THIS WEEK’S GROWER NOTES
We have the best Growers in the Wiregrass! Please learn more about them on our Grower Page.
SMART DOC RESOURCES:editor’s note – this message comes to us from Africa! You can find photos of this adventure on Virgina’s facebook page. Greetings from Smartdocs. We’re still a go these next couple of weeks even though I will be visiting Africa and look forward to studying with my friend the rootman(the original herbalogists) and hopefully will be back with some new ideas and products. In the meantime, Clifford will be hydro and gardening so he will be the contact for questions. Also I want to thank our fellow farmer friends from the Market (Greg and Carol) from Mayim farms for a great presentation at the Backyard Garden and Farmers’ Workshop. I look forward to more information and workshops and will pass info about these great free sessions on to you all. Greg is a wealth of information and we look forward to meeting with him. Happy gardening (& eating)
Blessings, Virginia And Clifford
PS Don’t forget our Hydroponics 101 workshop at the Dothan Nurseries on Feb 16th from 10-12!
BAIN HOME GARDENS: Good day! This week’s farm tidbits included finalizing our succession planting schedule through Spring. Last year, we did not do well with succession planting which lead to gaps in availability of produce. This year we are eliminating that problem with planning and STICKING TO SAID PLAN! Easier said than done!
Included in this planning is our “grow to order” produce. We have received some requests to grow specifics from some of you marketeers. If you have a request & haven’t had the opportunity to reach out yet, now is the time! You can message us via our Facebook page or over on our Webpage . Till next week – from our family to yours!
AVALON FARMS: The history of Avalon Farms, part 2. (See last week’s newsletter for part 1)
The story of those ladies homesteading here has always meant a lot to me. Being a woman who chose a male dominated profession back in the 80s, I’ve faced a few you-can’t-do-that scenarios, but I did. (It took me 4 years, 1 semester and 1.5 babies to complete my Bachelors Degree in Computer Science.) Sort of like some of the looks I get when I say I have a sustainable market garden that produces clean, nutrient dense food. “You do what?”
A year after we moved here in 2007, we found ourselves unemployed with 3 kids at home. I’d always helped my Dad with the garden when I was a kid so I was inspired to plant a BIG garden to help support the family. For 3 years, as Wendy’s Produce, we farmed and participated in 4 farmer’s markets, including the first 2 years of the Market at Dothan. From those years came our family motto: “it’s better than picking peas in July!”
When hubs was blessed with an engineering job at Ft Rucker we had to reevaluate the farm. With 2 kids away at college that only left me and the youngest. He and I did one more summer, then I was offered an engineering job. That was 6 years ago, and one very stressful office job later for me. I wish I had never hung up my farming hat. Sad how much time I lost.
Been doing farming now full time (by myself) for 3 years. Each year I learn a little more and do a little better. I’ve had a lot of “well that didn’t work” and “have to figure out a better way” moments. I won’t say that I “love” farming. It’s hard physical work. The endless to do list and summer temperatures are daunting, but I will say I love providing healthy, tasty food to our community. Hearing one of you say how good something tasted makes all the hard work worth while.
Just bought my first pair of overalls. They’re from Duluth Trading, not Sears and Roebuck, but I think they still count. I’m committed to seeing this adventure through. I think those ladies that originally worked this land would approve.
HORTONS FARM: Last week we shared a little about the sowthistle growing on our property. So far we’ve only found the one plant by the chicken coop, in which case we’ll need to let it bloom to reseed.
What we are seeing a lot more of is chickweed.
Many of you know that I had to fetch my mother from an upstate hospital last month following a pneumonia scare. While there with her I mentioned (after listening to her coughs) that I’d be making her some chickweed tea once we got home. So what does my sassy mom do but share that with a nurse! Thankfully this nurse had gone through an alternative medicine course and was delighted! I’m glad to report Mom took our advice and recovered much faster than she would have otherwise.
I must confess to feeling like the lone ranger encouraging the use of chickweed tea for respiratory ailments for many years. It was very satisfying to be supported by a medical professional. It was even more satisfying to see an article about chickweed in the current Mother Earth News! If you can get your hands on the Feb.March 2019 issue it’s got some great information.