Hands down fall is my favorite time of the year. I love the cool, crisp mornings and the sparkling azure sky. It is also the time of year that we finally get relief from the long, hot, dry summer and can actually begin to grow things again. Suffice it to say that I am eagerly [...]
We are right in the middle of the dog days of summer which the hot and dry conditions of late reflect. This is a tricky time for Central Texas vegetable farmers because early fall crops such as tomatoes and winter squash must be planted now in order to produce before first frost, but the 100+ [...]
We are already well into spring now here at the farm. We are harvesting onions and starting to harvest the first of the yellow finn potatoes. We have loads of not quite ripe tomatoes on the plants in the greenhouse and on the plants outdoors and expect to have ripe tomatoes in a couple of [...]
The signs of spring are everywhere, and with all of the rain we have been getting since fall, this spring promises to be a glorious one.
Our winter crops are thriving and many early spring crops have been started. It feels a lot like spring already which is a bit worrisome. Spring seems to arrive a little bit earlier each year, but to have it start in January just seems a bit extreme. The crops, however, are loving the cool nights [...]
With all the warm weather we have been having it doesn’t really seem like winter. Hard freezes have been sparse so far this winter and with the regular rainfall we have had all fall cool-weather plants and crops are thriving. It also looks like wildflowers will make a welcome return this spring after having almost none last spring.
I really enjoy fall and winter farming. There are many reasons why I like fall and winter growing better than spring and summer growing, but the main one is that I like to eat the fall and winter crops more than those that we are able to grow in the hot months. And when you [...]
Up until today, October hasn’t felt much like fall, but that changed yesterday evening when our first strong cold front blew in. Later in the week we may be needing to cover our warm weather crops to keep them from freezing.
It is really tricky getting cool weather fall crops started when the weather is 100+ every day, but the window of opportunity for the fall growing season is fleeting and many crops must be set out in the August/Sept timeframe in order to have time to produce. Heck, it is still so hot that the tomatoes and peppers that I planted in early July are barely producing blooms much less fruit at this point even though they are under shade structures.
The transplants in the greenhouse are thriving for the most part, although it has been a bit of a challenge keeping the greenhouse cool enough for the broccoli, chard and lettuce during the unusual warm period we have been experiencing for the past couple of weeks. The temp rose to 84 F outside yesterday, which [...]
As a first step in tidying up the entrance to the farm, Ron hung prayer flags over the birms on either side of the gate. A day or so after he hung them we had a note in our mailbox from one of our neighbors inquiring where we obtained such nice, big prayer flags.
Some twelve or thirteen years ago Ron and I, disappointed in our corporate high tech jobs, set a goal of starting our own small business. We weren’t completely sure exactly what kind of business it would be at that point, just that it would involve growing plants and vegetables. And so we set out on our journey of learning and discovery. There was so much to know, so many decisions to make, so far to go to get where we wanted to be. It seemed overwhelming and confusing many times, but we kept moving along at a slow and steady pace.
The produce and herbs in the greenhouse are doing pretty well. It is such a pleasure to cut fresh lettuce, chard, spinach, and herbs in the middle of winter. The surprising thing is how little space it takes to grow enough to eat for several months.
We have a nice winter vegetable crop started in the greenhouse this year. We have half a dozen cucumbers, over twenty tomatoes, raspberries, lettuce, and some peppers. All of the plants are hooked up to a drip irrigation system. We are using liquid organic fertilizer applied in-line through the irrigation system which seems to be working really well. The plants are all very healthy and vigorous, with thick stalks and broad leaves. I will be planting spinach, chard, more lettuce, and some herbs over the holidays, which I can move out to the gardens later if we want to.
I planted about twenty broccoli plants in the fall this year. Some have done really well, and others have struggled. The one pictured below is the biggest one we had all year. They are the most tasty broccoli I have grown to date, equally good raw in salads and lightly steamed with a little butter, [...]