Watch as Farmers Grow

Monthly Summary April 2011

April 3rd, 2012 | Posted by Beau Young in Monthly Summary

Monthly Summary – April, 2011

Beau: Logs and records reviewed, and summary prepared 4/3/2012

BGBs May 2011

General Observations: 

April of 2011 saw snow showers on April fools day and progressed to rain showers which created very wet conditions through most of the month, ending in a beautiful sunny day on the 30th. Notable issues were the water system leak, which delayed the use of the well irrigation. The rat traps were unsuccessful, instead only catching ants with the peanut butter bait, and subsequently some seedlings were lost to an opportunistic groundhog. Market sales included Hopewell market on Wednesdays beginning the second week of April, as well as sales to Kindle Café, Nomad and seedling sales to Whole Earth.

Equipment 8 hrs:

There were few equipment issues other than vehicle repairs for Isuzu, Prius and Volvo.

Administration 47 hrs:

Tasks performed included finalizing the flowers and supplies order, ordering of fruit and nut trees. Preparing 1st quarter payroll reports for state of NJ, and finalizing the crop plan.

Infrastructure 96 hrs:

The beginning of month saw a leak in the water system so the crew had to resort back to the farmhouse water supply. Later in the month, the crew dug up the pipe between the office and the farmhouse. Turns out the leak was coming from about 8 feet down from the nozzle, not at the elbow as was originally believed.  The fence surrounding the Madonna needed repairing due to a problem with the posts not staying in the ground.  Later in the month, irrigation of Ralphs house led to over watering and a trench had to be dug on the east side to drain it. Other duties included mowing of the market garden and Veg C, as well as the fence line and compost filtration strip.

Greenhouse 122 hrs:

Greenhouse work consisted of an introduction to daily management including venting systems, seeding and watering. Cleaning /mulching of pathways and edges of interior, reorganizing and moving the seedlings to farm stand area to harden off and moved some to the hoop house. Potting of orange blossom, Rosa Bianca and orient charm for seedling sales.  Grafting of tomatoes toward the end of the month.

Composting 66 hrs:

Composting consisted of Strawberry and Pea beds early in the month, then moved to Asparagus beds, Apple trees and other fruit trees and of course, lots of compost sifting.

Planting 83 hrs:

Potting of second succession seeding. Seeding of tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, arugula, tatsoi and flowers. Very wet conditions but nevertheless planting commenced following lots of rototilling and raking. Direct seeding of lettuce on the 14th, planting of kale and chard on the shoulder of two beds, with turnips and radishes planted in the center of the beds. Planting of spinach (half bed) and swiss chard  with beets down the center. “New Girl” tomatoes planted in farmhouse gothic and Tunnel tomatoes in greenhouse.

CropCare 166 hrs:

Weeding party on Saturday the 2nd resulted in completion of 2/3rds of the strawberry beds and beer and shrimp were the much-deserved reward that evening. Blackberries started peeking out on the 4th, Peas were planted on the 6th. Mulching of strawberry beds completed on the 8th. Uncovering of strawberries on the 14th. The 21st saw almost freezing temps so the crew covered the beds to protect them from frost. Beds were renovating in the tea/corner garden. Woodchip/cardboard mulch was used on the blackberries. Weeding of four garlic beds in the Madonna field finished off the month.

Harvesting 64 hrs:

Harvested Arugula, Spinach, Tatsoi, Salad Mix, Swiss Chard and Kale for Hopewell market. Harvested stinging nettle for flush tea, took 4 days to dry in solar dryer.  Harvesting of house lettuce, arugula and six nice stalks of asparagus by the 23rd.

Handling 42 hrs:

All of the above were washed and bagged for Hopewell market and sales to Kindle Café.

Marketing 57 hrs:

Participated in Hopewell market on Wednesdays, yielding $1,192.31. Delivered spinach, salad mix and kale to Kindle Café. The first seedling order of 120 plants to Whole Earth was on the 20th.

Special Projects 13 hrs:

Chickens were moved during a fierce and windy rainstorm. Firewood was cut and a dog pen was sited and constructed. Hired a mason to build a better walkway and steps to access the main drain valve and wetlands by greenhouse. And ultimately egg washing and packing for Hopewell market.


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