March seems to be “going out like a lion” with snow coming down fast and covering everything again. Fortunately, from the looks of the forecast, it won’t be around for long. On the up side it provides a nice opportunity for top seeding with grass seed over our fall planted grains. The snow helps us see where we have spread the seed with the last pass allowing for even seed distribution. It also helps plant the small seeds to germinate when the snow melts.
The first of our apprentices have arrived. Naomi Martz is from B. C. She has already apprenticed on a number of farms and is here to learn our methods with a particular focus on the draft horses. Aden Spurr is originally from a farm in Ontario, but also spent time in B. C. working as a glass blower for seven years. Last year, he apprenticed at Meeting Place Organic Farm using their draft horses and is now interested in honing his teamster skills and learning about CSA farming. Naomi and Aden will be with us for the season.
Rose Bramwell is a horse enthusiast, visiting from Scotland. She will be here for a few weeks now and again in the fall. She is expecting to do some other travelling during the summer months.
It is always a boost to have such fine young people with energy and enthusiasm join us on the farm this time of year. Some years we are already on the land planting by this time. This year, we are still waiting for the snow to go and the ground to thaw. However, there is always firewood to cut and split and some greenhouse work to be done. The greenhouse plants are growing well and the early head lettuce and pac choi transplants for the hoop houses are ready. Now we just need to have the ground thaw so we can move our hoop houses and get the transplants in the ground! We have also enjoyed having time to use up some of our winter stores making kimchi and sauerkraut.
Ken and Jim have been working in the shop building a prototype for a horse drawn no-till drill. It is quite challenging to assemble parts from various sources and to fit and weld it all together. Jim has been keeping up with the sanding and painting along the way.
Our CSA membership is gradually filling up. There are still shares available. We are welcoming new members as well as past members to join for the 2015 CSA season.
We now have and Orchard Hill Farm Facebook page and “Martha Laing – Tweets” – (See Links We Like on side bar if you would like to follow the updates.)