Peregrine Farm News Vol. 13 #4, 3/11/16

What’s been going on!

Shorts, sunscreen, wide brim hats, what happened to late winter?  With the warm temperatures we have been running hard the last two weeks and gotten quite a bit done.  Just wish it wasn’t quite so warm yet.

Jennie has single handedly pruned all the blueberries and while it will probably be a small crop this year due to the unseasonably warm December that caused some blooms to open and then be killed, the ones left should be large and on more open bushes.

We did get part of the deer fence finished around one field and will get back on the big loop next week but we got a bit side tracked cleaning up from the mess made by the backhoe/bush/tree removal.  Many days burning brush and hauling stumps out of the way so we could get around center of the farm again.  The new fence seems to be working great, no sign of entry in the young tender lettuce field.

Lots of planting going on including all the onions, two thirds of the spring vegetables, many beds of lettuce, the tuberoses and dahlias too.  Of course now that the rain spigot has shut off and the temperatures are rising we had to spend most of this last Tuesday getting the irrigation up and running to keep everything happy.  It’s either feast for famine.

Pictures of the Week


The new fence around the lettuce field and partly mulched tuberoses


Incredible Anemones and Jennie pulling Beets in the next tunnel

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Peregrine Farm News Vol. 9 #8, 5/9/12

What’s been going on!

I was reading the other day that this spring and March in particular, was the warmest spring since 1910.  We all have been seeing the results in earlier blooming perennials, trees leafing out and some insects showing up sooner.  This effect should become less and less as we head into the summer months and more normal temperatures.  One of the most striking results so far is we began picking blueberries yesterday, a full two weeks earlier than last year and the earliest date ever.

With last week’s heat things are really jumping now.  The tomatoes took off and are growing by what seems like inches a day.  The staff has spent parts of the last two days suckering them and tying them up for the first time.  We are trying to get ready for pepper planting next week but the tomatoes and blueberries have to be seen to first.  I got the beds for the hot peppers tilled and the cover crop for the no-till sweet peppers rolled down, hopefully we can lay the landscape fabric on the beds tomorrow.

Big Mother’s Day and Graduation weekend to get ready for too but we are also quickly heading towards the Farm to Fork Picnic the following weekend, Sunday May 20th.  If you haven’t gotten your tickets yet for this important fundraising event for new farmer training programs there are still a few left.  Great food from an amazing number of local chefs and farmers, local beer and wine and local music!

Picture of the Week

Pepper beds ready for fabric, lettuce waiting to be cut, blueberries calling to us from on the hill

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Peregrine Farm News Vol. 9 #2, 3/28/12

What’s been going on?

A bit sporadic on the newsletter due to a computer that is slowly dying, some days it wants to play and others not, today is a good day (so far). The good news is a new computer is arriving next week so once I get it up and running all will be back to normal.

The question that everyone has been asking all winter is “How is this warm weather going to affect the season?” Well the first shoe has certainly dropped with just about everything that could leaf out or bloom did so this past week, if it hadn’t already done so. Some things almost a month earlier than normal! This early bud break is mostly due to warm soil temperatures so it makes sense. The other sign of warm soils it that some of the warm season weeds, like crab grass, have begun to germinate. This could actually be a good thing if we can cultivate and dispense with at least once generation of warm season weeds before they really get going or before we plant the crops that they normally come up in.

One thing that should not be true is that warm winters mean more bugs. The entomologists tell us that this is just an old wives tale. They too may come out earlier but the thought that cold winters kill off more insects is only true if we have really cold temperatures, like below zero, which we just don’t ever get here anyway. Now don’t hold me to this as almost anything is possible with the changing climate, new insects are moving in that we have never seen before like the brown marmorated stink bug moving down from the north and the kudzu beetle moving in from the south.

We have been cultivating (weeding) and planting like crazy. Almost all the spring crops have been gone through once and some are getting a second pass beginning today. The first tomatoes were planted in the sliding tunnels yesterday and all of the main crop tomatoes were moved up into larger containers on Monday. Soon we will have to be covering the Big Tops to prepare for the big tomato array! I am taking advantage of these few cool mornings to finish up the firewood cutting for next winter and then it will be time to retire the chainsaw for one more year. This big question now is will we get one more frost or not?

Picture of the Week

A seasonal view- early tomatoes, across the early lettuce to the anemones under shade cloth

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