Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Sunflowers & Sun Golds!

 The flowers are coming on full force and they are BEAUTIFUL! We have completed our flower bike trailer (a covered wagon/hoophouse attachment) and have been selling bouquets for the past 3 weeks and folks are quite excited about them. I have discovered that flowers are a rather time-consuming crop to harvest and therefore I'm oh so happy that we completed our walk-in cooler this week. No longer will I have to harvest flowers in the dark or cause myself unneeded stress about being late to market. This week we'll be able to harvest everything on Friday and keep it in the cooler overnight. I'm soooo excited!

The cherry tomatoes are also coming on strong and we're harvesting every day to keep up. Last saturday was the first large tomato harvest at market and they were definitely a favorite amongst our customers. The Sun Golds are just so tasty, they are certainly one of my favorite tomatoes. The yellow pear also sold very well, though I don't  think
 I'll grow this variety next season. The plants are very small, hardly 2 feet, and though they are producing decently, the plant itself doesn't seem very strong.  Plus, the large difference in size makes it a little awkward to string them alongside other varieties. The large heirloom tomatoes are very full with fruit and I've picked off a couple ripe tomatoes from a variety called Rutgers which is nearly pulling down the staking. The Green Cherokee (many Detroiters are familiar with Purple Cherokee, we'll see how this compares) is also producing well but no ripening fruit yet.

we are also happy to have the help of our neighbor Paul Weertz, though probably not the Paul Weertz you all may be familiar with.  This Paul Weertz is only 9 years-old and also known as "PJ" and Paul Weertz's grandson.  So PJ has been helping out a little on the farm, including prepping beds, hilling leeks and planting scallions.  This past Saturday was his first time at market and he really was a life saver.  It was just Jack and I at market which required a lot of babywearing for Jack while doing everything else, including getting all the produce/display to market and setting up, while i was away harvesting flowers.  thankfully PJ was able to assist Jack by weighting out tomato baskets and arugula bags and making change.  all very difficult tasks while wearing a VERY grabby 10-month old.  Thank you PJ!

The guys at work...one of the down sides of having a eastern stall at market, my photos always come out like this! oh and you can see our crazy flower transport covered wagon in the back round.

Last but not least, we had a very productive (though small) workday a couple Sundays ago.  My folks were back in town, so we had the benefit of a very happy grandma to babysit and an even happier grandpa to put to work.  With chainsaw in hand and a grin on his face, my pop cleared the whole side of the house!  Jack, myself and a few friends helped  move cut
i can't say that it looks good, but it looks better i guess :)
 branches and clear out parts of the felled tree.  we also cleared broken glass near the house and generally gave the back/side yard a little love.  Though these were important tasks in general I had specific desires to clean up the place in order to host a birthday party for myself (the bummer about getting old is having to do all the work for your birthday..oh well).

Oh and one last exciting bit of news, we'll be a featured stop on this year's DAN Garden Tour!  So if you are doing the Eastside tour this year, I'll see you tomorrow!

Finn LOVES the Sun Golds!