We spent the afternoon on Saturday trying to beat the approaching rainy week and get the field in slightly better shape. The new New Entry farm manager, Matt, had already plowed the field twice, so our goal was to mark the field, to determine where the beds were going to go and rake together a 3 foot wide raised bed and plant our potatoes and onion sets. They start out looking like this:
With a little luck (and some hard work), they’ll turn into 82 potato plants and 240 onions. These 10 pounds of potatoes and less than 3 pounds of onion sets should transform into a couple hundred pounds of vegetables. (I hope.)
Even though the field had been plowed, it was still hard work shaping the bed by hand. Anywhere the tractor had passed over the soil showed the effects of compaction, and we had to break it up with a fork and hoe.
Sadly, the peas were hurt by the mini-drought we in late March/early April. Most failed to germinate, and I’ll have to replant. Once the farm and gardens get going, I start following the weather fairly obsessively. It affects not just what comes up and what doesn’t, but also when and how we can work in the fields. After two days of heavy rain, it’ll take a while for the fields to dry out enough for us to rake together more beds. But we sure did need the water for the plants, though. (And we needed a day or two to recover from all raking and hoeing, too. It takes a while to get into proper farm shape.)