Thursday, September 20, 2012

Sunflowers and Stuff

I took today off as I had some vacation time to burn off.  I thought I would head up to the farm and check things out as I hadn’t been there since last year. 

One new thing is that I learned is that Grandma has rented out some land to a Chinese restaurant owner.  A lady came by at the beginning of the season and set up her plot.  There are makeshift trellises using large sticks and there also irrigation gullies.  I'm fairly certain these are farming techniques she learned from her homeland.
The trellises, frankly, are ugly.  I thought it looked medieval and… evil.  Kudos for using all natural materials but the effort in setting these up compared to post and wires seems too much.  Also, I don’t see how this structure is going to last for next year.  Unlike post and wires, this mess is going to have to be cleaned up.  I dunno, maybe they last but I’ve never dealt with something like that.
The irrigation gullies are a good idea but really not necessary.  The plot being used is low and retains water.  You see those trees back there in the picture?  That’s where the pond is.
Here you can see my grandma securing transplanted collard greens by stepping on the soil by the base and compressing it.  It may seem crazy that these are getting planted now but these won’t be ready and sold until after the first frost.  When I was young, my grandparents didn’t even grow these as they are not sold on the farmers’ market.   Some of her customers that come out the farm to buy direct started to request them and now she grows quite a bit of them. 
Seriously, after all that planting and hoeing, to get only $2 a head for seeds that will probably sell for $20 seems a bit crappy.  And here’s the kicker: these were picked for money that will all be donated to the church.  “Good money” for whom, hmmm?

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