Seedtime & Harvest Newsletter This week’s produce is bright, beautiful and delicious!
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June 6, 2014Hopefully, the dry cycle has been broken.I have never seen our soils so dry and so powdery. Winter offered no snow, rain, or ice; just intense cold. April brought us no showers. May was also dry. Mother’s Day evening produced storms and tornadoes all around us. We missed the damage and the rains. Then May added to the irregular weather with a deep freeze, 24 degrees, on the 21st & 22nd. Our hoop house furnaces were blasting and the skinny house’s tomatoes were covered in layers of fabric. Many gardeners lost their tomato plants even while covered.
Finally, last weekend, we received .35 inches of rain while farmers around us received an inch of moisture with some parts of Sioux Falls reporting 2 ½ inches of rain.
What a difference natural rains make in our lives. I had spent my days rotating different hoop houses and gardens through the irrigation system, trying to give everything just enough water to keep it growing, not over-watering anything, yet watering just enough to stimulate newly planted seeds to germinate. Beans popped up almost immediately; peas are almost non-existent. Beets and spinach came up easily; carrots are moody and the rows are just starting to show little green frills.
Weeds? Weeds grow best in dry conditions. Weeds grow in wet conditions. Weeds grow when rainfall is just perfect. Damp soils make weeding a breeze. As our crew assembles for the summer, they will spend many days weeding.
Tuesday morning, guys Dolan, Brad, and Ryan weeded the green onions, shallots and lettuces. The gals, Maria, Miranda, and Alissa weeded the regular onions. Noah decided to hang out with the girls. He especially likes Maria and Miranda.
As he hiked along behind the girls, he said, “I can burp, Grandma. Burp. Burp.”
“Girls don’t like guys that burp!” I said.
“Listen, Grandma. I can burp. Burp. Burp.” Noah is almost three.
Monday, I was the companion of choice. Noah spent the entire day with Grandma.
He drove the Gator for me. “You do the gas, Grandma, and I’ll do the steering wheel.”
“Hey! Where are you going? Stay on the path.
“What are you doing on the grass?
“Whoa! Straighten it out! Turn the other way.”
Before we could plant Micro Herbs and Greens, we had to go find Noah’s Mickey Mouse scoop. Grandma had a scoop and Noah needed a scoop, too.
As Grandma dug dirt out of the big dirt tote, Noah dug dirt, too. When Grandma patted the dirt in the micro trays, Noah patted dirt, too. When Grandma tossed her scoop into the tote, Noah tossed his scoop into the grass.
When Grandma weeded the spinach, Noah needed a little weed to weed, too.
I wonder who will be Noah’s choice tomorrow?
More rain Tuesday evening. Beautiful!!!!
Storms on Thursday. Hail. Tornadoes. Are you all ok? How did your gardens fare? What about your car?
It seems the storm split, moving north towards Luverne and south to Sioux Center. We received a very light rain. There was only one drop in the rain gauge.
Maria, near Sioux Center, had lots of large hail. “The ground was white like snow. The soybeans are just sticks.”
Miranda, from the other side of Sioux Center, received only heavy rain.
Our total rainfall is at 1.45 inches.
We are grateful, for the rain, for the lack of hail and wind. Our crops look beautiful, lush, and vibrantly alive.