Monday, August 31, 2009

Globe & Mail and Well Preserved......

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/toronto/attack-of-the-killer-of-tomatoes/article1257864/

Forgot all about this article from last week or so. (Busy with my mother in laws 65th Birthday celebration! Big farm pig roast!!). Cut and paste the above link to your browser (sorry, having a 'linking blog issue')to view a short article regarding the 'death' of our field tomatoes in the Globe & Mail....

Also a mention to a great couple Joel & Dana from 'Well Preserved' (wellpreserved.ca) wrote a nice article about us at: http://wellpreserved.ca/2009/08/16/a-sad-day-at-the-market/ that is a great read and ALSO the PICTURES ARE AWESOME!!! Those are my babies!!! LOLOLOL!!! I think I have separation anxiety sometimes with these tomatoes, especially during this year when I have soo little!! LOLOLOL!! These folks were generous enough to lend me a wonderful huge hardcover book all about heirloom tomatoes.....

Fall Greenhouse Plantings....






OMG this feels sooo awesome! I got my seeder out and seeded some trays of lettuce and asian greens!!!! YEAH!!! It is surreal to be working in the middle greenhouse traditionally used for early spring seeding. August used to show nothing but hotter than hell, very weedy greenhouses at Sosnicki Organics. No more. We are putting them to work year round from now on!! We've been trying our hardest to maintain them and with all the overcast and rain and cool temps this year - we've been able to work under that glass with ease this season. We are working away with our small planting of tomatoes in house #3. Pictures #1, #2, #3 & #4 have all been taken in our 3rd greenhouse. The back part of the house is completely empty - hence where all our lettuce and asian green transplants will call home in a while. (This WOULD have been full of tomatoes IF I would have known all my fields were to DIE this year!!) We hope to offer these crops to the market after fall frost when fresh greens are scarce and missed by all, so I'll still be able to reap a few rewards before years end.. The last pic is of greenhouse #2. The entire house wears a ground cover and tables and is used for seedlings and plants. We will probably be taking apart the back half, tilling and ammending the soil to make room for more 'covered field' plantings! Greenhouse #1 still needs alot of attention, but will act as a covered field as well within the next year. The heirloom tomatoes in house #3 are thriving EVEN despite the fact we encountered a bit of blight and bugs in there too!!! Any piece of broken glass that allowed a trickle of water to fall on a small section of plants constantly this season were riddled with blight like the field fellows!! The others protected from overhead moisture have been fine. I included this picture of Ben suckering a few plants - they are very, very tall now and are draping over the top bar! I needed a step ladder to pic a few cherry tomatoes yesterday! I love it!! More to come, as our greenhouses are assets we intend to use to their full capacity from now on....

Fall Crops Update...........






























What a year! With the cool temperatures and all the rain, it didn't even seem like summer arrived! I think it was the fact that I had no field tomatoes that still throws me for a loop at least weekly. With September arriving tomorrow, it is time to discuss our fall crops. All is looking pretty good I must say! Financially we are taking a hit by not being able to provide sweet corn, melons and tomatoes, BUT since we grow a diverse group of crops, the others will pull us through!! Currently we are offering some neat looking new varieties of zucchini at market - "Key Largos" & "Patty-Pan". Also fresh dug spuds, cabbages, onions, beets galore, peppers, herbs, swiss chard, carrots, greenhouse heirlooms, fresh cut cabbages & tons of onions and I'm probably forgetting a few items...We have more green beans and broccoli beginning shortly. We will also have a fine selection of squash and pie pumpkins! My stepdaughter and I planted these by hand in July (purposely skipping planting on the crappy sandy knoll) so we have big, beautiful plants producing some nice looking fall pumpkins and squash! In picture #5 here you can see our gorgeous celery! Beside it is root celery (celariac - great to boil and mash with potatoes! Or dice and roast!) and in the distance leeks, brussel spouts (I'll blog about these cool little guys once they get bigger!) and a whole ton of cabbage (pics #1 & #2). I took this pics last Thursday and today as FINALLY we were able to weed and cultivate! Some fields were nasty with weeds and too embarassing to take photos of! Trust me, our organic farm get messy too, I'm just selective with my photography!! LOLOLOL!!! (for example take a look at pic # 4. To the far right of that photograph IS home to basil...can you see the basil? I can't hardly FIND it nevermind!!! Weeds are growing fast as hell this year....) It is sometimes very hard to keep up, but we always try our hardest, as I don't need these buggers producing more and more seed......Anyhow, the fall harvest looks plentiful! I'll blog about baby beets and carrots shortly....BTW, summer is hardly over - just beginning in my books...

Monday, August 10, 2009

Seasonal Food for your health........






Last Friday I was on a high. Ben was feeling the same way and asked for another cup of 'juice'. Usually Fridays are met with lack luster feelings. We have a big day harvesting and have to go to bed early to be up and going by 3am Saturday for markets. - It's nice to have discovered a way to feel 'better' about our work schedule! Over the past few years we've made lifestyle changes. ****Quit smoking the big one! Ben: October 2003 & Jess November 2007!!**** (I held onto the world's dumbest comfort crutch for way too long after Ben!!) Now, the introduction to juices made from our organic vegetables is a welcome addition! A bit of work, but worth every second! We are making an effort to offer vegetables for 'juicing' as affordable as possible at markets. We know how much it takes to juice a few cups! There are tons of websites out here regarding juicing. I don't need to re-cap. Just google it and a wealth of information is right there. Ben and I feel particularly good after a couple daily servings of carrot, cuc and a tiny bit of beet. (Watch it with beets! Very powerful! My mother in law drank way too much one time last year and had a racing heart!!) You feel awesome: more energy, softer skin, elevated mood and mindset. Kera, our awesome market helper this year said (0nce she learned I'd been juicing and felt great) "I can just see you and Ben becoming vegetarians and doing yoga in the fields!!!".......hmmm, not right now for us. You are what you eat, ALWAYS take care of the insides! But, just remember to 'juice' in moderation as this high concentration of vitamins should not be messed with by going overboard....
Cucumbers! It is cucumber season around here! The cuc beetles are not too bothersome and so far no disease in our patch! WOW is all I can say! We should continue to have an abundance of great cucs at market this week! These cucs we sell are PERFECT FOR SALAD! People are always asking me at market: "Are these eating cucumbers??" I always laughed at hearing this and came up with many different answers for THAT question I usually kept to myself. What they always meant was "are they just for 'pickling'?". My answer is always NO. I think that these cucs (ones grown for dill pickling) are the BEST for salad and fresh eating! The flavour is awesome and they have tiny edible seeds the long English type do not. Peel, slice thinly, mix with sour cream a bit of sugar and cracked black pepper - WOW! Kids love! BUT you can also make your dills too! Again, google. I cannot give my mother's recipe away! I can tell you it is not brain surgery and is not hard! Just like cabbage rolls, it's the prep work that takes the longest! Basics: Water, vinegar, sugar, pickling salt, LOTS of garlic and LOTS of dill....that's all I'm saying...I might want to pickle for money one day!! LOLOLOLOL!!