08/29/09 11:43 - 65ºF - ID#49659
a sad day (tomato blight)
but late blight came to our farm this week. one week ago, our tomatoes were perfectly fine. but today we were forced to pull all of our 450 tomato plants. the signs appeared on tuesday. by thursday, i was fairly convinced, and friday i was sure. it took me a full day to convince mark, but he gave in today as well.
late blight is a disease that exists all the time, but it doesn't usually appear until after tomato season ends (after the first frost). but this year, a major distributor of seedling tomatoes (bonnie plants, in alabama) delivered infected plants to walmart, lowes, kmart, and other large stores in that vein. so everyone who bought their plants from those stores got infected plants. and although we had started organic plants from seeds, we eventually got blight, because the disease travels by air.
rochester has had no tomatoes this year. and pretty much everyone east of us didn't have any either. it is really sad.
we were actually lucky. despite the cold, rainy weather, we got to harvest vine ripe tomatoes for about 10 days before we got the blight. we got about 50 pounds of fresh, red tomatoes and enjoyed every single one of them. they were so good! i love tomatoes!
today we harvested the remaining green tomatoes that did not have signs of blight. about 200 pounds. they will ripen inside, but never taste as good as they would if they were ripened on the vines. 450 plants should give a harvest of about 4000-5000 pounds. we pulled the other plants out of the ground, because keeping them there would only help to spread the disease.
here are some photos, although the disease doesn't show up nearly as well on the photos as it does in reality. there are black splotches on the stems, the foliage is dying, and the fruits have darkened, leathery splotches. it is suggested that anyone noting this disease pull their plants right away. there is no cure, not even pesticides or fungicides at this point.
close up of green tomato. the "dead giveaway" sign of late blight is the white powdery substance, which contains the spores that are widespread by the wind.
nasty partially red tomato that rotted away, also containing white powdery spores.
our large harvest of green tomatoes.
beautiful harvest of heirloom tomatoes from the previous day.
despite this problem, will we grow tomatoes again next year?
08/07/09 07:10 - 70ºF - ID#49483
get a job, hippie!
so I've been looking for a job for over a month now.
this has been so challenging! Whenever I've wanted a job before, I've always found one in two days at the most. but this time around, I spent an entire month. I was searching the want ads in about a million places and, of course, searching on the internet. I even went to two different temp agencies, but..... nothing!
I guess it was so hard because
1. the economy sucks these days. This has expanded my awareness of the economy a whole lot and I can empathize with people in rough places so much more now.
2. I now live in the country and it's much more difficult to find a job in the country than in the city.
This was the worst: I applied at an apiary (a bee yard) for a seasonal job and the lady told me that they run that ad in the Penny Saver every year and they usually get 5-7 calls for their two positions. This year they got over 50 calls! Man, it is rough out there.
I'd advise anyone who is just irked with their job to not quit right now unless you have enough to sustain you while you search.
So, after applying to 11 jobs, I finally got one. Probably the one I like best, because I'm getting paid to farm! And to work in a greenhouse. And it's full-time, year round.
I started yesterday; It's tough work! I was sure beat when I got home yesterday. You really work every minute there, except your half hour lunch and fifteen minute break.
I get paid $9.25/hour. This is pretty incredible, because I've looked around at jobs on farms before and they only pay about $4/hour, because they call them "internships" instead of jobs.
The only problem is the pesticides. (I don't spray them, but I can feel that they're there. And I've never eaten fresh-picked tomatoes that tasted like supermarket tomatoes before!) But I guess this just makes me appreciate our own farm even more.
The best thing, apart from the money that I desperately need, is that Mark has been cooking dinner for us! Yesterday, he made an amazing tofu/rice/boiled cabbage/swiss chard dinner and today he beat that by miles with his pasta with marinara and fried green tomatoes and mushrooms:
yum! what a great thing to come home to!
07/28/09 09:32 - 74ºF - ID#49405
This has been an amazing growing season for peas. They love cool, wet weather in the summer and will keep producing until the weather gets above 80 for a few days.
I have frozen over 45 cups of peas. Unfortunately, I do not yet have a full-sized freezer, so I can't freeze any more. We are eating and giving away as many peas as we can! We have been eating them fresh from the garden nearly every day for over a month. I just might turn green.
Here is the story of my largest pea harvest in a day.
It took about an hour to harvest these peas.
Here I am shelling the peas. This took about two hours.
Here is the result after I shelled them. (The bin in the back is the empty pea pods.)
Then I boiled them for about two minutes per batch. I guess this took about 45 minutes, as I had to rinse them in cold water afterwords.
I dried the peas before bagging them. This is so they don't stick together. ( I have since bought a salad spinner for this purpose.)
End result: around 20 cups of peas this evening!
I do not understand how Tops can charge only $1 for a pound of shelled frozen peas. This is a lot of work! Don't get me wrong, though, I am happy to have enough home-grown peas to eat all winter long.
07/01/09 10:49 - 67ºF - ID#49144
So many updates. The nursing school thing sucked. So I ended up quitting school, even though I had good grades and was more than halfway through. The life in the city, not for me. I found a good man, got married last October and we started an organic farm in Holland, NY this year.
I really, really like this lifestyle. I like working outside. I love watching my vegetables grow. I love Mark and I love being married. It wasn't something I dreamed about or really planned on, but it's way better than I would have thought.
We live in the barn on Mark's family's land. I like almost everything about living in a barn, except that we don't have a bathroom. I hate getting splashed when I use the outhouse, and I miss taking showers so much more than I ever thought I would; sponge baths just do not compare.
We just started to sell our produce at the Holland farmer's market, two weeks ago. So far we have sold radishes (they sell like crazy!), escarole, kale, collards, swiss chard, and arugula. This week, we've got tons of peas, so it's going to be our first big week.
I hope all my friends out there are doing great! I haven't looked at the sight for years I think. I was just inspired because Mark ordered a digital camera last night. And I thought, hey, I should get back in to blogging because then I'll at least have a use for the camera!
03/09/07 02:40 - 42ºF - ID#38410
everyone's in a good mood.
it's friday. it's sunnny. it's warm. there is an abundance of smiles going around in buffalo this afternoon. enjoy!
i'm outisde on the porch drinking a beer with (e:bridgette), and a couple other friends, next door to pano's if you happen to be in the neighborhood...
this feels so good.
my lack of a jacket gives me so much extra ability to MOVE. i have so much energy. i'm loving spring. i feel like a plant getting energy from the sun.
goin' back outside to get some more...
03/08/07 11:53 - 16ºF - ID#38405
10 good things about today
i had a seriously bad day. so many things went wrong, and i was having a hard time getting out of feeling bad.
so i decided to make a list of ten things that were good about today. and they had to be today specific (like, i couldn't say that i am healthy, because i am healthy every day.) it actually took me a while to come up with the list, but i stuck with it. and i do feel much better now.
here it is:
1. we got a whisk broom. we haven't had one for about a week. me without a whisk broom is like (e:paul) without a computer.
2. carlos, the UPS guy, who is one of the few people in buffalo who know my last name (peace) drove by when i was waiting for the bus, gave me the peace sign and shouted out PEACE!
3. i had this intuition that i would see someone i know while on mass transit today, and i did end up seeing two people i know. (actually three, if you count carlos, but i don't really know him...)
4. i had people to talk to. i talked to my nursing friend matt while in class and had conversations with three of my roommates when i got home.
5. i read the article in buffalo rising about our coop. i thought it was a nice article, and i was impressed with the quality of the articles in the magazine in general. (i don't know how to add a link, but if i did, i would add one here of that article.)
6. i learned something i have wondered about often. ever since i saw trainspotting, i wondered about the fascination with heroin. i saw people in the movie shoot up and immediately lie down. it didn't look that fun, but i always wondered why they lie down like that. it turns out (as i learned in pharmacology today) that it's because heroin makes your blood pressure drop a ton if you're standing, so you're likely to pass out. (your blood pressure doesn't change nearly as much if you're lying down.)
7. i chose to walk to the subway instead of taking the bus this afternoon, and i enjoyed the walk.
8. there was an absolutely amazing sunset this evening. there were clouds low in the sky and due to the sun tinting on the ub shuttle, it literally looked like those clouds were an ocean. i have never seen anything like that before. words can't suffice.
9. the weather was much warmer today.
10. i got my jeans back. i know i don't get excited about possessions, BUT for the past two months, i have only had two pairs of pants i can wear. now i have three. that is much better. (to avoid having my double x chromosomes taken away by admitting that i only have two pairs of pants, i want to say that i have many more pairs of leggings and pants that go underneath the two pairs of pants i have been wearing.)
03/06/07 10:37 - 9ºF - ID#38384
as good as it gets
i just took my second exam this evening. i got an 86, which is a b. i got 80% on first exam, which is a b-, which literally meant that i was failing out of school because i need to get at least a b in every one of the classes i'm taking this semester in order to start nursing school in may.
right now, i have an 87.04% in the class (i got full credit on each of the five quizzes i took), and a b+ is an 87% (and a b is only 81%). so i'm excited that right now i have this buffer that allows me to relax a little bit.
in fact, this is the last "real" exam i have before spring break. i have a statistics exam next tuesday, but i'm really good at math, so i don't even think of statistics as a class, it's more like fun and using a part of my brain i don't often get to use anymore.
and i'm actually excited about the next class we have in my pharmacology class. we're going to study drug abuse. i already read this chapter in the book, because i have a personal interest in this topic... most of what we've learned in pharmacology i don't care for. i would enjoy an "Herbs 302" class, or (as i realized the first day i took this class), i would very much enjoy a "THC 302" class.
for now, all is good in the school department.
03/03/07 02:52 - 34ºF - ID#38336
destination: warmth, relaxation, happiness
i'm so excited!
02/28/07 03:32 - 33ºF - ID#38308
i fucking hate UB. [/
if anyone is thinking about going to school there, i would strongly advise you to go somewhere else instead. it is the worst school. every single class i'm taking there has over 200 students and no teachers who care about the classes.
and it isn't that cheap either. they stick you with about a million dollars of fees and other hidden costs--way more than any other school i've seen.
plus since it's so big, NO ONE takes any personal responsiblity for anything. i've never met such unhelpful people as those in the student response center (where you go to pay your bills.)
02/28/07 09:08 - 29ºF - ID#38305
hmm. i just walked outside and they are killing a large tree three houses down from where i live. it wasn't even destroyed in the october storm.
when i was watching this, i called the weatherman and he used the word tranquil to describe the day. he said tranquil more than once.
i don't understand all this destruction in buffalo. first i lived next door to the atwater house (next to panos) and they tore that building down. now it's just a blocked off ugly gravel area. then this poor tree, who just stays there peacefully all the time and gives us oxygen and beauty and stability.
i guess we just need to accept what is and love it all...
literally, i was just appreciating oxygen this morning. my roommate and i had been discussing the high percentage of oxygen that we get from the plankton in the ocean, so i drew a cartoon of someone swimming appreciating all of that.
My Fav Posts
- This user has zero favorite blogs selected ;(