preparations for the upcoming season over the past 2 months and figured it was about time to step back, take a deep breath and let y’all know how things are looking over here these days.
We’ve got 4 varieties of garlic that overwintered very well and are starting into their big growth spurt before the May/June harvest.
Our beets also made it through the winter unscathed, so look forward to some nice beets to kick off the CSA season!
In the background are onions that have been transplanted over the past week.
Our winter cover crops of crimson clover and wheat took good care of our beds this past winter, which has made working the soil relatively enjoyable. We’ve made the conscious decision this year to go to a no-till approach on our farm so as to preserve the integrity of our soil as best we can. The absence of emissions is also a bonus. A key acquisition for us has been the Gulland Broadfork we purchased from Larry Cooper, who hand-forged it in Tennessee. This tool enables me to work cover crops and compost deep into the soil with minimal effort and maximum efficiency!
At this point we’ve gotten the majority of our spring crop beds prepared and many of them are already home to seedlings! Several varieties of onions were transplanted into the ground this past week as were heirloom varieties of lettuce and cauliflower.
Mizuna, arugula, spinach, bok choy and chard have been transplanted outside and are also growing in the greenhouse where we’ve already begun harvesting them! Seeds of carrots, beets, peas, daikon, turnips, radishes, shungiku, parsnips and kohlrabi have been sown in recent weeks, and are now starting to make their appearances above soil level. Chinese cabbage, celery and burdock are on deck in the greenhouse and poised for early April transplants. The potato rows were prepared yesterday and today potatoes went into the ground! Some of our warmer weather crops such as tomatoes, peppers, eggplants and cucumbers are already popping up in pots in the greenhouse!
Cabbage moths and grasshoppers are already in full-effect, so our vulnerable crops are being protected by row covers. Our chickens are helping us get off to a good start in combating pest insects this year. Last week we extended the chicken run which now surrounds half of our farm. Our eventual goal is to have a chicken run that encases the perimeter of the farm and forms a chicken gauntlet for outside bugs to pass through in order to get to our vegetables. I think our girls are up to the challenge. We got six new hens this year, bringing our total to eleven.
We hope this gives you a little glimpse of how things are shaping up on our farm these days. We’re looking forward to seeing you all this spring and providing you with a bit of goodness from our soil. The North Hills Farmers’ Market opens on April 11th! See y’all soon!