Aug 1, 2009
Green Croft Gardens News
Whats happening on the Farm?
It has been quite a while since the last newsletter in May and every time I attempt to write the newsletter something in our busy life will call me away from the computer. Now it is 5.30 am and I will try to tell you a bit about our farm life in the summer.
Our gardens are producing lots compared to last year and everything is catching up after a late start. We had lots of lettuce and are starting to harvest the 4th crop, beans are in full swing with the bush beans starting and now the pole beans are catching up and ready to be picked soon too.
Raspberries are ripening and will be harvested till the end of October or the first hard frost. Pickling cukes are producing now but we just have not quite enough dill, the first seeding did not germinate well and after the weeds took over it got tilled under. The new seeding is not quite big enough to harvest. Timing is everything,
No more wwoofers
For June we had no wwoofers lined up ( Stefanie and Marissa did not come back) and we got a bit worried about help because even our great help Diane hurt her back and had to take time off, but then it always works out. Our neighbor, Binky, came over asking for work. Donna and Binky are still helping with weeding.
Then we got help from nieces Rebeka and Amelia and Simons girlfriend Taylor comes twice a week to help prepare for markets.
Philip and his friend Thomas helped a lot. We have Simons helping after he got laid off at Rapid Span since they did not get the contracts for building two bridges. Simon is looking for a job welding with a certified welder so he can get the hours together to be able to get his next welding ticket.
Beginning of July we did get another wwoofer, Mizuki from Japan, and after the first culture shock she is warming up to the crazy life on the farm and a house full of people. She has conquered her fear of worms and garlic and is healing up from massive attacks of mosquitoes ( they always go for the new blood), she even went swimming in the river and it was fun.
We will loose our long time renter Darcy who just got married to our friend Helga. They are moving into a bigger space and we wish them all the best for the future. Darcy helped lots on the farm building fences, cutting weeds and burdocks, pruning our raspberries, cleaning up and having lots of fun with our boys. We will all miss you and your drumming!
Coyotes and our last lambs
Beginning of July we had great plans to let our sheep graze and do weed control in our park. The park is about 5 acres of our property right along the Shuswap River and burdocks are a problem. We had the sheep only 3 days in the park and lost our two smallest lambs to the coyotes so we had to bring them back to the house pasture. Too bad it is back to cutting burdocks ourselves.
Philip and Thomas counted 15 coyote pups the other day while going through the park to go swimming in the river. We also lost 3 turkeys and a goose to the coyotes.
On July 22 our guard sheep Muffi gave birth to two beautiful ewe lambs one brown one white. She got bred very late because she was too busy standing on guard in the fall. Our muscovey duck hatched 8 ducklings and they all went to Binky and her border collies so they have something to herd and so the ducklings will be save from the ravens. The other ducks are sitting on explosive eggs. somehow they are all not fertile eggs. The goose and the turkey hen (the only one left) were also sitting for a very long time with no success.
Wool and Felting Workshop August 15th 10.30 2.30
This is a workshop to learn about wool and what you can do with it and it includes hands- on felting.
Watch the sheep get shorn, sort some wool, try some spinning and make felt.ed wool.
Pre-register by August 11th, call Gabriele 250-838-6581 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Cost $ 20 per person, includes wool to make felt, bring your own lunch and water.
Planting seed savers garden
I got to plant a seed savers garden at last this year and it is amazing how great it looks and how fast everything grew in just 2 months. I planted it right by our packing shed so it is visible and we can enjoy the flowers I planted. It is all fenced in an I am saving seeds of two kinds of peas, five kinds of beans, five kinds of tomatoes, onions, herbs, broom corn and many flowers.
Vernon Market has started
The Evening Farmers Market has moved to the north parking lot by Sport Check and it has been quite slow in the beginning. The last two markets have been better and many of my customers are coming back. Hope to see many of you there.
The Grindrod Market has been a real community builder and fun to go to driving my horses down the road to the market. Sales have been slow and I think it will take a little while till we get more locals coming. I will skip a few markets to do my wool workshop and other catch up work, maybe I will even get my house cleaned up.
We are excited to farm some more great land in our neighborhood. We are leasing a nice piece of land from Grace and Roy Hartwig and we are sharing a piece of land with our friends Heino and Manuela to the south of their property. This year it is all in green manures and next year one third of our gardens will get a well earned rest with summer fallow and green manures.
Produce for Sale
Pickling cukes, beans, potatoes, rainbow carrots, red Italian salad onions, garlic, kohlrabi, chard, kale, cabbage, many different lettuce, patti pan zucchini, green zucchini, basil, mint, fennel, heritage tomatoes, beets, raspberries,
Recipe of the Month
You need 1 lb of pickling cukes per quart jar.
7 lbs pickling cucumbers
4 cups vinegar (apple cider or white vinegar)
8 cups water
1/3 cup salt (coarse salt, real salt or sea salt)
7 pieces of garlic
7 sprigs of dill and grape leaves
sterilize clean jars in the oven at 325
make brine, combine water vinegar and salt and bring to a rolling boil,.
Fill jars with garlic, dill, grape leave and then add cucumbers and add more dill on top.
pour boiling brine over pickles and seal with sterilized (boiled in water) lids. Make sure everything is sterilized and gets sealed quickly!
I never do this step but to be really safe you can process your jars in a hot water canner after the water is boiling for 10 min.
When cool check if jars are sealed. Let rest for 2-4 weeks and enjoy your homemade pickles all year.
Grate yellow and green zucchini, chop up 1/2 cup cilantro, parsley or basil, add juice of one lime and one lemon add 2 tbsp of olive oil and add salt and pepper to taste. This is a great salad for hot summer days.
Three Colour Bean Salad
Slice one bunch of red Italian salad onions into rings (keep greens to use like green onions), boil onions in 1/2 cup red wine vinegar with 1 tsp sugar and 1/2 tsp salt for 2 min, let cool,
cut green and yellow beans in bite size pieces and steam till tender
Mix onions, brine and beans, add some olive oil and salt and pepper to taste serve salad after it has cooled down.
Icelandic Lamb skins
We got our beautiful and soft lambskins tanned and are selling them for $ 120 each.
You can choose from colours white, black and brown.
We are offering
Beautiful Icelandic raw fleece from our summer shearing in multi colours $ 25 per fleece
Wool bats for spinning, felting $2 per oz
Roving for easy spinning, hooking and felting $2 per oz
Hand spun wool in many colours for $4 - 5 per oz
Handmade cozy slippers, hats and scarves.
Where are we selling this Month?
We will be selling at the:
Kingfisher Market all of August 11am-1pm
Enderby Market every Friday 8 am- 1 pm`
Grindrod Days, August 8th , Grindrod Park Market 9 am 3 pm
Kelowna Farmers Market every Wednesday and Saturday 8 1pm
You can also come to buy at the farm call or email to make an appointment email@example.com
Check out our website www.greencroftgardens.com
August 8 and 9, Grindrod Park
Pancake breakfast 8 am (both days) Concession all day
Kids games at 10 am, lawn mower races, model train rides, tractor and car show, talent show, face painting, cake walk, silent auction, petting zoo -meet Jenny the sheep and Lucy the donkey, vendors, clown show.
Music by the River, SATURDAY at 7pm enjoy the band OLD MANS BEARD.
EQUESTRIAN VAULTING DEMO by the Sundance Vaulters
Sunday, Mutt Show at 10.30 show what your dog can do!
Come and join the fun
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