As you know we do winter production. It has been on hold for the past two months. We try and do veggie boxes throughout the winter without filling them with storage crops. We like to include fresh greens including arugula, bok choi, swiss chard, kale, mixed greens and also some eggs. We also have potatoes in storage and a limited number of beets and carrots. Greenhouse growing is a continuing learning curve.
I (Carey) spent Wednesday in Debert NS, at a greenhouse workshop for the day. I learned some new techniques and other options for season extension. Now to put things into practice. It was great networking with others as well to hear their challenges and success. What works for some people doesn’t always work for everyone. On Tuesday I also participated in a webinar for season extension. Some of our pictures and information were used during it, so I thought I would try and catch it. There were participants from across Canada and the United States.
January is a dark month with limited plant growth, so it is hard to have any veggie boxes. We went to Ontario to attend the Guelph Organic Conference to continue learning. Organic practices are changing all the time so we like to keep up to date. One of the most valuable things we can do is network and see what other farmers are doing. We also went on some farm tours. When we got back from Ontario we noticed the greenhouse was a little drier than normal, it probably should have been watered when we were gone which works against everything we have learned about greenhouse growing and also from our experience. Normally you wouldn’t water through the winter since it is cool and things are already grown. I think the mild winter was part of that. Things were still going be ok, just slowed us down a little.
We thought and hoped we could have the veggie boxes going again for the beginning of February. We went off Island to CYFF (Canadian Young Farmers Forum) for the weekend. We had left instructions for the greenhouse to get opened each day so that it didn’t get too warm within in and burn the plants. When we got back it was discovered that it was not opened while we were gone and some of the plants had some heat damage from the greenhouse reaching 39C.
With the days being longer, and the sun being warmer we need to open it up most days. It’s just a matter of time before we need to start rolling up the sides. We also need to make sure we keep the water to the greenhouse.
We are working on getting everything back up and going. We have some seedlings we will be planting out within the next week. We hope to have veggie boxes again soon. Thanks for you patience and understanding. We are at the mercy of the elements year round.