Typical spring week warm, pleasant and sunny the first half and then gray the second half. Still lots to do though, both on and off the farm. Betsy and I are still trying to get out from under some of these “extra curricular” activities that we become engaged in, slowly but surely! We do sit on a number of Boards of organizations that do work that we feel is important to the small farm community. Betsy is the Treasurer and seems like general counsel for the Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers (ASCFG), “the” national body for growers of cut flowers other than roses and carnations. I am in the third year on the board of the Southern Sustainable Agriculture Working Group (SSAWG), this is a great umbrella organization that does important work all across the South with family farms. I encourage you to check out their website for all of the different areas that they work in www.ssawg.org .
How did I get onto this jag? Oh yeah Monday nights long Farmers’ Market board meeting. Most folks don’t realize that the Carrboro Farmers’ Market has the organized structure behind it that it does, they think that it “just happens”, you know organized chaos. That is actually what we want people to think. In reality the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Farmers’ Markets, Inc. is farmer run and controlled group. It is directed by a seven member board elected by and from the vendor members. We also currently have three paid staff that take care of the day to day market operations. Betsy and I have been involved with the Board for sixteen years now in some capacity or another. Why? Because it is so important to our life and business. The market accounts for 85% of our business and we also believe that it is one of the finest examples of how a local sustainable food system can work. See you just thought you were buying fresh vegetables and flowers!
On the farm planting continues as we finish up the spring crops and start the warm season ones. Dianthus (Sweet William), the first Sunflowers and a few other flowers went in and just about the last of the lettuce for the season. Just before the rains came! Good thing too because otherwise the end of the week would have been spent setting up irrigation. Now it’s time to start cultivating/weeding, we got through the lettuces and a number of flowers before the rain. Trellising peas and fertilizing the flowering shrubs like hydrangeas and viburnums. Work in the greenhouse moving up the tomato transplants into bigger containers, 720 plants of ten varieties that will go into the field in three weeks. More seeding in there too, the plants have to keep rolling out so we can stay on schedule. In between a little construction work on the Packing shed, teaching a couple of classes at the Community college and…
Picture of the week
Look at all of those anemones!