Friday, October 9, 2015

Vaya Con Dios Max

Finished Raised Beds -Thanks to Jeff and Max
Market List- Lamb, Beautiful Pesticide Free Apples- Lemon Cucumbers, Rainbow Cherry Tomatoes

Whew what a whirlwind week! Max finished the raised beds behind the greenhouse and his friend Tiffany planted them today. I was able to get some canning done, Pesticide free Apple Butter, Pickled Okra, Smoked Tomatillo Salsa. The grant trees were planted yesterday and I taught Max how to process a chicken and we managed to squeeze in some jug fishing today, Catfish for dinner tonight. Yum, nothing like providing your own food.
Still so much to do but sadly Max is leaving tomorrow after the work day is finished. We wish him luck on his endeavors.
He and Bill will be scrambling tomorrow to finish up the gutters on the barn roof and I don't know what all else as I will be preparing for market.

Here are some pics of the Slow Food Grant Trees that we finally pulled out of the High Tunnel. As I Blogged about before, we heeled the grant trees inside because I did not wish to take a chance on losing them during the dry Missouri Summer...what a joke as we were flooded until July. However, we were able to control the water input and they did beautifully. Also I was dithering around about where I wanted to put them. It came to me that I wanted to put them behind the high tunnel, where I can always make sure of their water and protection. Max and Bill cleaned out the spot to make it ready. This first tree is one of the Paw Paws. We put the Paw Paws near the end of the area where there is a little more shade. They are understory trees which means they grow under larger trees but they still need a lot of light. The trials done on Paw Paws in the last few years were done in full sun but every one I talked to who planted them in Full sun lost them, so my idea was to put them in a place which was nearer to their natural habitat but still in full sun. This shrubbery behind them provides too much protection for tomatoes but should mimic this.
Heirloom trees after 5 months

Newly arrived Heirloom Grant Trees
On the right are the Black Republican Cherries taken out of the high tunnel. They grew very well in there as did the rest of the trees. Remember, this is what they looked like when they arrived.

The Black Republican needs a separate pollinator.
I chose the Black Tartarian Cherry.
This is how much it grew since May. I had Max put his hand where the original height was when I heeled it in.

Tartarian Cherry

Part of the reason for our success besides the excellent job Bill did on the high tunnel was the Route 66 organic compost which was also paid for by the Slow Food Grant. The trees were heeled in using this compost which is aptly titled -Black Gold. Perhaps I should explain; Heeling in is a term in which you are basically storing plants until you can put them in their desired spot. So you cover the roots so they won't die and then you have time to get your spot the way you want it.

So after we removed the Trees from the High tunnel. Max got a lesson on tree planting. The holes were dug and then a thick layer of compost was put in and then regular garden soil was mixed with more compost to give aeration to the roots while also allowing the heavier soil to provide the stability to hold the tree in position.

Shipping turned out to be less than expected so I ordered another Heirloom Quince that is not the Meech's quince of which 5 will be here either in November or February. Still waiting for the grower to let me know when she is ready to let them go. They were actually grafted just for us this Spring.
The quince that came in this order is a Russian Quince and actually bloomed in the High Tunnel.

This bloom was about eye level for me which under 5 ft.

This is how it looked when we were ready to plant. Bill has his hand where the original tree height was, right below where the branches start. All in all, I was very pleased with the growth of these Slow Food trees, purchased from One Green World Nursery in Oregon. All this talk about Slow Food is making me hungry. Why don't we all meet at the Luminary on November 7th for a great meal provided by and St. Louis' best chef and have drink together from the areas best distilleries. What am I talking about you say, well all this grant money has to come from somewhere and every year, Slow Food hosts a benefit to raise money to encourage local farmers to grow disappearing food sources. This benefit is called the Art of Food. There will be raffles, auctions and great food and drink to heighten awareness of disappearing food sources and raise money for the grants. What is more fun than getting together with people who have similar interests such as local food, great cuisine and a having a sustainable drink together. Save the Date, November 7th 6-10 P.M. Great prizes include; A Locally and Cleanly raised Heirloom, Bourbon Red Turkey from Vesterbrook Farm, Chocolatier for a day from Kakao and other great items. There will be great auction items from donations by Tower grove Farmers market and Schlafly Farmers market vendors.
And SO, that wraps up the end of our Wwoof sage with Max as he moves on to his next adventure. Stay Safe Max and remember that Fine line between guts and stupidity. It's been fun.
Bill and I will see the rest of you at Tower Grove tomorrow from 8-12:30. Lots of Lamb and Mom and Uncle Jack and Sue used the tractor to get the Pesticide free apples off of the trees so there are some beautiful ones. Come and get them.
God's blessings on you and yours.
Sam and Bill and Max just for today

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