Friday, March 27, 2020

Planting update, March 26th, 2020

Hi Friends!
A quick update from the farm. Sometimes, many times, on the farm, when opportunities present themselves, you have to take advantage. As a grower, the weather is the defining subject. And, on this forum, I've spoken about the weather many, many times. Well, yesterday was one of those days of opportunity. The rain on Wednesday wasn't too heavy and we dried out over night. I had previously set up to have composted manure delivered, and the seed order had arrived two days before. I knew from Joe, ( WNEP), the weatherman, rain was forecast for early Friday and both Saturday and Sunday. Not good weather to plant. So, yesterday it was. As a grower for almost 15 years, probably planting peas 15 different ways, finally knowledge and equipment have come together to make the planting a somewhat simpler task. Knowing the job in front of me, away I went. The planting beds were clean from the previous year thanks to our nephew Keith and his son Jeff, and our Amish grower friend John and his son Stephan. So, tractor work was easy. Chisel plow went well. Compost arrives. Gotta spread it. Four 250 ft beds to work. Spreading by hand, out of the back of the RTV. No problem, been there, done that. As Stacy, Ken, Jason and Neil all know very well. Shovel right in the bed, shovel right in the bed. Up and down to the compost. Finally, the beds are composted. Another run with the chisel to incorporate. Next is the disk to smooth the bed. Changing equipment taking time. Keep going, gonna get this done. Okay, beds are ready for shaping. Run the special disk wheel to make the trenches for the seeds. Done, looking real well, soil not wet, not too dry, cool. Real excited this is working. Down to the house to check on Joan and the pups. 5pm. Getting a little late. Tell Joan I have to keep going, get the planting done. She voices her support, "go get it done, but don't over do it" , Okay I'm back at it. Puppies have been fed and are ready to help Dad finish the job. Peas, 1/2 lb of seed per 40 row ft. Okay, weigh the first amount, get an idea how many seeds for the 40ft. Got it and away we go. Spreading seed by hand. Again no problem, been there, done that. Shady walking around doing her own thing. Cool. Rosie though, wants attention. Needs a job. A border collie with no job, not good. Every rock thrown out of the planting bed becomes a fetch toy. Bark, bark! "what are these little white things you keep putting on the ground?" "throw them for me, I want to do something..I'll fetch them for you." So, Rosie and daddy move forward, seed, bark, seed, bark, Five lbs in, one bed done, Snow peas are in the ground. Move on to Mr. Big, our shelling peas. Got the mojo going. Feeling it. Thanking the Lord for giving me the strength to work. Sweater on, Sweater off. Don't know if I'm hot or cold. Keep planting, we're gonna finish. Finally all the seeds are in. The final two beds being the Sugar Snap peas. Two beds of just Sugar Snaps. Yea! Final step is tractor work to cover the trenches. Just have to turn the disks a different direction, move them out a little on the tool bar and away we go. Last step. Again, no problem, got this, been there done this. Lining the tractor up to run the bed. Have to be in line. Can't screw up now. Too close to finishing and finishing strong! Away I go. Keep the tractor on line. No looking back. Stay the course. Trust yourself, trust your equipment! Finish the bed, turn around for the next run. Finished bed looks great, YEA! Three more to go, no problem. Bang out the next three beds, same results. Wow, this worked, worked well and the peas are planted. Again, thanking the Lord for giving me the knowledge and strength to finish the task. Thanking the Lord for giving Joan strength and health. Clean up and down to the house for dinner, a late dinner, but a feel good dinner. Turkey Broccoli Casserole. Tired but excited. Bottom line, Peas are Planted. Looking forward to sharing the harvest!!!
So, friends, thanks for the support, continue to support small businesses and sustainable agriculture and be well out there.
Farmer Don

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