What’s been going on!
So I am afraid to say that it looks like we may not get any blueberries this season. We knew way back last winter that we would have a smaller crop when they started blooming in the unusually warm December weather. When they started blooming again in late March we felt like there was still a substantial number of blooms so maybe an OK crop. 26 degrees on April 6th reduced the number of berries even further. Now with so few berries out there the birds are taking everyone just as they begin to show any color.
We have seen this twice before. In 2001 when we had what everyone now refers to as “the Easter Freeze” with 24 degrees on April 18th and again in 2007 with five nights in the 20’s the first week of April. Both years we had a tiny fruit set which the birds and squirrels took either all or most of. What happens when we have late freezes like that it not only kills domesticated fruit buds but wild fruiting plants too, leaving not much for the wildlife who in turn eat where the pickin’s are good, our bushes!
Could we net the bushes and save what we have, sure if we had netting here and when weighing the cost of netting and the labor to put it on and take it off to pick it is hard to say if it is worth it with a small crop. So now we will wait and see if this flock of birds will move on or not.
The good news is we have gotten all the peppers in the ground and they look great. The big planting of tomatoes we finally got pruned and tied up for the first time and they look happy too. Every day we look for a ripe tomato in the little tunnels knowing that sometime in the next week we should be able to eat one! Take that you birds!
Picture of the Week
Even the fake rubber snakes don’t slow the birds down
What’s going to be at the market?
Did you donate to RAFI? Let’s talk this week.
Fewer options for lettuce this week with the first of the crispy and sweet Summer Crisp lettuce in red and green and some Green Boston. Really nice Escarole. Beautiful Lacinato/Dinosaur/Cavalo Nero Kale. The first of the various Radicchio’s with round red, some of the speckled variety and plenty of the heavy less bitter Sugarloaf, great for salads or for grilling.
It is Fennel Fest, get it while it is perfect! More Beets with the bullseye striped Italian Chioggias, Red and Golden too. Cilantro, Dill and Italian Parsley. Basil! Green Onions and the first of fresh Long Red of Tropea (Torpedo) onions. Baby Leeks. More Cucumbers.
Slowly the flower department fills. Beautiful tall Larkspur (annual delphinium). The first of the awesome Campanula (Bell flower). Fragrant Stocks. Delicate Sapponaria. Sunflowers. Crepe paper like Poppies. Amazing Bouquets.
As a reminder if there is anything that you would like for us to hold for you at market just let us know by e-mail, by the evening before, and we will be glad to put it aside for you. Just so you know, sometimes not everything listed will be at the Wednesday market.
Hope to see you all at the market!
Alex, Betsy and Jennie