Wellfleet Farmer’s Market–First of the year!

The musicians playing in this video are called Beat Greens! They sang a lot of really awesome songs. This one is called “No Basta Rezar” by Venezuelan Activist Ali Primera. Translation Here
More about Ali Primera Here and Here

We had a great day at the first Wellfleet Farmer’s Market behind Preservations Hall in Wellfleet center. See us here every Wednesday 8am-1pm.

It was a stressful morning–my wonderful bosses kept me out late last night paddle boarding so I wasn’t as prepared as I would have liked. My plan was to get up at 4am, collect eggs, have a nice relaxing breakfast, and then have more than an hour and a half to harvest, wash eggs, and generally organize myself. I would arrive at Debbie & John’s house at 6am, collapse the tent I had set up earlier so I could use it at the market, and load up Debbie’s car. We would leave by 6:30 and be the first ones at the Market setting up. I would have plenty of time before 8am when the market was to open.
But–
I sleep-shut off my alarm, waking up instead at 5:07 to Baby Rooster crowing his adolescent calls. I had far too much to do and went into a slight panic. At 6:45, I got a well timed text from Debbie. All it said was “Breathe”. I was still at the farm, rushing around and “letting go” of a lot of little things: no time to breakfast or coffee, we don’t need the tent, we don’t need a cute vase of herb sprigs, we don’t need every carrot and every bit of spinach, we don’t need the cool awesome chalk board I am half done making.

Deb and I left the house at 7:25 and it all turned out fine. There were a few things we forgot–chair, something to hang the scale up to, tape. When I realized I didn’t have anything to hang the scale up to (the original idea was to string it up to the frame of the tent which I had purposefully left behind) I became a little anxious–most of our pricing for our produce was based on weighted measure, all of which I was going to do during the first bit of the market. Deb found something great, though, an outdoor hanging plant pole stand which I stuck into the ground. Before she got there with it, I was holding the scale up in one hand, and placing produce on it with the other hand–AWKWARD and not really good for the scale as I kept having to put it down on the ground to bundle up each thing.

It was nice to meet so many new folks and especially to see a majority young farmers!! AND there were some people interested in our CSA!

Tessa came a little later and Debbie soon left to talk to some people about creating a Democracy School on cape. Minutes before closing out the market, I told Tess that I rode in with Debbie and that we would have to pack all our stuff into her car to get it back to the farm. She laughed. Her car was filled pretty high already with other things. But we got all in, filled to the brim and my head wasn’t even impaled by the flower pot pole on the ride back!

We actually sold out of all our stuff!
We didn’t bring that much, but this was what we had:
6 dozen eggs
1 1/4 lb mustard greens
a heaping pile of over wintered carrots
3lb chard
3 1/2 lb spinach

It was low key and a good trial run–next week we will have a whole lot more!

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After several days of frustration, John Conquers Stump

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Our Cherry Tomatoes from our own saved seed have journeyed OUTSIDE!!!

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Look at this simple string trellis for our outer row of peas!

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The Plight of the Hungry Lazy Chicks

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The Cornish hens are the yellow ones. Those are the meat birds we received in the mail last week. We put them together with the 2nd round of our own Pure Joy Farm hatchlings. The difference is amazing between the breeds. The Cornish hen chicks are interested in two things: eating and laying down, both at the same time if they can manage it. The Araucana mixes on the other hand are already feisty like their mothers. When I lift the screen containing them all in the box, a few attempt to fly out, some perching on the lip of the box. They too are very interested in eating. When the Araucana babies think the Cornish ones are getting a little too comfortable in their reclined eating positions, the Araucanas swoop and flutter in, chasing the Cornish chicks away from the food. The Cornish chicks being the lazy little piggies that they are, just move over, lay down and peck at the ground for awhile until eventually making it back to the food tray.

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Mushroom Mushroom!

Mushroom Mushroom!

We recently received our Shiitake mushroom plugs from Uprising Seeds in Washington State.  (http://www.uprisingorganics.com/)

Using some thick branches John and I felled the other day, Tessa and I drilled holes to the exact size of the plugs, hammered the plugs in and sealed them by painting melted beeswax (melted using a metal bowl atop a pot of boiling water, double boiler style) on the top of the plugs.  It was a good project for Tessa and I to spend our afternoon doing.  It had been over a week since we were able to work together because she has been finishing up her last semester of school!  We got to laugh and vent and play a little and later went over to John and Debbie’s for some super delicious butternut squash chili (from our last season’s store of butternuts) and fresh cooked chard from the garden.  Farm family dinner! I love it!

It is Debbie’s special project this year to try out growing our own mushrooms.  We ordered one hundred plugs and after drilling, plugging, and painting wax over them, Tess and I moved the logs down under the yurt where it would be super shady for them.  At dinner, Debbie brought up the fact that…”Don’t they need rain?”.  The answer is yeah. Yeah they need rain, or else some sort of moisture to get the decomposition process going.  I was so obsessed with finding the perfect shady place, this aspect of what mushrooms need really didn’t cross my mind.  Still looking for a better place for them…they might end up leaning against the northwest wall of the shower seeing as the sun doesn’t really touch that area through the tree cover.

It is important to use fresh cut logs so that there will be food available to the mycelium. Also, the logs shouldn’t lean on the ground, as that would encourage too quick a decomposition before the mushrooms take their hold–placing them log cabin style on top of logs is a good route to take or standing them on a wood palate and leaning them against a tree or other structure is another good idea.

This is a long term project–we won’t get mushrooms for about a year.  Early next spring, we will submerge the logs for 24-48 hours to create a “monsoon season”, enabling the mushrooms to fruit.  Then we will see if this afternoon’s work was worth it!  I have never tasted fresh Shiitake mushrooms.  I eagerly await the experience.

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Debbie’s Sprout Experiment

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Debbie is using our unused vermicompost farm as an experimental sun flower seed sprout farm. Today, we moved it into the shade of the North wall of the Greenhouse. There have been no sprouts yet and she says maybe the seeds hadn’t soaked long enough before setting them into the bin layers. Usually you soak for 24 hours and then keep them wet while allowing the water to strain through. The vermi bins are doing a good job of straining through the water, however, they may have been drying out in the sun too quickly and not watered enough. We will see what happens though! As Debbie says, “Everything is an experiment!”photo-51

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