About three weeks ago now, I made a trip up to Lantzville to visit Nicole and Dirk on their farm. They have a 2 acre organic produce farm, on which they make their entire living. You may remember I went up there last fall to visit, too. Nicole spent a good 2 hours with me, taking me for a tour, answering all my questions, helping me all she could. I learned so much! They start planting their potatoes in February... mine didn't go in until April/May. I'd better get on it better next year! The other major thing I learned was to keep planting. All year long. They never stop planting seeds. So, when in doubt, plant some seeds. Want to earn more money? Plant some seeds. Feeling down because of the weather? Plant some seeds! I've taken this advice to heart, and over the last 3 weeks or so, I've planted about 2 or 3 thousand seeds. Maybe more. Most of them were planted in seed flats that I borrowed from a friend. This is a bit more time consuming, but the savings on water is astronomical. Many of what I planted just 3 weeks ago is already ready to go into the garden. Some of it already has gone into the garden. I've planted 2 types of kale, purple sprouting broccoli, mega mesculin, 4 or 5 kinds of lettuce, onions, winter cabbage, and I can't remember what else. Peas! About 6 beds of peas. This year, I think I planted them early enough that I should get a crop off of them. Last year I was about 2 weeks too late. Everything I plant is getting the mycroizzial fungi, and I am doing weekly dousings of the EM and the plant tea extract. I've had some amazing successes with these products. I had bought a sad little lemon tree in the spring, hoping to get some lemons at some point. The little tree had been shipped up from the States without even being rooted out, and was so stressed - it was literally on it's last legs. I had potted it up in hopes of it perking up, but immediately after, a dog ripped it out and tossed it 'round and 'round the yard. That poor lemon tree! I thought it was a goner for sure. I repotted it, used the plant tea, the EM and my compost tea on it weekly for the last 4 weeks or so. It's looking AMAZING! The leaves have all greened up (no more sickly yellow leaves), it has lush new growth, and is flowering like mad. I've been taking the flowers off for a while, so the little tree can continue to grow and get healthier before it starts to fruit.
Other successes: tomatoes have a ZILLION blooms and tomatoes forming. Some of my squash and watermelons and zucchini are looking fantastic (some of them never took... just wasn't meant to be, I guess). I just hope everything is looking good on time to get a decent harvest out of them. If not, there is always next year, I guess!
I finished making my own ginger beer the other day. Blueberry flavoured. It was fantastic! Didn't last long, though! I am busy making some more, and plan to keep it going so I always have a new batch coming up.
I also ordered 25 new meat birds and 10 new turkeys from a different hatchery. They will be here late August. I plan on stocking my freezer before winter sets in, so I will never have to worry about eating through the winter. My heritage turkeys and 4 little Dorking chicks I got a while ago are doing well - they are getting big! Now that it's rained, the ground should be soft enough to finish building them an outdoor run. Guess I'll have to get on that, too. So much to do. A friend gave me some fencing and a gate from an old dog kennel, which I am going to use for the run. FREEEEE! It's my favourite word;-) My other score this summer was the new garden center that opened up near by - they were giving away seeds. Lots and lots of seeds. I was a total pig and took LOTS of them each time I went. The seed savings for me should be good next year- I got all sorts of stuff. Carrots, broccoli, squash, zucchini, watermelon, onion, and so much more. Too much to list.