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Keeping on farming

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This is a tomato seedling – a “Stakebreaker” tomato to be exact (and yes, I grew it mostly for the name), a new variety for us, but an heirloom tomato (so it’s been around a long time), red in colour, medium sized, with a delicious, sweet flavour complemented by an acid tartness (description courtesy of the seed seller).

Started around 6 weeks ago, back in early March, it is one of approximately 7000 tomato plants we have seeded. Stakebreaker is one of 85 varieties we ended up growing for 2020.

We will plant close to 1200 (and maybe more) of these tomato plants on our farm next month. They should provide enough fruit for our CSA members, our farmers’ market customers, our new roadside stand, and ourselves. The remaining plants will be sold so others can grow their own, and enjoy the experience of picking & eating a sun-ripened, juicy, fresh-from-the-garden tomato.

We weren’t going to seed so many tomatoes. Most years we overdo it – growing more than we can plant,  sell, and even give away to local community gardens & food banks. In the end a lot get tossed onto the compost pile. But this year we’re anticipating a lot more people will want to plant gardens. Certainly the seed companies are being inundated with orders for seeds. Vegetable plants should be in high demand as well. So we seeded a few more …

Of course we don’t really know what to expect this season.

  • Our CSA has seen a surge in applicants. Membership is up more than 35% right now, and we continue to get emails & calls each day from interested people. We are still accepting new members.
  • Farmers’ markets are now considered an essential service in Ontario. But it is still uncertain if, when and how they will operate. Our Georgetown market seems likely to be running in some form, but we’re still awaiting word on North York. And will our customers come out to the markets anyway?
  • We have been asked by customers & others to deliver vegetable boxes into Toronto and are considering this as well, though our preference is to stay closer to home.

Whatever the upcoming months will bring, we know everyone has to eat! We remain committed to growing the most nutritious, healthy and best tasting vegetables possible. We are doing our best to keep ourselves healthy & well. And we will do all we can to provide our customers with their food in a safe way.

So we keep on farming!

We are well into spring. The sun shines stronger (sometimes), the ground is warming, and crops are growing.

Amy & Sage are spending most of their days now in the greenhouse, transplanting tomatoes from their seeding trays into pots.

The big greenhouse is starting to fill up. Along with the tomatoes, we are transplanting peppers & eggplant.

The small greenhouse where we seed everything is overflowing …

And the trailer is loaded with trays of kale, spinach, green onions, broccoli & sweet peas which we expect to plant out in the field this week – if the weather cooperates!

Out on the farm the snow peas are up – pictured here with a bit of snow, which fell earlier this week.

And the garlic is growing well …

… as is the rhubarb.

We are preparing the fields for crops.

Our old apricot trees in the backyard are in blossom – a sure sign of spring. Unfortunately it has been cold, windy or wet these last few days so the bees have not been out pollinating. But tomorrow promises to be sunny and the trees should be abuzz with bees!

The willow tree by the pond is showing green – always the first tree to turn.

As usual Sage and the Flynns remind us to chill – leading by example!

We received this timely & encouraging message on our sidewalk the other day, from some young, talented artists in the neighbourhood.

Thank you!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 thoughts on “Keeping on farming

  1. Ron, so good to get your take on what’s happening.  Thank you. Hedy

  2. I enjoy your posts. Informative and positive.
    Looking forward to photos of your road side stand.
    Happy farming!

  3. We are so excited for the CSAs to start. Veggies just aren’t the same over the winter. Anne, Patrick & Joe

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