Well, we’re farmers now!

Friday saw our first true day in the field – since Saturday was projected to be (and ended up being) a total washout, we headed over to Dracut and arrived at around 3:30 (thanks to an accident we passed on the way that cost us about 15 minutes).

After setting up the peas and microgreens in the hoophouse, we surveyed the two locations we could choose from, and decided to set up shop in the “back” field. We found a small patch of un-soaked soil – not an easy thing to find at this point, which remains fairly annoying – and rolled the BCS out of the shed and down to the field. The training we had received on it proved successful.

If I look stressed and sweaty, that's because I was both.

The picture to the left was taken when I had 50 feet of plowing under my belt. I did another 150 feet after this – back 50, and then a second back and forth to build up the raised bed we were constructing. The end result? I’d say it was a success, but time will tell.

We planted twenty feet of carrots (forty row feet, two rows) and twenty-eight feet of beets (fifty-six row feet, two rows) in fairly short order, although we were unable to use the automatic seeder. That wasn’t so much a problem with the beet seeds, but carrot seeds are pretty tiny. Not microgreen-tiny, but still pretty small.

Buryin' Seeds

Overall, a very successful first day in the field. Hoping that the weather, and, thus, the rest of the land, dries out over the coming couple of weeks so we can get more stuff in the ground.

I'd want to grow in that...wouldn't you?

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Peas & Greens

It took all of about 24 hour for the peas to spring up – the benefit of soaking them ahead of time. By Thursday, it became pretty obvious that the trays needed to be put outside – they were looking very healthy, and, frankly, making our kitchen remarkably stinky.

A VERY close look at the peas.

The microgreens also made an appearance by Wednesday. This picture makes them seem bigger than they actually are – micro is indeed an apt description.

They really are micro. I used a zoom lens.

The weather forecast for Friday looked good, so the plan was to head over to Dracut on Friday afternoon, bring the trays of peas and microgreens to the hoophouse, and see if we could plant something in the ground.

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Plantin’ Peas

Typical New England “spring” weather in recent years? No spring at all. We’ve often jumped right from winter to fall. This year, however, we seem to be having an actual spring season – days vacillating between 65 and sunny and 48 and rainy. What do you do when you don’t know what the weather will bring? Plant stuff in the garage!

We’re still hoping to get out to the field on Friday, but Monday night was spent planting peas in the hope of producing some nice pea tendrils. Johnny’s provided a nice set of instructions to follow – involving soaking the peas and plopping them on top of (and then under) some organic mix. Best part? They don’t need to be under the lights to grow.

Dropping peas

Checking them out Tuesday night, we can already see shoots – these guys are fast growers, which is pretty much the idea.

We also planted two trays of microgreens, which use the smallest seeds I’ve ever seen. They are about the size of the period at the end of this sentence, which makes it really difficult to follow instructions that say not to place individual seeds too close together. (Fortunately, the more graceful of the two of us was up to that challenge.) They do require lights, so we’ve got the trays under them right now. Hope to see some signs of life out of those guys in the next few days.

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Welcome!

Welcome to the brand new Idle Hour Farm site. Thanks for visiting. As you can see, we’re still setting up shop here (and getting used to the wonders of WordPress), so please check back in a day or two (and frequently thereafter). Thanks!

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