Tag Archives: fall

Whats going on down on the farm?

CSA boxes are packed on Wed. Mornings,  but not this week due to theThanksgiving Holiday. Big boxes were packed last week to hold members through.

Lately,  we’ve been focusing on getting ready for winter.  We harvested the last of the crops in summer blocks, (including sweet potatoes), built beds to be ready for spring,  and sow cover crops. More and more Fall crops have been maturing, as well as those in our late summer high tunnel,  so there is more diversity of produce available.
We also got the North and Eastern sides of the pack shed mulched-and have inoculated the wood chips with Wine cap mushroom spawn.
 We are getting in a new Delaware rooster this week as well,  and have found a good home for “Ranger”, who has been doing a very good job of taking care of the flock in the meantime.
From this point on, we will have plenty of harvests left to do,  but most of the other time sensitive duties are winding down quickly.
Sherry Carroll

Look what is coming this Fall to CCCC Sustainable Farming!

Non-credit options for courses that can help increase your skills and understanding of topics integral to a successful farming business.

Call 919-545-8044 or 919-718-7500 to register or register online at http://www.cccc.edu/ecd/find-classes/

Look under “Agriculture and Natural Resources” for:

Tractors and Farm Machinery C-3160

Practical, hands-on course focused on farm machinery and agricultural equipment. Topics include selection and operation of tractors & implements, fencing, hand-tools and irrigation systems appropriate for a small-scale diversified farm. Upon completion, students should be able to explain the basic principles of equipment operation and management. Andrew McMahan, Thursday, 8/17/17 to 12/13/17, 9am-12:40. $175.55

Organic Crop Production C-3161

This course will present the fundamentals of organic vegetable growing and offer hands-on training in the most important skills involved. Grow, harvest, and utilize a variety of vegetables organically, learn about irrigation installation and season extension structures. Focus is on Fall crops, for planting and for harvest. Cheryl McNeill, Monday, 8/21/17 to 12/11/17, 9am-12:40. $175.55

From Seed to Plant C-3162

Practical, hands-on course focused on the techniques and environment for successful plant propagation. Emphasis is placed on seed propagation and other propagation techniques including: grafting, stem and root propagation, micro-propagation. Upon completion, students should be able to successfully propagate useful plants for farm and orchard. Robin Kohanowich, Tuesday, 8/22/17 to 12/12/17, 8:30am to 12:20. $175.55

To Register call 919-545-8044 or 919-718-7500. Space is limited, call soon!

What’s in the Box

Hello everyone, in this week’s CSA box we have a selection of delicious fall vegetables. For your eating pleasure:

Baby Beets, Okra, Eggplant, Garlic, Sweet and Green Peppers, Hot and Extra Hot Peppers, Cukes.

What can we do with all this you ask?  Allow me to suggest…

Pickled beets! Ratatouille! and Hot Sauce!

Enjoy folks, and see you next week.

What’s Happening!?… on the Farm..

Recently we received a  pair of guests on the farm. “Una” and “Little Bit” are two Tamworth pigs who came to visit the student farm at the end of August to help remove an old nemesis of the farm, “Johnson Grass”. In the last few weeks, Una and Little Bit have done an excellent job removing the grass from one tenth of an acre on the farm. Now that they have successfully completed their job, they will be leaving the farm this weekend. We would like to thank Una and Little Bit for a job well done as well as our own Linda Bradford and her son Sean for facilitating the visit. Check out the before and after pics!

That’s not all going on this week on the farm, we are awaiting the arrival of six new Delaware pullets as new members to the flock, our cool weather crops have been put into the ground and are well on their way to becoming beautiful adult plants, and we are expecting strawberry plants anytime so that they may be planted next week . Lots of things going on down on the farm. Remember to support local farmers by buying local!


What’s Happening? Fall cover crops!

Chard and Cauliflower growing in rows with cover crop between

Chard and Cauliflower growing in rows with remains of summer cover crop between

As we all start donning our long sleeves and pants, the farmscape is rapidly changing. Fall vegetables like lettuces and mustards, radishes, cauliflower, broccoli, chard and beets are growing strong in the greenhouse and fields while summer friends like tomatillos, tomatoes, peppers and basil are nearing their ends. With all the nice rain, all our farm plants are looking beautiful! While we are getting this lovely rain and soil temperatures are still warm, now is a good time to plant fall cover crops as many farmers are doing. There are many benefits to using cover crops:

  • Microbe mess halls. Cover crops add tons of organic matter to the soil which feeds microbes that help make micro-nutrients available to your plants and create humus in complex relationships and can combat numerous diseases that enters the soil.
  • Benefactor of the beneficials. Various cover crops’ flowers yield nectar for beneficial insects as well as providing them with cover and dwelling. These crops can feed these beneficials to keep them around when nothing else is in flower.
  • Nitrogen Nets. Cover crops love to hoard nitrogen and legumes like hairy vetch, clover and pea can even convert nitrogen from the air to make available for your next crop. Once these plants cover an area, excess nitrogen cannot leach away. Gluttony stays in check because all surplus nitrogen is taken up by the plants and then returned to the soil once the plants are tilled in. This nitrogen will be passed on to the next crop that grows in its place. Using legume cover crops like alfafa, crimson clover and hairy vetch, in combination poly-culture with a grass like rye or wheat can give farmers’ fields a nitrogen and organic matter boost.
  • A lovely prison for potential runaway soil. The roots of the cover crops buttress the soil, preventing erosion of your humus rich life-giving topsoil.
  • Bane of Weeds: Some crops like winter rye and vetch will smother other weeds competing for space. Greedy grass like rye and oats are allelopathic, which means they release chemicals into the soil which can eradicate the germination and growth of competing seedling species. Some farmers even use winter rye and hairy vetch to create a no-till mulch situation.
  • Nutrient Bank. Once the implementation of cover crops becomes a yearly routine, gardeners will own a rich nutrient investment in the soil.

Post by Andrea Wood