It was a great week. We spent last weekend working on preparing for the rebuild and for the first year Culinary Students to come out and help.
Larry Cosgrave came out last Saturday to help pound all the rebar in. First we had to start with marking out where the tunnels where going to go. Jeff made a template for the rebar, so it was all measured the same. Olivia laid out all the rebar, and I (Carey) started to space it. The ground was nice and wet so I was able to slide each piece in over a foot on my own. That saved Jeff and Larry a lot of work.
We tried to have everything organized to help Tuesday, the big part of the rebuild go smoothly. We did a lot of measuring, and drilling in the cold, snow, rain and wind on Monday.
Our friends Kay and Vic also came to help out for the day.
We knew the rebuild would be starting when parts started to arrive.
The first year Culinary students came out to help with the rebuild. They were eager to help. We started the day with a tour of the farm. It was cold and windy but their spirits were high. We tried to keep everyone busy. Once we got everyone organized and working away things went fairly smooth.
We all enjoyed fresh muffins for a morning snack thanks to Hal Mills for providing/baking them for us. Hal also brought up some fresh cookies for us as well.
Students aren't wasting any time
By 2:30 I think we had all had enough. We realized we were short bolts (not sure how that happened). We had ordered enough, but were short 100 bolts all together, which would have been a box. I think we had all had enough of the cold and the wind at this point. It was also almost time for me to leave for veggie boxes.
We all took a nice long lunch and chatted and got to know each other better. Some of the students are staying on the Island for the summer to work at some local restaurants.
By the end of the day, we had the sides of 1 tunnel complete, a few finishing touched to the end walls and it would be ready for plastic, we will call it tunnel 2, since it is the middle tunnel.
The first tunnel has one side all the way done, and the other side about ¾ of the way done. The third tunnel needed all the hip board attached, which we had ran out of bolts for.
Plastic is on. Now to run electrical and inflate it
I think the day might have been more productive if the weather was better. Overall it was a great day. Enjoyable, and not near as stressful as I thought it was going to be. Thanks Chef Rob for bringing the students out.
On Saturday morning we managed to get the plastic on tunnel #2. It was a great day for doing it. Jeff then worked away on some of the other tunnel to get it ready for plastic. It looks like the winds may cooperate again for us on Wednesday or Thursday. We hope to get it done then, but also have our regular work we need to stay on top of.
The spring is always a busy time of year, and this has added a little extra work. So far we are balancing it very well.
We currently have a waiting list for veggie boxes too. This can be very frustrating for both us and the person waiting for the week we have a veggie box available for them. It isn’t that we do not want to be able to provide the veggie boxes, but lack of produce. Last year at this time we were harvesting our own cherry tomatoes and sugar snap peas were just about on. We also had more growing space. With the loss of the tunnels we lost just under 6000 sq feet of growing space. The late spring hasn’t helped us at all. With veggie boxes we want to be able to provide fresh greens to everyone and do not want to over commit. We are also going to start to run short on storage vegetables, if we don’t have more to offer soon. Saying that things are looking up. We have strawberries in bloom, and bok choi is looking great. It is just a matter of time, and things can change a lot from week to week.
Strawberries in bloom - only about 100 plants altogether
A few of the bok choi
We hope that spring is here to stay now, and we can get working the land (which is too wet) and get caught up on everything.
More of the rebuild and happenings on the farm coming soon.