All posts by mountce6

2016…A Dedicated Farming Season

Views through time of the fields from the front porch

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It appears as though we will have three rounds of melon harvest this season.  We have had a go round with cutworm damage to the first and second plantings.  The third and final planting will have individual cardboard collars around each plant to create a barrier.  We did have some melons survive from the first and second plantings.  Pictured above are caribbean gold, papaya dew and watermelon.

Tomatoes will come in many varieties, with midseason reds and large heirlooms!

Corn fields are thriving!  This mosaic shows growth through time.

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Cucumbers are starting to run and flower!  After a few rounds of hoeing weeds, we spread a nice thick bed of straw around them to conserve water, keep a soft top layer of soil, and have a clean bed for them to lie on as they grow.

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Lots of onion varieties and leeks this season!

Showing progression backwards in time.  We will have summer squash and zucchini for our first market on July 11th!

We found it to work out better when the four of us work as a team to lay the straw, rather than using the straw blower.  This way, it is placed more strategically and is more gentle to the plants.

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Strong stand of purple and white eggplant!

POTATOES!!!

Yukon Gold, Russet Burbank, and Purple Viking potatoes have been hilled, and mulched heavily with organic aged bark and straw.  They just keep on growing taller, so we will be putting on another layer of straw soon.  This could mean lots of taters!

Sean on top of straw bales, Omi and Opi with first harvest share, and Mt. Shasta!

We are blessed to have this beautiful view of the mountain.  That’s why we are

Mountain View Organics!!!

Spring 2016

2016 marks the beginning of our fourteenth season of farming Mountain View Organics.  The fields are disked and cover cropped, which brought us some beautiful visitors to the open fields.  The cranes pictured below faithfully landed on the seeded fields each morning until the seeds germinated.  I see these same birds down the road a piece on another open seeded field.  These cranes are a rare sight around here and are welcome.  We do not mind sharing a few seeds with them for the tranquility and beauty they provide.

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Skye is driving the John Deere up the freshly graveled drive after disking the fields.  No rototilling this season, simply disk and drag prior to opening up furrows for planting with a triangular blade.

Record rainfall this winter brought a multitude of blossoms on our fruit trees. Pictured from left to right are nectarine, apricot, and cherry blossoms.

Flats of transplant containers filled with vitality for a healthy start.  We watch the biodynamic calendar for optimum planting dates for the various crops.

A variety of tomatoes from paste to large red heirlooms were started in flats, then transplanted to 6-packs, and later to 3″ and 4″ pots for momentum and prime readiness for transplanting in May.

Red and green cabbage show steady growth.

Greens, including various lettuces, kale, and mustard will be planted this weekend, along with onions, potatoes, broccoli, and cabbage!

Seedlings of watermelon, various muskmelons, and cucumbers show a healthy germination rate.

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Who says that corn can’t be transplanted???  We do it!

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This is why we’re called Mountain View Organics!

Harvest!

Harvesting cucumbers…

Bucket-fulls of cucumbers…

Lemon cucumbers

Galia melons are the best!

Melon display at the Mt. Shasta Farmers’ Market

Various seedless grapes!  We’re making raisins…

Potato harvest for the family

Buckets of onions in from the field

Red Torpedo and Red Defender

Walla Walla

Silver Queen Corn

Displays loaded and ready for market!

Thank you to the good people of Mt. Shasta!  We are glad you like our food!!!

Spiders and Snakes!

 

Gopher snake!  A good guy in the garden…they help to keep the rodent population in check.  It is, however, startling when bending down to harvest a beautiful zucchini, to find that diamond pattern with the same coloration as the deadly rattlesnake right at one’s fingertips!  Look for the rattle…also the head is shaped slightly different, with the rattlesnake having more of a triangular head.

 

 

 

Cucumbers are reaching out, flowering, and producing fruit!Painted serpent, or striped Armenian cucumber

Walla Walla onions bulbing up nicely!

The tall proud red guy is the rooster…he’s a nice one!  The hens are quite happy!

Baby chick born…mama hen keeps watch!

 Tomatoes are forming and hanging on the vines!

Black widow…what a beautiful spot for your web…you carry a deadly venom, but when you look so healthy and nurturing towards your young, it is tough to kill you…just don’t come into the house and you will survive!

Blackberries starting to develop a little color…

Melon field

Melons growing…hope to have some for market soon!

Omi and Opi are happy with this early harvest share!

Jordan and Sean prepping 2nd field of summer squash

Lots of hula hoeing!

Skye shot a rabbit…sad to take its life, but when this beautiful creature methodically eats all that we have grown, there isn’t much choice…View of Mt. Shasta from Mountain View Organics

Bunnies are so BUSTED!!!

Halona melons are usually the first to harvest, but we have had nightly visitations out in the melon fields.  At first, the foliage was being eaten.  Next, when the melons started forming, they were munched by some critters, which we correctly guessed were rabbits.  Here we have EVIDENCE!!!  They have been caught in the act on our Bushnell night vision motion sensor camera!!!  A glowing eye can be seen on the right side of the picture…                                                                             Now we see two eyes…Long ears…we see you!Good…eat from that melon pile…instead of taking a fresh bite out of each and every melon.Clearly…you are a rabbit!Yeah…you!  We have EVIDENCE!!!  These after-midnight parties have got to end!

4th of July Storm

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View of sky looking towards farm from Lake Shastina on the 4th of July.  A huge storm hit us on the 4th, causing the gulch to open up and cut pathways through the farm.  Needless to say, we have been repairing damage to save our crops.

This gulch remains dry most often, but can become a raging river during a strong storm.  It opened up the night of July 4th and cut streams throughout the farm and down the road.

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Fairly substantial scar running down from gulch.  Rock pile at top of property calms the torrent, but did not stop it.

Empty field next to corn shows where water flowed through.

????????????? Corn flattened…

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Jordan and Skye prop corn up with shovel scoops of soil.

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Same field…standing straight and tall!

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This is a later planting of corn, younger and more resilient…we waited to see if it would right itself…

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It appears as though all is well with the corn at present.

20150707_190626Watching the storms on July 7th…wondering…20150707_190754Dramatic skies!

?????????????This is why we’re called Mountain View Organics!