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Author Archives: miker

Profit and Loss Summary – 2013

March 13th, 2015 | Posted by miker in Season Summary - (Comments Off on Profit and Loss Summary – 2013)

Farm Profit and Loss 2013

Farm profit and Loss Summary – 2013 Simplified.  Prepared by MikeR

Winter Solstice 2014

December 3rd, 2014 | Posted by miker in Community Affairs - (Comments Off on Winter Solstice 2014)

Winter Solstice 2014-

At North Slope Farm, Winter Solstice is honored as an ancient, human celebration.  We get together at ‘the Farmhouse’ to share foods and beverages, music, stories and laughter.

2014 will be honored on Sunday December 21 – 5pm into the evening.  If forecast for Sunday is Dire – Party may be pushed earlier to Sat!

Some details; there will be food and drink avail, but please bring something to share.  The meal is Pot-luck, there will be a table to set your dish, likewise the party is BYO – tho we will have a big hot water station and our dried herbs to sample as Tea.

Musicians are encouraged to bring their instrument, as group jams often occur.  A safe zone for instruments will be established by the Players….  If you think you’d like to offer some song / music and want to confirm details call North Slope Farm at 609-460-4636.

Location – and parking..

Musicians and early arrivals will find space in the “Farmhouse Parking Lot” at 1701 Linvale-Harbourton Rd, 08530.  It has limited parking tho and the overflow is around the corner on Rock Road East.

Park at North Slope Farm to be sure to find a spot386 Rock Road East, 08530.  From Route 579, turn onto Rock Road East, the first driveway is the Farm entrance.  Overflow parking will seem like you are following a long and winding road, but don’t worry, you will follow a trail of torches back to the party and it’ll be fun!

Clothing – wear solid shoes, walking from parking, if at all rainy, in recent past, you will encounter Wet Ground.  Party will be inside Farmhouse but, weather permitting, there will be a celebration ‘Campfire’ outside as well.

Any questions?  call mike at 609-460-4636

Hope we see you there, but wherever you are;  ‘Happy Solstice’

Monthly Summary – November 2013

November 19th, 2014 | Posted by miker in Monthly Summary - (Comments Off on Monthly Summary – November 2013)

Monthly Summary – November 2013

Prepared by MR on 11/17/14

General Observations:  The first day of November was memorable for a “freak front,” that plowed through our Salad Harvest.  “..the salad harvest was going nicely until the weather turned very dark, then wind picked up and heavy rain.  A dull roar ensued as hard, wind driven rain pounded down – [the field manager] called the crew to take shelter due the extreme conditions.”  I remember as we stood up, the wind swirled around us, sucking all the cut lettuce out of our crates, creating a mini blizzard of baby lettuce…  “on return to the lettuce, it proved to be severely damaged by pellet like rain drops, and the harvest was abandoned.”  There were some notes of nice days, but more of “frozen ground,”  “uncovered crops lost to frost damage”, “late start to harvest due to freezing conditions.”  So November continues to be a month where the true character of the crew is tested and the manager struggles to fulfill production goals against increasing challenges.  November had the least total worker hours (324), half the previous month and one third of the busiest months.  We close operations after the weekend before Thanksgiving, so almost two weeks are just minimum chores and weather proofing.
Frosted Crops
Equipment; 8 Hrs:  Ford and hay baler.  Notes of the Ford tractor overheating while field mowing.  MR cut the field to the north of the Eco-Cluster, controlling woody growth and rejuvenating a nice hay field.  A third of the field has been allowed to grow up in adventitious woody species as a dynamic opportunity to experiment with micro climates – woody wind break and southern solar access – needs annual and attentive mowing.

Administration; 23 Hrs:   The log notes “Afternoon – Workers need to be self motivated.”  I gave the crew the same lecture this November, and it rings true as ‘a statement of the end of the season.’  The worker and the manager struggle, usually side by side, but at least in common, towards the goal of finishing this and that task.  By the end of the season, it takes a hard push to keep productive, and the manager is usually at the end of their reserves.  Even if cheerful, the expectant gaze of idle workers, stirs deeply, in the manager, the desire; that the worker will internalize the practices of the season, mingled with an awareness of current needs, to be self motivated.  This is complicated by the change of season, conditions and evolving expectations, and the worker is appropriately looking for guidance!

Infrastructure; 39 Hrs:  KG noted thanks for use of newly tilled garden in Farmhouse yard, as he cleaned up the seasons debris.  Chores hampered by frozen conditions, water buckets are filled before draining pipes, and need to be tucked in non freezing corners.  After the last marketing weekend the pressure tank and all water lines were completely drained for the Winter.  Water for chores or misc produce washing now comes from the Farmhouse or the Ranch.

Greenhouse; 2 Hrs:  Tomato vine cleanup from two houses this month.  The hours were probably assigned to Crop Care, because the task must have taken 8-10 worker hrs.  Additionally, KG managed micro greens for sale to the farm ($189 this month), to resell.

Composting; 0 Hrs:  Each week, there is compost generated in the handling and marketing of produce.  A ‘Zero Hours’ hardly does justice to the focus of the composter – who diligently maintains containers to collect compostables, then empties them onto a managed pile in the Composting Area.  Here’s to you, Diligent Composter!

Planting; 20 Hrs:  Seeding cover crop in Farmhouse Yard Garden.  Last planted crops, October 16 and 19, are nowhere near ready to yield crop for last market.  Need to plant crops for last harvests by mid September.  Garlic Planted on the 19th; 6 beds, 10 worker hrs, 500 cloves per bed.  We positioned cloves to see if there is a noticeable difference in leaf spread next year.  Ie. “rounded side of clove planted towards the south vs to the west.”

Crop Care; 29 Hrs:   By this time there is no doubt but that the ‘Agricultural fleece’ or ‘Remay’ should be covering any crops that will be harvested or overwintered.  KG preparing summary, noted that this season we utilized <20,000 feet of drip tape.  Chard under remay protected from frost damage, uncovered it is not viable for harvest!  Where there is remay, there are crews tending them with each windy day, sometimes multiple times in a day.

Harvesting; 90 Hrs: Note that for fall harvest we should plant frost resistant head lettuce, in hopes of better results than the baby leaf.  Two weeks without salad mix due partly to slow growth but also the storm damage..  First week of November and notes are clear as to the effect of cold – “Harvest hampered by cold fingers in am and required warm gear right to the end..”  Second harvest of the month, note that cold hammered kale, collards and chard “all very sad looking, still frozen even at 10 am.”

Handling; 43 Hrs:  With large volume of carrot harvest, MR called Jess from Chickadee Creek Farm, to try out her barrel washer.  Constant tumbling and water spray.  To get product really clean, still had to be careful not to overload a batch and found best results after pushing the tumbled carrots back to top of (the slightly sloped) barrel a few times.

Marketing;  72 Hrs:   Labeling our Tomato Goodness Sauce and Ketsup for retail sales.  Calculations of time invested in the sauce process and $1 per pound for the tomatoes yields a retail value of $15 Quart.  It is an exceptional product, ‘Artisan Sauce’ and well worth the value.  The processor, Baumans Family Fruit Butters, is far away, which adds to the cost, but they treat the product well and it is proven in the taste and consistency.  Weekly market sales dropping, tomatoes fading out by third week.  Noted one week was a Kale cooking demo by Chris of Cherry Grove Organic Farm, wherein “..we all sold out!”  With last market of the season forcast to be 30 degrees F. MR put plan in action for extreme vegetable vending!  We dusted off a salvaged ‘wall mount’ propane space heater, and purchased a bottle mounted heater element to create a ‘warmth envelope’ at our stand.  On actual set up at Summit, we immediately had to give up the idea of tent walls because the wind was too gusty.  Ultimately, the wall mount heater was propped on the truck tail gate and produce was served out of the (above freezing) box of the truck.  The display was frozen solid all day, as folks asked for something we popped into the box truck to bring it out and encouraged the customer to hurry to their car!Heater at Market

            WestWindsor: 11/2 $1482, 11/9 $1,134, 11/16 $1,061, 11/24 $1,554

            Summit: 11/3 $3,210, 11/10 $2,940, 11/17 $2,780, 11/24 $2,320

            Market Total for November 2013:  $16,481

Special Projects; 6 Hr:  Harvested 72 bales of late cut hay from 4 passes around the outside of CNE Field.  The pattern struck me as a way to combine haying and veggie production, that the outside perimeter of a large field might be utilized as the longest straight runs for the hay equipment, leaving the center of the field for shorter rows of tended food crops.

USDA Approves Funding for Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program

March 26th, 2014 | Posted by miker in Community Affairs - (Comments Off on USDA Approves Funding for Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program)

North Slope Farm received notification from the New Jersey Department of Health, that Seniors can expect to receive funds from the Federal Government, that are to be invested in local Agriculture, at Farmers Markets!

Seniors.. Do you know how to access these Funds?  Call the NJ Health Department 609-292-9560

or Click this Link

North Slope Farm Trainees – Guilders of 2013

January 23rd, 2014 | Posted by miker in Season Summary - (Comments Off on North Slope Farm Trainees – Guilders of 2013)

Thank You Crew, for all you do….

Click on the Photo below to page thru the 2013 Guilder Set.  There was a week or two when the full staff was working together; 2 first years, 2 second years, 2 third years, the Farm Manager and one staff worker who stepped into the Farm Managers position when he was injured.

The Crew grew more crops, more successfully, on more well tended land, than ever before, here at North Slope.  ‘Well Tended’ in that all productive land was left in healthy vegetative cover before the onset of Winter.  Soil fertility has been maintained and improved, and systems are ‘Go’ for the Season to come!

Harvest and Planting Summary – 2012

January 23rd, 2014 | Posted by miker in Season Summary - (Comments Off on Harvest and Planting Summary – 2012)

Harvest and Planting Summary – 2012

MikeR 1/23/14

Element Hours – 2012

January 23rd, 2014 | Posted by miker in Season Summary - (Comments Off on Element Hours – 2012)

Element Hours – 2012

MikeR 1/23/14

Profit and Loss Statement – 2012

January 23rd, 2014 | Posted by miker in Season Summary - (Comments Off on Profit and Loss Statement – 2012)

Profit and Loss Statement – 2012

By MikeR on Jan23, 2014

Cover Crop Plan and Task Lisk 2013

October 3rd, 2013 | Posted by miker in Planting - (Comments Off on Cover Crop Plan and Task Lisk 2013)

click on scan below for more size options…

CoverCrop Plan 2013

Task List –

MikeR needs to maximize the opportunity provided by excellent weather and timing for Planting, and three Trainees who will be charged with Preparing for, and establishing our Main Blocks of Winter Cover Crops – Today.

The weather has been warm and dry, soil conditions are excellent and the Moon Stage will be “New Moon” in a few days – perfect for planting quick growing seed!

The Seed – Organic Seed purchased from LAKEVIEW ORGANIC GRAIN llc; Triticale Rye, Winter Pea, Hairy Vetch and Oats.

The Rye, Peas and Vetch will be mixed and broadcast on all the fields (see “Bare Fallow’ fields above) and this seasons productive beds, that are ready .  The Oats will be broadcast and worked into the Veg C south Field Beds, in preparation for next season’s first succession of field bed planting.

The Process – The Bare Fallow Fields have been prepared recently with our Cut Harrow, or Disc.  The goal is to crumble the soil in the preparation of a soft, loose seed bed.  The seed will be broadcast over the field, then gently (as possible) raked into the top few inches of the Soil.  Ideally we will then “tamp down” or lightly compact the soil surface to foster good germination of the seeds.

Additionally, we have cultivated all the field beds (with young crops) and worked up areas that have already produced crops this year.  These areas will have cover crop seed broadcast by hand, and the soil is being “worked” by our offset cultivating Tractor – International Case 265, and the rear attached Williams Tool Bar.  The Williams Tools bar is my preference for final raking of the seed into its seedbed, due to the light touch of its design and smaller operating tractor.  Finally, the Seed will be tamped down using our ATV pulling a ‘Roller” as well as a “cultipacker” which is pulled by our larger tractor and covers more ground.

The Challenge as a Trainer, is to be sure the job is done well and completely, while incorporating three Trainees into all steps of the Process.

Moving Creations, Inc – Support Girls in Philadelphia

October 3rd, 2013 | Posted by miker in Community Affairs - (Comments Off on Moving Creations, Inc – Support Girls in Philadelphia)

Fund Raiser for Moving Creations, Inc

Saturday October 5, 2013

4 – 7 pm

Pilates Alchemy

20 East Mount Airy Ave, 2nd Flr

Philadelphia, Pa 19119


North Slope Farm has pledged to host a supporter of Moving Creations, Inc

Certificate of Reservation

By committing your Contribution


Moving Creations, Inc.

6757 Greene Street, Suite 330

Philadelphia, PA 19119


You Reserve Your Campsite at

North Slope Farm
386 Rock Road East
Lambertville, NJ 08530
Contact: MikeR

Certificate Valid thru November 2014

Contact us early so we can plan and advise!
Excellent opportunity for ‘safe’ Adventure.