We've been planting a lot! With the days still getting longer with the summer solstice just three weeks away, the rush is on to get as much as we can in the ground. In mid-May, we direct seeded carrots, arugula and turnips. This week, we used the new vacuum seeder to plant sweet corn, okra, dry beans and sorghum. (See photos below). That was about 1.5 acres total. We also planted an acre of winter squash: butternut, spaghetti and delicata. This last week was very hot and dry for us, so got the irrigation system up and running a little earlier than usual to water to get those seeds to germinate, especially the ones planted in mid-May. So the unexpected rain on Sunday was perfect timing for the vegetable fields!
It was really fun to use the vacuum seeder and think of all the people who contributed to helping us get that this year. It made that work so much quicker, and will be such a boon come weeding time! It also is wonderful to be doing this work for such a supportive community. Thank you!
On Sunday, we also had our annual "3 sisters" planting of corn, beans and squash. We plant heirloom seeds that have been shared among friends and passed down from generations past. The corn is rainbow colored... white, red and purple kernels to grind into cornmeal to make cornbread. We plant this as a community patch, where folks from Sustainable Agriculture Louisville come out to work together for the planting. We plant by hand, the old-fashioned way. The "3 sisters" work together in a symbiotic relationship. The corn grows tall, the beans climb up it, and the squash covers the ground with a ground cover to shade out the weeds. There are one or two weeding days before the winter squash leaves cover the ground, but once they are established, we don't have to do much else to it until harvest time in October or November. On harvest day, we share the bounty with who is there. What is harvested from this patch is never for sale, it's only meant to be shared. It's a special tradition we've been doing for eight or nine years now. On Sunday, we were finishing the very last row when the rains started. It felt like such a blessing on our little community, and the work we had just completed together.