Greetings from Dancing Hen Farm
As seems to be usual on farm, this past week has been filled with weather. A little over a week ago, the farm was blanketed by over 2 feet of snow. While we still dealing with the storm, we welcomed spring to the farm early Monday morning with the vernal equinox. I am happy to say spring has brought with it nice warming sun, which is quickly melting our snow. Even with today's very cool temperatures and high winds, the sun is still shines brightly and if you are out of the wind, the sun warms your face.
On farm we survived the latest snow storm. Last Tuesday's heavy snow brought some worries to the farm and meant Farmer Don spent extra time bonding with the chickens as he worked to keep their coops free of snow. Our two chicken coops are modified Chinese solar greenhouses and are constructed, partly with PVC pipes and covered with clear plastic. The fear was that the weight from the snow would collapse the structures, trapping and most likely harming the chickens. I can happily and proudly say Farmer Don's diligence saved the coops and the chickens. Unfortunately, I cannot say the same for three smaller greenhouse which did collapse under the weight of the snow. These greenhouses were also constructed using PVC pipes and by ten o'clock Tuesday morning they were already folding under the weight of the snow. In all honesty, we were forced to sacrifice these three houses as our focus needed to remain on the chicken coops. The collapsed houses will be rebuilt in the near future and will be used to house transplants sizing up for planting into our fields. I can also happily report that our two main greenhouses, constructed with much stronger metal pipes, handled the snow load with little to no damage. Yes, we were disappointed to lose our smaller houses, but in all honesty, we are happy to have weathered the storm so well.
However, this late snow and cold temperatures has slowed our early spring production. Farmer Don likes the folklore of planting peas on St. Patrick's Day. Obviously this year, our peas are not in the ground. Not only do we still have snow on the ground, but where the snow is melting, the mud is unbelievable. We will need the sun, warming temperatures and winds to continue so our fields can dry enough for Farmer Don to get plots ready for planting. But, we are still busy getting ready for this upcoming growing season. Seeding has begun for early field production, including, trays chard, lettuce and scallions. We also have begun turning over our large greenhouse (thanks Jason!) for some direct seeding of greens. Stay tuned for how our spring planting progresses!
As many of you know we sell our products to some local restaurants, including The Blind Pig Kitchen in Bloomsburg. This spring The Blind Pig is hosting a series of meet the farmer (and fisherman) dinners on Sunday nights. These are five course dinners featuring ingredients form different local farms and producers. On April 23, they will be featuring us, Dancing Hen Farm! Farmer Don and I will be there to meet everyone and talk about our farm. Reservations are required and there is a limited number of seats, so if you are interested, please contact Sarah at the restaurant. The Blind Pig Kitchen's website is http://www.blindpigkitchen.com/homepage/ And their facebook site is https://www.facebook.com/blindpigkitchenbloomsburg/
A quick note on our buying club. The buying club will be open on a very limited basis until we have some spring vegetables. We are thinking a delivery sometime before Easter so customers can load up on eggs or ham for the holiday. As always, if you would like to order eggs or pork, please contact us and we will do our best to get the product to you.
Time for me to check the on our supper! Happy Spring!