Thursday, September 1, 2016

Bonding and Bugs

Market List; Lamb Bratwurst- 3 Varieties; Garlic Butter, Rosemary and Thyme and Regular.
Lamb Chops, Steaks and Kabob Meat.
         Green Apple, Pickling and Lemon Cucumbers, Rainbow Cherry Mix Tomatoes,
             Egyptian Walking Onions. Red Burgundy Heirloom Okra and Tomatillos.

So Rayven's second stay is drawing to a close. This week she has spent a lot of time top dressing tomatoes and peppers with aged compost from the barn. Here in this photo she is planting Red Russian and Dinosaur kale, pulling out weeds and spent plants from some greenhouse beds.

We have been having trouble in the High Tunnel with Thrips this summer and if I am honest, part of last summer. They suck the life out of certain plants, especially cucumbers and leave little yellow spots on tomatoes. Plus when you are working in the cucumbers, the little devils crawl down your shirt. As you all know, Sunflower Savannah is committed to higher than the Organic standard of growing. Being Certified Naturally Grown, we never use any chemicals, either for growing or Pest Control. Most of our insect monitoring is done by hand picking or sometimes Biological controls and/or Beneficial Insects. This particular beneficial insect; Ambylseius Cucumeris which came airmail from California this morning is a Thrip eating monster or should I say "Mite". At sunset today, we went out and distributed these predatory mites in the 3 areas that we are growing cucumbers. This is mainly what they are attacking. As fast as they begin producing, the Thrips move in and literally the vines shrivel up to nothing. Fifty thousand mites are supposedly in this canister. However, it's a bit like the "Emperor's Clothes". I mean, in this case and in the case of some nematodes that I once ordered, you can't see the bugs at all. These were in some granules that you shake out. The nemotodes were in a sponge that you wet and wrung out into a bucket of water which you then dispersed into the soil. Hopefully they will get busy eating and save the cucumbers which are seriously suffering.
So this weekend is Labor Day. We have plenty of lamb for your grill. Pick up some Salsa or pickles or some cucumbers to make your own. We have been making them with those Green Apple cucumbers and they are A- MAZING.
Markedly cooler this weekend but no chance of rain for a change. Come and stock up for your BBQ or party.

God's blessings on you and yours,


Sam and Bill and Rayven who's flying out again,

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