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Out of the snowbank and into the desert.

June 2, 2015

Hello from Spring in Newport. Fiddleheads are out on the side of the road, apple blossoms are gorgeous, and peas are up! Now that we’ve stopped complaining about how much snow we had last winter, we can start complaining about how dry it’s been. And, don’t worry, we’re well versed in how to complain about the weather.

The last 4 weeks have seen only about 1/2 an inch of rain in our fields: this has some advantages and disadvantages. On the good side, we’ve been able to buckle down hard to get almost all the tillage and field prep done – we’re back farming in Newport this year and have to clean some old fields up pretty thoroughly to make the land suitable for some of our more delicate seeds (i.e. carrots and other small seeded crops).

The downside is that everything we put in needs some rain to germinate! Bigger seeds like peas and beans and beets are alright – they can be planted deeper where there is still a bit of moisture in the soil, but all the brassicas we’re planting now (broccoli, radish, cabbage, kale, etc.) have tiny seeds, so need to be placed just under the surface of the soil in order to germinate and emerge properly. Unfortunately, that part of the soil profile is the fastest to dry out, meaning it’s hard for them to get the moisture they need.

Oh well, what can you do except write a blog post and hope for the best.

Here are a few pictures from the farm.

Green grass and dry dirt!

Green grass and dry dirt!

I planted these asparagus crowns in 2011, forgot about them for four years in an old pasture, and ta-da! spring dinner.

I planted these asparagus crowns in 2011, forgot about them for four years in an old pasture, and ta-da! spring dinner.

This is when the big tractors really pull their weight, if you will, tillage season!

This is when the big tractors really pull their weight, if you will, tillage season!

The results of our new equipment purchase - raised beds to grow straighter carrots in our stony, upland soil.

The results of our new equipment purchase – raised beds to grow straighter carrots in our stony, upland soil.

can you guess??

can you guess??

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