Good news

On Sunday, I visited the garlic.  First time I’d been there to see it in person, and it looks great.  It all came through the winter.

One can not say the same of the shallots.. there may be enough of them to save for planting, but there’s not enough to sell.  The seed was stinking up the house in the fall, so I can’t say I’m shocked.

And more good news.. right now, at this VERY moment, Farmer Y is driving his little red tractor through our property with tillage equipment of some kind behind it.  My ignorance level with regards to conventional farming is pretty high, so I can’t even tell you WHAT he is using on the field.  The anhydrous spray truck visited last week (don’t worry, it only visited the big field, not my 2 little organic fields!).  Anyway, he is towing two things behind the tractor and they look kind of like rakes. I know enough to be able to tell that they are not disks, and if they are plows, they look a bit different than other plows that I’ve seen lately.

It’s been interesting to watch all the local farmers at work over the last week.  Some of them put the anhydrous on when they plant, some of them do it before plowing.  One farm had big trucks out spreading lime a few weeks ago, but I haven’t seen anyone else spreading lime.  Some of them have mega-tractors and a semi trailer full of anhydrous sitting by the side of the road for refills and a big crew waiting to help them at all times.  Farmer Y appears to have two buddies in pickup trucks along with him today.  I don’t know what they are for, perhaps to help set up the tractor attachments, but I have yet to see anyone operating a tractor without at least two friends in pickup trucks waiting nearby.

Hopefully I’ll be too busy in the coming weeks to blog as often, but also hopefully we will take some good pictures so that you can see how things are progressing on the farm.  Only 1 month until the market starts!

Seedlings, Publicity, Finance.

Many, many seedlings are out on the back deck getting some badly-needed fresh air.   Broccoli & onions are ready to go in the ground the second it’s ready.  Lettuce will be ready after spending a few more days out in the wind.  We have an amazing wind resource out here.. that’s a topic for another post.  The first group of tomato seedlings I started were looking very long in the tooth, so I potted them into bigger containers with more compost yesterday & gave them a little fish fertilizer.  Hopefully they’ll perk up soon.

Today I’m working on our first foray into advertising!  It’s a little scary designing an ad before the fields are plowed, but I know there will be no time to work on the ad AFTER the fields are plowed. We’re going to have a program ad with the Indiana Wind Symphony.  Their concert season and our selling season barely overlap- the ad will be in the last program of their season.  Hopefully this will be a good way to reach some people who have not heard about our farm yet.

I also did some more of the incorporation-related paperwork for Farming Engineers, LLC.  We now have an EIN, so I can open a bank account with the business name on it.  We already had a farm-designated bank account, but part of the reason for the LLC creation was to more clearly separate the farm assets from our personal assets.  I feel much more comfortable doing a greater volume of business when that designation is clear.

I don’t remember if I posted about this yet, but we have been officially accepted as a season-long vendor at the Carmel Farmer’s Market.  I’m very excited about spending every Saturday morning this summer at said market.  I have always enjoyed shopping AND selling produce there in the past. If you are in the area and have never been there, you should go. They seek to have a really diverse blend of products, and they succeed. You can usually get beef, chicken, elk, pork, goat cheese, popcorn, wine, and homemade soap in addition to your fruits and vegetables. Last year they had local chefs give talks on preparing different entrees, a variety of live music (some to my taste, some not), and of course the not-to-be-missed Vegetable Art contest! Hopefully I will have just as much enthusiasm for this market after spending an entire season there as a vendor.

A little bit of everything

The weather is starting to look up a little, at least if I look at the 5-day forecast.  This morning I ran across Ecclesiastes 11:6-

“Sow your seed in the morning, and at evening let not your hands be idle, for you do not know which will succeed, whether this or that, or whether both will do equally well.”

This year, our philosophy is to grow some of everything, and see what does the best/ makes the most money, or at least what has a good profit-to-labor ratio.  And it’s very true that I am growing many, many new-to-me crops, and I do NOT know which will succeed.. the weather, the conditions, and the crops themselves are all variables.  It’s exciting to watch, though.  If “both will do equally well” we will be so, so busy!

Chicken Fun

The chickens are outside, in their house.  They are enjoying their chicken run.

So are the cats.  It’s cat TV.

So is the dog.. she would sit next to the chicken house all day and lick it if we allowed this.

If there’s a nice day, ever, maybe we’ll take pictures!