Wow, that was a quick month! October here we come.
The grasshopper population is still increasing and now they are chewing on just about everything. The last week we cleared quite a few of the weeds in the east terrace and thereby eliminated a lot of hopper habitat, so many of them moved to the squash and into the high tunnel. We should be able to get them under control this following week as we eliminate most of the rest of the weeds and use neem oil derivatives to slow down their reproduction and development.
Removing the weeds has also opened up beds for planting, so we have been applying compost, preparing the beds and doing some direct seeding. The spinach is in and yesterday I planted another bed of greens mix.
We had a few mornings in the 40s and one in the high 30s over the last week. These cool morning temperatures really slowed down the ripening of the tomatoes. In just a few weeks, the weekly harvest plummeted from about 400 pounds down to less than 100. There are still many green tomatoes on the vines, so we will have them for awhile. Once we get the new cover on the high tunnel, the tomatoes (along with the sweet peppers and chiles) will have a warmer environment in which to grow.
As we have been mentioning the last few weeks, we will be selling CSA shares for our fall & winter CSA season that will start on November 12 and continue until mid-March. The fall & winter CSA program is now about 1/3 subscribed. The forms will be available at the Sunday market, and in the CSA box on the right sidebar of this website,
It is a little chilly this morning, the temperature as I write this is 58 degrees. It is starting to feel like we are easing into fall; another summer is winding down.
The Rillito farmers’ market will be having a chile festival this weekend and we will be selling sinahuisa, jalapeño, poblano and Aleppo chiles.
As mentioned last week, we will be selling CSA shares for our fall & winter CSA season that will start on November 12 and continue until mid-March. The forms will be available at the Sunday market, and in the CSA box on the right sidebar of this website, and here.
We are slowly getting the weeds under control, with help from our volunteers John and Chris. Once the weeds are gone, the grasshopper plague should be more manageable.
We are harvesting a bumper crop of tomatoes, over 400 pounds per week. If you or any friends are interested in making and/or canning some tasty tomato sauce, please let us know and we will sell you tomatoes in bulk for a great price.
Our chile plants are now producing nicely. We have sinajuisa (similar to a serrano, but better flavor), jalapeños, poblanos and Aleppo. All of these will be at the market on Sunday.
Our late summer succession of summer squash is also cranking. We will have zucchini and patty pan at the market again starting this weekend.
We will be selling CSA shares for our fall & winter CSA season that will start on November 12 and continue until mid-March. The forms will be available at the Sunday market, and in the CSA box on the right sidebar of this website, and here.
We dug another row of Kennebec potatoes today. They will be in the CSA shares and available at the market.
Yesterday evening we planted hundreds of winter squash seeds. This is about 3 weeks late, but we will still be able to harvest them before the first frosts in November. We will be growing two varieties – butternut, of course, and Delicata. We have not grown Delicata before and we are looking forward to harvesting them. Our winter squash strategy this year is to grow both types. While the butternut are curing for a couple months we will be selling the Delicata, which are ready to eat as soon as they are harvested.
We also planted another round of summer squash – zucchini and two varieties of patty pan squash. We should be harvesting them in about 5 weeks from now.
Our jalapeños are ready to start harvesting. The first of the corno di toro Italian sweet peppers are just starting to turn red, so we will have the first ones at the market in a couple weeks or so.
The Suyo Long cucumber production has exploded; we are harvesting more than 60 pounds every other day now and it looks like this rate will increase! If you are interested in some for pickling, let us know and we will be happy to provide them in bulk at a lower price than we sell them for at the market.
Thank you for supporting local, organic, sustainable agriculture!
The monsoon has been good to us so far! We have received 2.56in of rain at the farm, most of it in 2 storms.
This is the year for rattlesnakes at the farm. We extracted two more from the purple bush bean bed in the last week. I hope there aren’t any more in that bed. It makes me nervous when I am picking beans.
With some help from some volunteers and our hardworking farmers we covered the high tunnel frame with shade cloth Thursday morning. Thank you Elizabeth, John, Dianne, Ian and Steve !! The plants in the high tunnel will be shaded and this should increase their production through the summer. It will be very hot over the next few days, so the shade cloth was installed just in time.
The summer squash are finally producing. We have 3 types of patty pan and classic zucchini plants cranking out the squash right now.
We’ll see you this Sunday at the market and Monday at our Green Valley/Sahuarita CSA drop off.