Spring Update

Hello everyone! So glad it is getting warmer, spring is finally here.

Here is what’s going on at DAY SPRING FARM.  Princess lollipop had her calf on Feb.21, a healthy bull. He is adorable, bouncing about in his outdoor calf pen and drooling on customers fingers.  We recently found out that two more of our cows, Fawn and Dolly are expecting calves l. Dolly in October, Fawn on Christmas day!  We will let you know when they are born.

Gardening, gardening, gardening! I think that is all we do now that it is warmer.  Peas are being planted in outdoor rows.  It is normally too cold outside to plant anything in the ground but since we have a plastic mulch layer, it warms the soil to the proper temperature for warmer weather loving crops. The proper temperature is about 60 degrees Fahrenheit.  Broccoli and kale are steadily being planted under row cover. TIP: If you don’t want to buy row cover (in my opinion it is well worth the buy) you could use bedclothes.  We have spread lime to raise the PH. of the soil as the PH.[of the soil] should be 7-7.5; chicken manure and fish meal to be followed by greensand and potassium to replace nutrients. We planted potatoes a week ago. We tilled a swath about 7 feet wide and 150 feet long and planted them, eyes up, every twelve inches with rows twelve inches apart.

We have tomatoes growing out our ears!  Roma, Striped German, Big Beef, Black Cherry, Clementines: you name it, we have it.  They were planted in the middle of March and will be planted outside on the first of May.  Cucumbers are planted in soil blocks.  Soil blocking is potting soil that is watered and then pressed firmly into a metal frame, then ejected.  The seed is then placed in a small indentation in the top of the soil block.  The advantages to soil blocks are that

  • it reduces the use of plastic.
  • it air prunes the roots when the root reaches the edge so the plant does not get root bound.
  • it is very good for transplanting cucurbits(squash,cucumbers,watermelons etc.) because they DO not like their roots disturbed

We are trying a new kind of cucumber this year.  The name of is West Indian Burr Gherkin.  I won’t write anything about them yet as I don’t have any experience with them yet.  But Pam Dawling who gardens 3 ½ acres in central VA has a wonderful article about them at a website she writes for. You can find it at: www.growingformarket.com.

Just recently a friend gave us a little garden cart that needed a face lift.  It was 36in wide and 48in long.I and my sister tore it down to the bare metal frame and rebuilt it.  We used reclaimed oak fence boards and a few 2×6 boards.  It is now 50in wide and 60in long and very sturdy.  We chose the dimensions so it would carry fifteen 1020 flats without any room to jostle around.  I have included a few pictures below.

dayspring_Wagon1dayspring_Wagon2 dayspring_Wagon3dayspring_Wagon4

 

Valentine’s Day

There is nothing cuter than a new kitten! Happy Valentine’s Day from Day Spring Farm!

Ladybug 160We are still awaiting our next calf, who is due to be born to Princess Lollipop sometime this month. She is having her vacation from giving milk and she can be seen in the front of the farm lounging with the horses. Hopefully she doesn’t get used to the lazy days with the horses and not want to head back to work with the dairy cows after her calf arrives. They work night and day making delicious milk no matter what the weather is. With our fodder production (green barley sprouts) they don’t drop in milk production the way the used to in cold weather. Even in the past few very cold days the udders are full and the milk still has lots of cream! What a Blessing.

The chickens on the other hand, though they are enjoying their fodder, are not laying very many eggs on these cold days. The days are already lengthening and soon there will be plenty of eggs again. The baby veggies are being planted in our basement and are emerging from the soil each day, before we know it, it will be time to head them out to the green house. Keep your eyes open for baby lambs, we’ll move them closer to the cabin once they are born. The ewes are walking more slowly these days with very round bellies, hopefully carrying lots of healthy twins! Even in this cold there are lots of signs that Spring is surely around the corner!

Reminders:

1) Don’t forget to curl up with some homemade hot cocoa with day spring farm milk and enjoy some quiet time before spring gets here!
2) Sign up for the CSA online soon, space is limited www.dayspringfarmva.com We have meat, veggie and lots of options
3) We are now on instagram so please follow us for cute farm pictures to let you know what your farmers are doing! We will also be having a contest on soon to win some free products so follow us and stay tuned……Day Spring Farm is our name

Keep Warm,
The Bakers