Category Archives: planting

G-Hock and ADUB= REGULATORS…the Bros. Jones too!

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My hands hurt.  This morning I was determined to revamp the ol’ herb bed.  It had been neglected and the crab grass, real name escaping me from sun/ wind whipped brain.  Anywho, the grass, grew great, and was choking out my herbs, so Grace and I used  compost forks and dug the whole thing up and weeded it.  We removed all of the plants and replaced them when we were done.  I split her away from the other work that was being done in the hoop and beyond by the brothers Jones.  I told her, “This will only take us an hour or so.” No one should listen to a word I say…ever.  It took forever.  And the bed isn’t even that large, twenty feet or less.  While we were keeping it real up front, the bros. were in the back planting carrots and kale and laying drip tape.  Busy day, I felt so accomplished and to top it off (by midday), Paul made cilantro pesto for lunch!  He took it to another level folks by blending it with avocado and adding lime…HEAVEN IN THE MOUTH!!!!  Scroll down and get the recipe!  I posted it a few days ago.  The photo of Grace and I in all our glory is currently being held hostage on her cell phone, but here’s a pic of the bros. working their magic.

You’re welcome!

Things I Love, Things I Loathe

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I am quite satisfied with these flowers, these are a cactus variety of zinnia from Baker Creek Seed Co.  The package said “Giant”.  Not quite so sure about that, but the color is really nice.  We’ll put this into the “Love” category.

This too can be put into the “Love” category.  This, another cactus variety of zinnia, called “Bright Jewel Cactus”, seeds from Baker Creek Seed Co.  I’m in love with the color.  Anything orange attracts my eye, but when it’s a beautiful flower, even more so.  With this pack of seeds you get a few colors.  I’ve noticed a few white, a few yellow, some orange and pinks.  I’m satisfied with this mix of seed.  A beautiful mix of color.

This is the pink that comes mixed with the “Bright Jewel” packet.  It’s pretty, more of a salmon pink.

The award for “I love you, I love you, I love you!” goes to the “Righteous Red” zinnia from Seeds of Change.  These seeds had an excellent germination rate and produce hearty, vigorous plants.  The color was very chromatic, no complaints.  Absolutely stunning flowers.

I am also in love with my Celosia, seeds from Seeds of Change.  The germination rate was good and the plants are healthy.

Dum dun dun dun DUM!!!!  It’s that time to talk about the things that make me shudder and ultimately mean a swing and a miss on my part.  These pictures are of a zinnia variety called “Envy”, which is funny, because there is nothing to envy here.  I was so excited to buy these seeds, more than any of my others.  I bought them from Baker Creek Seed Co.  Zinnias should be direct seeded, but can be started in your green house, or indoors.  The risk of starting them early is to not let them get root bound, because they can suffer a transplant shock, which can send double blooms, (refer back to the picture of the Righteous Reds), to turn into singles, which you will see:

Hideous!  This is what the seed company advertised.  In fact, that’s even a terrible picture.  The picture in their catalogue was a lime green like this.  Not what I have here.

The single blooms are not pretty and they fall apart AND they look ugly a whole lot faster than they should.

I only have one plant that produces double blooms, but the color is far from what was advertised.  Let this serve as a warning to stay away from this variety of zinnia.  Notice the brown petals, this flower just bloomed!  Shouldn’t be brown.  Yuck “Envy” zinnia, just yuck.

Things I Love, Things I Loathe

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Bunnys, or deer nibbling off the top of my beans, grrrrrr.

If you want to grow ANY kind of squash in Northwest Arkansas, you have to fight the good fight with these guys, squash bugs.  Organically, there aren’t too many options for you…just don’t grow it.  I’m fighting for these babies here, I’m determined to keep them alive some how.  I don’t have many plants in the ground, so I’m scraping the eggs off of the leaves just to see if my plants can have a fighting chance.

The eggs and a newly hatched baby.

Another squash plant culprit, the stem borer.  Little white moths lay their eggs at the base of the plant and the baby bores into the stem and eats the inside of it, killing your plant.  This day I took a knife and split it open and yanked the grub out.  Fingers crossed the plants still make it.  I’m determined to get a crop.

Calendula and dill.  In case you were wondering, this is a picture of something I love.

Cosmos.  These are called seashell.  The produce this beautiful tubular petal.  I ordered the seeds on a whim, and am very pleased with them.

My sunflowers are my pride and joy!  I LOVE them as if they were my own children.

Except when the deer nibble off the tops!!!!  If anyone has any advice on dear deer solutions, I’m all ears!

 

Filler and Good Times

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Filler and Good Times

We have lost Annie, but gained Jake and Patrick, brothers from Springfield Missouri.   The brothers have been here a week now and are enjoying their time here on the farm.  They have a fun story, sorry guys but I’m going to tell it.  They both worked for Expedia, the travel web site.  They worked in the call center to help you book your trip.  Well, they both got fired on the same day and decided it was time to move on.  They said that their higher-ups did them a favor because they saw how unhappy they were.  So they started to travel themselves , instead of helping all of you book your vacations.  They also drastically changed their lifestyle choices, including their diets.  Jake was over 400 lbs.  Through good old eating right and exercise, he was able to drop over 160 lbs!  Talk about a monkey off your back!  I’m so inspired by their enthusiasm and will power and in turn they are inspired by ours.

Annie D’s last breakfast with the team.  We miss you already, happy trails.

(L-R) Jake, Patrick, since nicknamed the “Missouri Angels”.

The greatest job on the farm.

Picking tomatoes.

Oliver likes to hang out while people are working.  He makes sure this ship sails smoothly.

I’m glad he does, because we can get cute pictures of him doing super-cute things.

Paul put him to work picking green beans.

Jake displaying his tomato harvest.

We are currently selling produce through numerous avenues.  A few local grocery stores are the proud recipients of Ozark Alternatives potatoes, as well as a few local restaurants and of course the Fayetteville Farmer’s Market.  The tomatoes seen here were sold through our CSA, Northwest Arkansas Local Harvest.  We also have sold some through the Farmer’s Market.

How I spent my 30th birthday

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We started off by playing hookey from the Sunday farmer’s market, shhh.  It was very nice to not have to get up early and schlep everything in the truck and schlep it all back, but it did feel like I was skipping school and quite possibly was going to receive a call from the principal.  Paul did the honorable thing of making breakfast for all of the WWOOF’ers and the family, and we went to work on the farm (not me).  We shared lunch as well, and McKenna surprised me with a cake and candles, then she took off for Arizona.  THANK YOU MCKENNA!  And everyone else for keeping the secret cake in the fridge a secret.  After lunch Paul took the kids and I out to the “country” to visit Mark Cain who owns Dripping Springs Farm.  Talk about one of the kingpin growers in this area!  We had been invited out on several occasions, but those of you who glance in this blogs direction or share the same profession know that the farm never sleeps.  But it was a special occasion, so we went.  I wore my bathing suit, because I had heard of this epic swimming hole and I was ready to wash the 20’s out of my hair!  This farm is off the beaten path, traveling for mile on nothing but dirt roads, did I mention epic?  Mark was very nice, taking time to show us around and talk about all of his goings on, we’re such big farm nerds!  I feel like I didn’t take enough pictures, but I have some to share, I hope Mark doesn’t mind.

Isaac was asking if he could have a pepper.

Mark picked Isaac a ripe one, purple mmmmm.  I’m glad he did, because Isaac might have ripped half of the plant off.

Inside one of his hoop houses.

This is the outside of the structure.

A view from the inside corner.

 

Another hoop full of snapdragons!

Isaac kept thinking this whole process boring, and kept trying to drag me to the creek.  I wanted to go badly too, but I also wanted to finish the rest of the tour.  Don’t you realize where we are Isaac?  This is Dripping Springs!!!

Onions drying upstairs in his barn.

Garlic curing downstairs in the barn.

 

There are no pictures of the creek.  It didn’t occur to me to bring the camera, but for good reason.  The creek/swimming hole was magic, heaven on earth, see to BELIEVE!  So, you’ll just have to volunteer some time to gain access…and it’s totally worth it!

An exciting day of harvest

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On this day, the team harvested potatoes.  Shiori invited two of her friends from Fayetteville to come over and help, their names were L.J. and Hirona.  We also received McKenna, she came to us from Louisville Kentucky on her way west.  I can’t forget our newest recruits, David and Marine, coming all the way from Toulouse, France.

The team found snake eggs

Digging up more eggs.

After I told the boys that they had found snake eggs.

Everybody is interested now.

Roy giving everyone a lesson about snake eggs.

Hirona.

L.J.

McKenna.

David and Marine.

Action Packed Father’s Day in Washington County

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Action Packed Father’s Day in Washington County.  Here’s the link to our Father’s Day news spot.  The clip at 10pm was much better, they gave a shout out to Ozark Alternatives.  This must be the 5pm clip.

For Mr. Dale

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I was really pleased to know that a neighbor of a friend of mine reads my blog.  When I saw him recently the first thing to come out of his mouth was how I had a “buy local” sticker on my foreign automobile.  The second thing was “You need to update your blog, and with close-ups of all of your hot volunteers!”  I’ll try my best Dale, and for the record I think he meant hot, as in it’s hot outside and therefore they are hot…it’s just a guess.  Like I had said before, on day one of the CSA we received Nora and Will from Brooklyn.  Shiori and Keyohei were here as well.  A few days after Will and Nora’s arrival, Hayley also arrived from Albuquerque.

 

Kyohei and Nora in the hoop harvesting potatoes.

 

 

Part of the “Take” before being washed.

 

Everybody, this is Will.  He’s planting cucumber seeds.

 

Rose kicking butt as always.

 

A picture courtesy of Isaac.

 

sweatshirts?  Yes, remember I’m behind in posting all of these lovely pictures.  Nora ate as many peas as she picked, if not more.  You would too, they were AWESOME!

Crew cleaning onions while Oliver just watches.

 

Kyohei and Isaac cleaning radishes.

 

You want to know what I love about Jonathan?  He’s a thumbs-upper.  Those are my kinds of people.

 

Hayley keeping it real…and forgive me girl if I misspelled your name.

These were some great people and great volunteers.  Thank you Will and Nora for bringing Brooklyn to the farm, and to any future Brooklynites who are interested, BRING IT!

SUNDAY, SUNDAY, SUNDAY!!!

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Tomorrow we start the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks Farmer’s Market, weather permitting.  There is a high chance of rain, but not until 1pm or so…so “they” say.  All day today we have been doing chores getting ready for market.  I haven’t gone to this farmer’s market before, even as a patron, so I’m not sure what to expect.  I’m full of all sorts of apprehension, trying to drown it with a doughnut and blogging.

Onions and Leeks

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Wish us luck.

The Farmer’s Market Through Isaac’s Eyes

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Isaac decided to take pictures of the Farmer’s Market this morning.  Here are a few:

They’re fun.

Again, : )