Full and By Farm: Week-Long Work Party

Full and By Farm Weather Vane (Photo: virtualDavis)

I've been too scrunched for time on Thursday's to get many farm notes out this summer. But, we did want to let you all know that we have a week-long work party happening at the farm, starting right now. Construction of the new pole barn is the main project this week, with hopes of a standing structure by week's end. There's a contingent of out-of-towners from as far away as Texas and Indiana here for the party, but, in order to meet our goal, we could use all of the help we can get from local … [Read more...]

Full and By Farm: Cutting and Baling Hay

Combine at Full and By Farm (Credit: Sara Kurak)

We got one more hay field cut and baled this week. This round only got rained on one half inch. Our entire definition of what a hay window looks like has changed in the last couple of months. Generally you want to make sure there is no rain whatsoever in the forecast for at least three days—the amount of time it takes to cut and wait for the hay to dry down before baling it. After cutting we always tentatively watch the sky, looking for any signs that some passing shower might sneak up on you … [Read more...]

Full and By Farm: Up to Our Eyeballs

Full and By Farm, October 10, 2013 (Photo: virtualDavis)

It's been a few weeks since I've managed a note. We've been up to our eyeballs in weeds, fall transplanting and seeding, haymaking, and pasture moving, with little time to spare for writing. Luckily it's not just the weeds that have kicked into high gear lately. The heat, sun and little bursts of rain have moved the veggies along quickly too, many are still small for the date but are making up for lost time. It's like starting to feed a child who has been malnourished for ten years—there are … [Read more...]

Full and By Farm: More Rain This Week

Full and By Farm Bull Ray

I'm beginning to sound like a broken record, but more rain this week has been taking its toll on the vegetable fields and hay crop. We really need a solid week to dry out, and then a second week to get caught up on cultivating and to get a start on this year's haymaking. The kale plants look more like a groovy psychedelic painting than legitimate vegetables—the coloring smoothly transitioning from vibrant green, to mellow blueish purple into straight up magenta as the level of stress goes up in … [Read more...]

Full and By Farm: Rain and Then Some

Piglets at Full and By Farm, Spring 2015 (Credit: Sara Kurak)

Three and a half inches of rain answered our needs and then some. It also stopped us in our tracks during this busiest of planting times, postponing lots of seeding, transplanting and weed control till next week. It's still a boggy mess out there in the vegetable fields, the warm sun and wind that are coming our way should help out, I'm hoping the bits of rain here and there in the forecast pass us by for a short spell. The cold temps that came with the rain storm also laid the asparagus out. … [Read more...]

Full and By Farm: Grants, Greens, & Volunteers

Full and By Farm Weather Vane (Photo: virtualDavis)

We're still glowing from yesterday's news that we are going to receive a grant from New York State for construction of our new pole barn. We're one of 19 farms across the state to win funding (one of three great farms in the North Country). We can now move full-tilt into construction mode, fitting the work in around cows, vegetables and hay making, of course. Plans are to construct the bents over the course of the summer and have a big, old-fashioned barn raising in August. We'll let you know … [Read more...]

Full and By Farm: Three Season in Two Weeks

Full and By Farm Bull Ray

In the two weeks since I wrote the last farm note I feel like we have lived through three seasons. It's been a wacky start to the growing year—passing straight from the frozen soil of winter to the high eighties of summer and finally retreating to some springlike chilly nights and warm days. It's been confusing knowing what to plant, the early season favorites of spinach and peas don't tolerate hot weather real well. It seems we skipped right passed the cool weather ideal for seeding and growing … [Read more...]

Full and By Farm: Some Dry Days

Spotted Salamander (Credit: Sara Kurak)

It was a great week for getting caught up on outdoor work. The brisk wind dried the saturated soil out quickly and the long sunny days help raise the ground temperatures a bit—it's still surprisingly cold out there but at least it's plantable now. I'm doing a big push today and tomorrow to make ridges and seed all of the spring crops that are overdue. The spring greens that I transplanted last week thrived in their rainy, overcast first days and look great. We have a bit of time to wait, but … [Read more...]

Full and By Farm: Surprise Visitors

Heifers on Parade (Credit: Sara Kurak)

Our first real taste of spring this week, and everyone's spirits are riding high in the sunshine and warm temperatures. The spring that seemed to never be coming has firmly taken hold. We dug into the ground for the first time yesterday, discing in a meager cover crop that never really took hold in the fall. We're preparing land for a wee, little orchard of 35 apple trees. The vegetable field is waiting its turn now for harrowing and ridge making. The soil is still too cold for seeding, but the … [Read more...]

Full and By Farm: Great Sugaring

Night Time Boil (Credit: Sara Kurak)

We've had a run of perfectly warm days and cool nights—setting us up for great sugaring weather this past week. The evaporator has been burning late, night after night. Day after day we've had great runs and we need the bulk tank empty first thing in the morning for the trip up to the sugarbush to collect, and to get started boiling once again. We were planning for a collection this morning, and to boil during the share pick up tonight, but nature threw a big, sloppy, snowy, wet hurdle in. So, … [Read more...]