market season begins

Hello from here! Since the weekend, it's been relatively chilly and has felt somewhat muggy, which apparently cues the mosquito population. They are everywhere, in large numbers, and due to them I've slapped my own face at least 40 times since Sunday. 

We haven't received significant rainfall in over 2 weeks, and the soil shows it. We are feeling very fortunate, though, to have our irrigation capacity, which is keeping crops hydrated. There hasn't been a shortage of conversation around here about well problems and pest trouble, and again, we are super fortunate in that we are not dealing with these, at least beyond ordinary levels. (I'll describe how we set up our irrigation in a future post)

Nicholas and I worked our first farmers market ever on Saturday! We are at the Midtown Farmers Market, in Minneapolis less than 100 yards west of the Lake St - Midtown blue line station. We didn't have much produce to bring along, and we sold out of pretty much everything. Stinging nettles were the exception, but they still sold well! We only brought 6 half-pound bags back to the farm, and we've mostly consumed them and made delicious tea from them. 

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In the field, plants are growing faster (veggies and weeds) and we are almost done catching up with the soil preparation that's been delayed due to the inherited thick rye and occasional strong-rooted alfalfa that we are either broadforking or tarping. The good news about the latter is that it is working really well! After field areas are tarped for at least 2 weeks, most grasses are dead, soil is slightly less compacted, and earthworms are everywhere. Bed quality is much improved after tarping. 

Photos above are: left: weekly crop field photo; and right: effect of tarping on ground thick with rye, dandelion, and clover.

Thanks for reading!

-pppppp