What a long strange spring it has been.
It is common in June this year to keep a blanket at the end of the bed. Lots of summer crops do not like the chilly nights, starting with tomatoes, peppers and eggplant, along with watermelon and zucchini. A lot of Summer program participants at the farm dress appropriately in layers due to the fickle weather and cool breezes.
Too bad the wacky weather has not brought in much soaking rain. Remember that the farmers, (the organic, all natural ones seeking sustainable practices) like a nice soaking rain in the evening, especially after transplanting a whole bunch of seedlings, while the sun shines brilliantly during the day. Though cool, the sun has reared its warm self on these long solstice days without enough moisture.The rain barrel runneth empty. Most of the fields are dry, except a few whose long, tall grass (now mowed) hide the pent-up mud by way of low elevation and snowy winters. The large multi-gallon tank remains at the ready and in use for germinating carrots and growing onions.
One must adapt to the conditions, especially on a diverse farm where each field is its own climate and unique growing standards, or idiosyncrasies. This flexibility means the farmer (who has spent most of the off-season busily staring at spread sheets, interpreting soil tests and reading the latest no-til vs. soil nutrient density arguments) must make special considerations for each field, and crop, so as to ensure viable growth, cultivation and success. Which brings us to tomatoes in late June.
© 2014, Jon Belber. All rights reserved. Friends of Holly Hill Farm