Some updates from the last two weeks, delayed thanks to my beautiful teething baby girl.
I'll be waiting about another week before I harvest any more rhubarb. We got a good amount taken care of this past weekend which will give lots of the young growth a chance to have the plants' energy. I've noticed with the week of chilly rain that the slugs and snails are out in full force. They've mostly taken to the rhubarb leaves without much damage to any stalks (knock on wood!) but I'm trying to be more vigilant about collecting them from the plants. Dealing with these kinds of pests is just another reminder that we work free of any chemicals, though! Anyway, rhubarb will be back at $2/lb.
On Sunday we noticed our first strawberry blossoms coming in. The plants look really strong and already by sunrise this morning there were tons more. With it being a sluggy spring so far I'm going to be watching like a hawk. I certainly don't want them to ruin our first big strawberry harvest! I should have some strawberries by the second week of June with perhaps a few pints during the first week. $3/pint or $5/quart. There should be plenty of crossover time with the rhubarb for your pies!
Salad mix is growing like weeds so hopefully we'll get a bit this weekend. I'm thinking another week and a half before we get a big haul of the greens and radishes. Kohlrabi is catching up quickly and should be here around the start of June. Lots of beets, chard, and carrots have popped up this past week as well. More successions of these staple crops will be going in the beds this weekend so we can continue to offer them throughout the main season (June through October at the very least).
Sweet onions have now emerged and will be available some time this summer. Dent corn is up, too. I'm really looking forward to having freshly ground cornmeal for winter holiday boxes this year. Things like this are hard to find even at the big regional market so we're so excited and proud to offer it!
We sowed many cucurbits two weekends ago, including lots (and I mean lots) of pickling cukes, various summer and winter squash, and a few kinds of interesting watermelons and melons. We're trialing a Korean melon that is said to grow very well up north. I'm also experimenting with some different watermelon spacings to allow us to have a higher overall yield but with fruits of more manageable size for friends with small households, ourselves included. Not to say that I can't eat a 30 pound watermelon in one sitting...
We transplanted our first wave of nightshades yesterday. Lots of paste tomatoes but also some interesting heirloom beefsteaks - Aunt Ruby's German Green (my ultimate favorite!), Cherokee Purple, Ananas Noire, and Mortgage Lifter. I'm looking forward to summer BLTs and simple, colorful tomato salads. We'll also have various sweet peppers (some thicker walled bells, some fryers) and tomatillos. No ground cherries this year but they'll be back next season when we re-expand!
And finally, we're excited to announce that the hens are now full-time free ranging and foraging from sunrise to sunset on our grass. So far they're happiest scratching around and dust bathing beneath the lilacs.
Enjoy this beautiful summery weather!