From Field to Market

We are in full swing of market harvest. We are doing four farmers markets each week:

Tuesdays at the Ashland Armory, Thursdays at the Josephine County Fairgrounds Farmers Market, and two Saturday markets – Downtown Medford and Downtown Grants Pass.

Plus we are very excited to be starting our CSA this Monday, June 3rd. We will be dropping off the boxes outside Del Rio’s Tasting Room at 4:00pm. If anyone is interested, we still have space available. Call or email us for more information.

We are in full swing of market harvest. Here, Anna is harvesting the lettuce mix while Jeff works on the

Every week there is more and more to harvest. We’re lovin it! Here, Anna and Jeff are harvesting lettuce and braising mix for one of their farmers markets

A beautiful broccoli raab bouquet

A beautiful broccoli raab bouquet

Radish and turnip bundles

Radish and turnip bundles

Anna's mom came to visit for a few days and of course, helped out on the farm. She was so excited about harvesting. We had to cut her off from pulling too many vegetables

Anna’s mom came to visit for a few days and kindly helped out on the farm. She was so excited about harvesting, she didn’t want to stop. It was pretty awesome!

Saturday Growers and Crafters Market!

We now need three tables to hold all our produce at markets

One of our customers couldn't wait to get home to eat her radishes.

One of our customers couldn’t wait to get home to eat her radishes. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There was an amazing turnout for the March against Monsanto on May 25th.

There was an amazing turnout for the March Against Monsanto. About 1,000 people turned out to protest the use of GMO food. We were lucky enough to be vending at the Downtown Medford Market when they marched through.

 

Our 100% home-grown heart beat salad.

Our 100% home-grown heart beat salad

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Potatoes are getting mounded

Potatoes are getting mounded

 

We are already seeing zucchini growing in the hoop house!

We are already seeing zucchini growing in the hoop house!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We had to cover all our tomatoes, cucumbers, and squash when we had that week of cold rainy weather.....

We had to cover all our tomatoes, cucumbers, and squash when we had that week of cold, rainy weather. It was a lot of work, we were soaking wet, and freezing…. 

but then we got to see the most beautiful double rainbow. And it was all worth it

but then we got to see the most beautiful double rainbow. And it was all worth it

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A Growth Spurt

The onions that we planted in October are really taking off. Look at those bulbs!

The onions that we planted in October are really taking off. Look at those bulbs

It's so wonderful to see the sugar snap peas flowering.

It’s so wonderful to see the sugar snap peas flowering! It means we’ll be eating peas real soon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The potatoes that we planted the end of April have

The potato spuds that we planted the end of April have already started bushing

Green beans!

The green beans too!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Carrot harvest! These two lovely carrots

Carrot harvest! You never know what kind of carrot art you’re going to find when you dig them up

Our neighbors, Kianna and Tayla, munching on our sweet carrots like little rabbits

Our neighbors, Kianna and Taylah, love to munch on our  carrots like little bunny rabbits

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last Saturday was the first Downtown Medford Growers and Crafters Market. It was a great turn out!

Saturday was the first Downtown Medford Growers and Crafters Market. It was a great turn out, we had so much fun! 

We went to Del Rio's Mother Day Celebration on Sunday to promote the CSA and discovered

Sunday we celebrated Mothers Day at Del Rio Vineyards and discovered this beautiful sign in their tasting room. Love it!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mowing the hay! People have told us that this year was one of the earliest hay harvests ever

Mowing the hay! People have told us that this year was one of the earliest hay harvests ever

Baling the hay

After mowing the hay and letting it sit for a day to dry, Jeff raked it all into windrows, let it sit for another day to fully dry out, and then baled it as demonstrated in the picture above

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A view of the bales

Lots of hay. And lots of bales to be moved.

 

We stacked the hay bales on pallets so that it could be easily moved with the tractor

We stacked the hay bales on pallets so that it could be easily moved with the tractor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here Jared and Jeff are stacking the hay so we can cover it with a tarp when it rains

Jared and Jeff are unloading the hay bales so that we can cover it with a tarp when it rains

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Things were a bit crazier than usual this week. On top of all of our regular farm tasks, we had to mow, rake, bale, and stack the hay before the dooming forecast of rain came. It was a lot to take on but man o man,  it felt so good to get it all done. We definitely could not have done it without friends….thanks to Ian, Holly, Jared, and Luis for all their amazing help.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The joys of planting and harvesting

One of the greatest parts of farming is living in rhythm with the natural world. We wake with the sunrise and work ’til the sunset. Often times we are so busy with one project or another we don’t even realize it’s 7:00 or 8:00 pm because it’s so light out. But just like the plants, we get energized from the sun. Well, caffeine helps too 🙂

Big onion plant out! First we loosen their roots, pull them out of the box one by one, and then give them a little hair cut to the roots and shoots because it encourages new growth

Big onion plant out! We start by loosening their roots, pulling them out of the box one by one, and then giving them a little root/hair cut to encourage new growth

Jeff and Kyle are planting onions, trying make sure the roots point down

Jeff and Kyle planted the onions while Anna got them ready. We ended up planting five different varieties plus leeks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

12 boxes and 5,000 onion plants later, we are done!

12 boxes and 5,000 onion plants later, we are done!

We like to see these guys! And we have lots of them! They always come out after we irrigate with the sprinklers

These worms are always fun to see. And we have lots of them! They always come out after we irrigate the fields.

Jeff is doing a trial with a few different varieties of hops. Kyle helped him build the trellis

Jeff is doing a trial with a few different varieties of hops. Kyle helped him build the huge 15-foot tall trellis

The little hops are planted and so ready to climb up that trellis

Then planted the hops that we started in the greenhouse. They’ll be climbing up the trellis in no time

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We finally planted in the hoop house! Anna is planting zucchini and cucumber plants. We also planted tomatoes and soon will plant peppers, basil, and eggplant

We finally planted in the hoop house! Anna is planting zucchini in this picture. But we also planted tomatoes and cucumbers and soon will be planting peppers, basil, and eggplant

We are in our second week of harvesting our produce for the Josephine County Fairgrounds Farmers Market. It feels so good. Here, Jeff is picking spring onions.

We are in our second week of the Josephine County Fairgrounds Farmers Market. It feels so good to be harvesting. Here, Jeff is picking spring onions for the first time

Our turnips seem to be very popular at the market. Here they are getting washed to go to market.

And here are some turnips getting washed and prepped to go to market. These seem to be everyones favorite…..they’re so sweet and juicy, it’s hard to resist

Our first strawberry harvest! We got 4 pints

Yup. That’s right ladies and gentlemen. We have begun harvesting the strawberries!

All about irrigation

The days here are rapidly getting warmer and the plants are soaking up all the water they can get. That means we’re spending a lot of time irrigating…turning on the pump, moving irrigation lines, assembling new irrigation lines, and checking moisture levels. Below is a brief explanation of all the different types of irrigation systems we use on the farm.

The pump in action

It all starts with the pump. This roaring beast pumps water straight from the Rogue River, up a hill, under the railroad tracks, and then all over the property

One way that we irrigate our crops

These are our homemade sprinkler lines. Although they don’t reach very far, they water everything very evenly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strong man Jeff is organizing and laying out all the hand lines

Strong man Jeff is organizing and laying out some of the hand lines

Aluminum hand line sprinklers

The aluminum hand line sprinklers at work

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Drip tape

We have found that certain crops do well with a drip irrigation rather than overhead sprinklers. We use whats called a drip tape, which has holes every four inches and allows water to drip at the base of the plant

Wheel line

These are the wheel lines that run hundreds of feet. We use them to water all the hay

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We did another big plant out. Filled 10 beds of lettuce, flowers, chard, broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage.

We did another big plant out. Filled 10 beds of lettuce, flowers, chard, broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage.

Potato plant out! We were lucky to have some friends come help us for the day....we got four different varieties in the ground

Potato plant out! We were lucky to have some friends come help us for the day….Thanks to Aurelien and Nina, we got four different varieties in the ground

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Some of the potatoes, like this All Blue variety, had some beautiful sprouts.

Some of the potatoes, like this All Blue variety, had some beautiful sprouts.

 

Here are the fingerling potatoes resting in their furrow, ready to be mounded.

Here are the fingerling potatoes resting in their furrow, ready to be mounded.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We Put the plastic on the end walls for the hoop house.

We finally attached the plastic on the end walls for the hoop house

And the rolling garage doors

And then fastened the rolling garage doors

Strawberries send out runners in the spring time

Strawberries send out runners to replant themselves and multiply. You can see in this picture two long, skinny, stem-like runners reaching towards the ground. We have been clipping the runners so that the plant’s energy is concentrated on the berry production rather than the plant reproduction

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When we are not working on irrigation projects, we are crazy busy maintaining the farm and building new infrastructure for the season.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Time for irrigation

More and more of these strawberries are forming....now they just have to turn red

More and more of these strawberries are forming….now they just have to turn red

Oh wait....some are turning red!

Oh wait….some are turning red!

We cover newly seeded or transplanted crops with this white fabric called Agro Bond. This is really beneficial to the plants because it still lets sunshine in, prevents insects from eating the leaves, traps moisture, and adds extra heat.

We have discovered that covering newly seeded and transplanted crops with this white fabric called Agribon is one of the best organic methods for pest prevention. While it allows light through, it prevents pesky insects from eating the new growth.

Holy Wind Storm! We had some really strong gusts of wind last week that blew up one of our Agro Bond pieces. We're still brainstorming on how to get it down from 50 feet in the tree

Holy Wind Storm! We had some really strong gusts of wind last week that blew pieces of our Agribon 50 feet into the air until it finally got tangled in a huge Oak tree. We’re still brainstorming on how to get it down.

One big project that we were able to tackle was getting plastic over the hoop house. Here Jeff, Kyle, and Christie are pulling the plastic over the top

One big project that we accomplished this week was getting plastic over the hoop house. Jeff, Kyle, Christie, and Anna are pulling the plastic over the top with rope.

Next, we attached the plastic onto the frame making sure it's nice and tight.

Next, we attached the plastic onto the frame making sure it’s nice and tight. We don’t want anything else blowing away in the wind.

Another huge project that we've been waiting to do is put the pump back into the river.

The water that irrigates our fields is pumped straight out of the Rogue River. Every winter, however, we remove the pump to prevent damaging and/or losing it from the high water levels. But now that it’s spring time, we need to put the pump back into the river. It was not the easiest task to get it down the steep hillside but Jeff maneuvered it like a pro.

Jeff had to go into the river to place the pump correctly.

Jeff had to go into the river to place the pump correctly. It was freezing!

another important project that's happening around the farm is thinning all the directly seeded crops like carrots, beets, and turnips. You can see in this picture a big clump of beets.

There are certain crops that we seed directly into the fields, like the root crops: beets, carrots, turnips, radishes. Often times, the seeds will be clustered too close together and unless they are thinned, will not grow properly. In this picture, you can see a cluster of beets that have not been thinned yet but was something Anna was going through very carefully.

Anna seeded the first succession of flowers: over 25 varieties! These are Calendula seeds

Anna seeded the first succession of flowers: over 20 varieties! In her hand are Calendula seeds. Aren’t they cool looking? Like little seahorses?

The busy bees are buzzing

We feel like little worker bees these days, moving from one project to the next. Many may think farming is monotonous but we have found it to be anything but that. Especially starting a business. There is always so much to do and not enough hours in the day, and never enough things crossed off the list. But we love it. We love teaching ourselves new skills, helping plants grow, and working outside with the rhythm of nature. We feel blessed to be living in such a beautiful place and to be growing food for our community.

Hope you enjoy this week’s photo journal.

Everyone, meet Kyle. Anna met him at an OSU extension farm class that she took over the winter. Kyle is starting his own farm operation but is helping us out until his operation gets under full swing.

Everyone, meet Kyle. He just moved to the Grants Pass area and is starting his own farm business. But until his operation is in full swing, he will be helping us out around the farm. So awesome!

Kyle and Jeff are figuring out how to construct the end walls for the hoop house

Kyle and Jeff are figuring out how to construct the end walls for the hoop house. Good thing they have the plumb bob

Lookin good! The end wall

And voila! There are the finished frames for the end walls. We’re getting closer and closer to planting our summer crops in there…

Seeding fennel....

Seeding fennel. This picture doesn’t do it justice but the seeds are beautiful, all silver and sparkly.

We just got our compost delivered this week. We have no idea how this truck was able to drive onto our fields

Our compost delivery has arrived! We still can’t believe that we got a truck this big into the middle of our fields. That was one amazing truck driver.

manure drop

A season’s worth of compost! It’s like black gold

Just for reference, the pile of compost is bigger than the Jeep. In front

The implement in front of the compost is called a manure spreader. We fill it with compost, hook it up to the tractor, and as it is being driven, spreads compost over the fields.

Jeff's mom, Carmie, has been in town for the past week and she has been a huge help weeding all the strawberries

Jeff’s mom, Carmie, has been in town for the past week and, lucky for us, has wanted to work on the farm. She has been a huge help weeding all the strawberry beds. Thanks Carmie!!

On your mark, get set, planting time!!!

On your mark, get set, planting time!!!

First, the seedlings get

Anna and Carmie are pulling the seedlings out of the trays and dropping them in the right place so that Jeff and Kyle can quickly and easily plant them

We planted broccoli, cauliflower, lettuce, bunching onions, kale, cabbage, and a beneficial flower mix for a total of 7 beds, each 150 feet long

We planted broccoli, cauliflower, lettuce, bunching onions, kale, cabbage, and a beneficial flower mix for a total of 7 beds, each 150 feet long. Hopefully they will all grow big and strong.

Jeff is mowing and tilling in another section of cover crop for another plant out in the end of April.

Jeff is mowing and tilling in another section of cover crop for our next plant out around the end of April.