Rain or Shine: Trellises and Transplants Galore!

As I was biking to the Honey House Farm early yesterday morning, I looked behind me to the west to see my new seasonal buddy hanging over my shoulder – Large Dark Cloud Front. Knowing that our delayed planting season must go on, I quickened my RPMs ever-so-slightly. Pulling up to the gate, I see our apprentice Laura giving Emi (who recently returned from a family trip to Sweden) a peer-led tour of all the changes that have taken place at the Farm. I locked up my bike and went inside to put on my work overalls and shoes.

Our goals for the day were to build a few remaining beds in the northwest field, finish planting a row of chard, and set-up some trellises. Given that the soil was a bit damp, we decided to save the digging until later in the morning with hopes that it would dry a bit more.

Laura and Emi started by planting a polyculture row of annual edibles: leeks, petunias, and chard (orange and pink varieties). I was cultivating a couple of rows in our Greens Bed. No sooner had we started to work that my buddy Large Dark Cloud Front decided to tease us with some sprinkles. Especially this season, farmers can’t stop working because of a few small drops – so we kept planting. Quickly this turned into a down pour so we decided to stop and move inside to prevent soil structure damage and to save our smooth necks from growing gills.

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Kara planting Dragon carrots with radishes.

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Prepped beds with pathways – before it rained.

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Mary and Emi constructing a trellis out of bamboo and twine.

While we could have taken mid-morning naps, a farmer’s work is never done. If we aren’t in the field, we are preparing something for it. Laura and Emi cut trellis material in 12 ft sections.They also scarified our nasturtium seeds by filing them with a nail file so they would germinate more readily. While they did this, I went with Jesus and Ruben – our maintenance wizards – to pick-up weed-free hay for mulching our pathways and beds. We returned, unloaded it in the downpour – sopping, itching, and hay covered. Before Jesus left, he jokingly asked, “Shall we go back for more?” There is always tomorrow.

Kara and Martin duel with the donated plastic trellis - it worked great!

Kara and Martin duel with the donated plastic trellis – it worked great!

Tomorrow is today – a sunny and warm day! A perfect time  to transplant tomatoes, cucumbers, collards and peppers. Thanks to Martin and Kara, most of our trellising was put in place for indeterminate crops. Thanks to Emi and Mary, we started to direct seed our bush beans, beets, and radishes. And many thanks to a new volunteer from the Powderhorn neighborhood – Liliane – who planted a polyculture of tomatoes, collards, nasturtiums and dill, and assisted with trellising. We are almost half done with our planting at the Honey House Farm. Hopefully when we get the majority of things in the next week, we will have a planting celebration with a good sweet tea and some snacks. We hope you will join us!

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Laying out the transplants to see how the spacing will work in this semi-keyhole bed.

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Volunteer Liliane prepares the bed and plants collards, nasturtiums, and a few tomatoes.

Volunteer Liliane prepares the bed and plants collards, nasturtiums, and a few tomatoes.

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