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Farm Update: Tuesday, September 8

September 8, 2009

(The first of our farm updates, written by student Farm Managers on our open workdays, here with sophomore Laura Blake.)

Today we used the four-row seeder to sow the week’s salad greens. After passing over the empty beds with the flame-weeder (a Ghostbusters-style backpack propane tank with a long metal pipe that shoots flame from the end) in order to toast any weed seeds beneath the soil’s surface, Brian and Sam took turns wheeling the seeder over the prepped beds. We sowed arugula, three varieties of mustard (golden frill, ruby streaks, and garnet giant), and a green oakleaf lettuce. Check out the lower terrace in a week or so to see the seed leaves coming up.

We then headed up to the middle terrace, shovels and rakes in hand, to prep the beds where potatoes were harvested last Friday. Potatoes grow up to a foots or so beneath the surface, so harvesting them requires deep digging. Friday left us with pounds of blue, white and russet potatoes as well as with three empty
beds that resembled a small-scale model of the alps. So we marked the perimeters of the beds with string, shoveled out the paths, cultivated the soil in the beds, and smoothed over the surface of each bed with a grating rake. The beds look beautiful and are ready to be planted on a coming workday.

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