This week is very exciting! We will be at all of our markets, except one. Beloit, Rockford Edgebrook, Kenosha Harbor, and Park Ridge Markets are all running this week, rain or shine. Morton Grove Market starts the second Saturday of June. Be sure to stop in and see what is growing, and greet your farmers. We look forward to catching up after a long winter break. Also, we will have some fresh greens and garden plant starts this weekend for everyone!
The challenge to get ready for this season has been greater than normal. The continued wet weather from last season has saturated the ground, and the water table is very high, leaving over half of our fields unusable. That is less land that we can farm this season, and it has made us make some tough decisions regarding what to plant. We are still fortunate. Farms throughout the Midwest are still under water. Many of our neighbors are still planting their fields, which is about 4 weeks late for them. This will negatively affect their yields and income. Farmers in Iowa, in addition to facing fields that are saturated will now have to deal with over 7 inches or rain forecast for the state this weekend! I am grateful for the crops that we do have in.
As I walk our fields, many of our crops are in good condition. We finally got our potatoes planted last week and this week we got most of the onions, cabbages, broccoli, and kohlrabi planted. Our early crops like garlic, greens, and peas look really good, and our greenhouse crops, are of course, looking good as well. Our strawberries, carrots, beets, and radishes also look good in their beds. Later season crops like peppers, eggplant, melons, and squash are all healthy in the greenhouses, waiting for the fields to dry enough to transplant them. Also, the CSA is still on track to start the first or second week of June, depending on the weather. Once it starts, it will run for 18 weeks. In all, I have every reason to be optimistic, but we could use a little drier weather for a few weeks.
Still there is much to be hopeful about and to be grateful for. I am fortunate to be able to have healthy food growing in our fields. I am hopeful for a productive season that allows us to farm again next year. Some farmers’ seasons are already done. My thoughts are with them and their families. I am also grateful for my health, my family and friends, and for the great crew who works here. Lastly, I am grateful to be able to go to market this week, and catch up with friends who I haven’t see since the fall. In many ways, life on the farm this week is wonderful!