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Status of the Farm and the Farmer / Re: 2016 Growing Season... General updates...
« Last post by joseph on 2016-October-27 08:25:03 AM »

On October 26th, yesterday, I finished harvesting the fields, and tilled. They are ready for winter!

Before snow-cover arrives, I want to plant a few winter-hardy crops like garlic, rye, wheat.

It was a great growing season. My cowpea and tepary bean landraces finally matured this growing season. I'm very happy with them. Since it was the international year of the pulse, I also grew fenugreek and lentils for the first time. The lentils did wonderful. They were a grocery store variety. Not yet a landrace, but at least I can grow them. The fenugreek made some seed, but didn't prosper being transplanted. The runner beans did well. I even found a few with tuberous roots! The common beans thrived.

I'm very content with the new flour corn I selected from the out of the hybrid swarm of North/South varieties. I'm calling it Unity Flour Corn.

I grew a patch of squash which were interspecies hybrids between mixta and moschata squash.  I'm really loving those. It would be nice to move the orange color and better taste of the moschata squash into the cushaws.

High Resolution

Yellow mustard spice and breadseeds thrived.
Farmer's Market / Re: 2016 Farmer's Market
« Last post by joseph on 2016-October-21 09:00:30 AM »

October 22nd will be the last farmer's market for the season.

We'll bring honey as always. Stock up now to save a trip out to Paradise during the winter.

I've been picking lots and lots of apples, and will make them available by the half-bushel for a great price: $10 per half-bushel.

I've also dug carrots: Huge carrots great for soups and cakes.

There is a little bit of winter squash left, and lots of decorative gourds, and some pumpkins. I'm bringing pumpkins with hull-less seeds. Carve a jack-o-lantern, and save the seeds. There are no annoying shells to remove before eating the seeds. I'm bringing some already dried pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, and yellow mustard spice.

I'm expecting to pick some sage.

There are a few tomatoes left.

I'm expecting to bring turnips with greens.

Thanks for a great season!
My Varieties -- Descriptions & Grow Reports / Grapes
« Last post by joseph on 2016-October-11 09:06:35 PM »
I expanded the vineyard today by planting 13 more grape vines. I am currently growing:

NameDescriptionHarvest Date
CanadicePink. Seedless. Small fruits. TartMid-season.
ConcordBlack. Seeded. Mild flavor.Very Late.
GlenoraBlack. Seedless. Tart and sweet. Vigorous. Very tasty.Late.
InterlakenGreen. Seedless. Very Sweet. Vigorous.Earliest.
Pink Table GrapePink. Seeded. Sweet and Mild. Mid-season.
Two Mystery VarietiesUnknown.Unknown.

I have vineyards now which are separated in elevation by 300 feet. That should help provide an extended harvest for each variety.
Farmer's Market / Re: 2016 Farmer's Market
« Last post by joseph on 2016-September-23 11:30:09 PM »
We're heading into the farmer's market in a few minutes.

We are bringing honey like always.

The truck is filled to capacity with butternut and maxima winter squash. Pricing is $10 per crate for storage squash, or $1 to $4 for smaller squash. Maybe up to $10 for some of the 60 pound maximas. There was a second crop of buttercups. I am thrilled because they are my favorite tasting and best selling squash. There are also a few birdhouse gourds and mixta squash.

I'm bringing Glenora black seedless grapes. They are my favorite tasting variety. I'm also bringing rooted cuttings.

Also bringing:

dry beans
sunflower seeds
storage onions
yellow mustard spice
and other things

Farmer's Market / Re: Honey
« Last post by joseph on 2016-September-22 10:19:24 PM »

Here we are just before we robbed the honey a few weeks ago. Pants tucked inside boots, to avoid bees crawling up pant-legs.

The year previously, on a "check-only" day,  I thought that I'd get by with the wrong pair of boots. Bad choice. They stung my ankles like crazy!!!! Good thing that I had taken an anti-histamine prior to entering the bee yard. That year, we had some really pissy bees. The queens or the queen's mother's in two colonies may  have got impregnated by some africanized drones.

We use a leaf-blower to remove the bees from the honey boxes.

The bees march right back into the colony:

In the spring of 2016, all 30 colonies were dead. So we replaced them with packaged bees. At $100 per colony, the bees in the bed of the truck I went to pick them up in were worth more than the truck.
Farmer's Market / Re: Honey
« Last post by keen101 on 2016-September-22 09:39:33 PM »
mmm. sounds good. If i remember correctly the clover honey is generally the lightest color honey you find (other than super processed honey). They've done some studies and often the light clear "honey" that comes from china often is not even honey at all but pure adulterated high fructose corn syrup. Generally the local Colorado honey that we've bought before is the really dark stuff. That stuff is good.

I'd love to see more posts and photos of your family's Bee Keeping adventures. I find that trade fascinating. Would love to know more and hear a farmers narration and perspective and down to earth vibe.
Farmer's Market / Re: 2016 Farmer's Market
« Last post by joseph on 2016-September-09 09:45:01 PM »

The truck is loaded and ready to go to market first thing in the morning.

It contains:

Red Curie winter squash,
An orange pumpkin,
tomatoes, including some really tasty yellow/red bi-colored ones,
the last of the yellow plums. They are very sweet this week. Purple plums will be ready next week,
sweet corn,
And perhaps a few things I forgot to mention.

No tobacco this week.
Dry beans may be ready to harvest next week. I just started picking the earliest of the early.

With frost expected any day now, I expect that I'll start bringing winter squash next week.

Landrace Gardening Blog / Re: Saving Corn Seed
« Last post by joseph on 2016-August-29 03:37:12 PM »
corn seeds are viable by the fresh eating stage, even if they are not yet fully mature, so you could pick and taste cobs then dry out any that taste great to save for seed.

I taste sweet corn by chopping off an end of the cob with a pair of secateurs (or more dangerously with a knife)... I can taste it a number of times during a growing season. It looks like this after a few tastes. Also, corn plants often produce multiple cobs per plant.

Landrace Gardening Blog / Saving Corn Seed
« Last post by couloir007 on 2016-August-29 03:05:33 PM »
I have searched this topic, and I guess I need to let the corn dry on the stalk. So my question is, how does one determine wich ears to save from a taste point of view? How can I do a taste test if I need to leave in place? Can I not pick an ear, cut a quarter length off, eat some and let the other dry?

Thank you.
Farmer's Market / Re: 2016 Farmer's Market
« Last post by joseph on 2016-August-28 10:48:05 AM »
We took the following to the farmer's market on 2016-08-27:

Yellow Mustard Seed Spice,
Sweet Corn,
Dry Beans, (the earliest of the early harvest)

We expect to have about the same sorts of things next week. I'm working today on getting the breadseed poppies ready. I think that I'll get one more harvest from the juicy apricots.

Also for the market on September 3rd, I'm expecting to have crates of sweet corn for freezing. Price will be $10 per crate. It was the best seller last week.

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