12147 Corey Lake Road, Three Rivers, Michigan (269) 244-5690

Monthly Archive: March 2012

Crop Update, Easter Sales and Plants for Sale

Crop update:  It looks like so far our crops made it through  Monday night’s cold temperature, but there are probably some more worrisome nights ahead of us yet.   If you have driven by lately, you’ll see that virtually everything is now in full bloom, which normally happens in May.  So be forewarned, everything will be early this year.  As soon as the weather settles out, we’ll try to provide you with a forecast as to when you can expect certain crops.

Peaches in bloom, with sweet cherries blooming in the background, 3-25-12

Sweet Corn is still coming, Knee high by Mother's Day??!!

 Asparagus:  Mother nature gave the signal with the warm temperatures for the asparagus to start, we picked about a bushel, then with the cool weather this week, it has slowed down considerably.   Given the current weather, we may have it for sale in about a week.  If you want to have us call you when it is ready, please call the market and leave your phone number and how many pounds you would like:   269-244-5690.  What does look promising, again depending on the weather, is you could plan asparagus into your Easter dinner!

Baked goods for Easter:  Since we expect to be open for Easter, our bakers will do special Easter orders, available for pick up on Saturday, April 7th.  The Easter selection and pricing will be:

Cookies: 

  • Decorated egg-shaped sugar cookies (75 cents each)
  • Monster cookies (50 cents each)
  • Chocolate chip cookies (50 cents each)

Pies:  $9 each

  • Peach
  • Cherry
  • Dutch Apple
  • Regular Apple
  • Blueberry

Please order in advance by calling us at 269-244-5690 or by leaving us an email back.   Include information on what you want and a phone number.

Tomato Update:  With the 80+ degree weeks we had in March, the greenhouse averaged about 100 degrees each day, so our greenhouse tomatoes are ahead of schedule and looking great.

Lots of little green tomatoes coming! 3-27-12

Even the fifty some plants we have in the field have little tomatoes on them, which is why we covered them up Monday night to protect them from frost damage.

Covering up field tomatoes on 3-26-12 to protect from frost

Plants/Seed Potatoes for sale:  We have  plants available for sale as our stock came in this week and we have some extra.  Call us at 269-244-5690 or email us if you would like to have us save some for you.

Strawberry varieties are:  Annapolis, Earliglow, AC Wendy, Jewel, Allstar and Donna.  They are $1.50 per plant.

Onion Plants varieties (All sweet) are:  Candy, Red Candy Apple, Super Star, Yellow Spanish, White Spanish-Ringmaster.  They are 5 cents per plant.

Seed Potatoes--Red Norland:  These are 10 cents/potato.  This is the same kind that we have grown and sold here for years.

Large Tomato Plants:  These are about 2 feet tall and are in bloom.  Consider buying a tomato plant for someone’s Easter gift this year instead of the traditional flower!!  These are the perfect size for a large patio pot or to put a few out in the yard or garden for early tomatoes.    We have Biltmore and Rocky Top available.  These large plants are $6 each or 2/$10.  We will have the normal field tomato plants for sale later in May.

Large tomato plants for sale

All for now, Happy spring!

Beth

 

 

 

 

Tomato plant sighting in the field, Last chance for asparagus roots

Many have now concluded that we went a bit crazy this weekend when they caught us putting 50 tomato plants out in the field!  Everyone knows Dad’s quest to have the first tomato ready in Michigan, and this year, he has beat out his 50 year record for having tomatoes in the field on March 18!    If we can get our customers some of our great-tasting tomatoes that much earlier, we’re all for it!  We figure if it gets cold again, we’ll just baby them along, yes, these are the little things we do for you!  Please wish us no frost.

Dad helping to get 50 tomato plants in the field on March 18th

Asparagus Roots:  We still have more asparagus roots for sale through Weds March 21st.   They are 25 cents each, we have Jersey Knights (regular green asparagus) and Purple asparagus.  Please call us on 269-244-5690 and tell us how many you would like or respond to this email.    They are available on the market now. If you have already placed an order, please plan to come pick it up soon.  Our apologies, we seem to have gotten someone’s order mixed up and mistakenly taken by another customer, if you did not get your roots and still want some, please let us know.

Coming in May:  Vegetable plants and our famous tomato plants, we are always plant extra so that you can buy your plants from us for your own garden.  We would advise you to wait until closer to the “normal” planting season for these.

Enjoy the weather!

Beth

 

 

Spring fever and Asparagus Roots for Sale

So when the weather is this beautiful, some people get out their bikes, fly kites and head to the park with their families.  What do we do?  Go a little bit crazy and decide to plant sweet corn and green beans.  We just couldn’t resist, the conditions were so perfect.  So, if this unseasonably warm weather holds, we could have sweet corn for your Memorial Day picnic!

Jay, Dave and Greg getting the first 8 rows of sweet corn in on March 14!

Today we planted 10,000 asparagus roots for a new 3 acre field.  If anyone would like to get some for your own garden, please respond to this email or call us at 269-244-5690 and leave a message with  name, number and how many you would like.  We have Jersey Knights and Purple asparagus roots available for 25 cents each.  We need to hear from you in the next 2 days, otherwise we will go ahead and plant them.  We’ll be happy to tell you how to plant them, (really very easy) but you will have to wait about 3 years to get your first asparagus.

Michaela and Jay drop roots into the trenches while Dave covers them, 3-15-12

 

Denim thought we dug these deep dirt trenches just for him to lay in!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Enjoy the beautiful weather and let’s keep our fingers crossed that a cold spell does not come!

Beth

 

Spring 2012 – Update

I have been working on this update for a few weeks now and as you local folks know, the weather has alternated from snow on the ground to mud, from snowflakes to rain, from brisk wind to balmy-like spring air within a matter of days, like it seems to have done all winter! Many of you have been asking about this unusual mild winter and if the crops are okay. We are watching things very closely and so far do not see any signs of winter damage, but certainly our fruit trees, vines and other perennials like blueberries and strawberries are pretty confused about what they should be doing.

How long before you can make a BLT? We have 900 tomato plants thriving in the greenhouse which we planted mid February. We hope that means we’ll have tomatoes for you late April or May. I have to admit on some of the real winter days it’s been great to work in the tropical-like atmosphere of the greenhouse. It’s a great place to sneak away with a book, as long as no one discovers you!

Beth and Dad potting tomato plants, 2-12

900 plants potted and growing, 2-12

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tomatoes beginning to blossom, 3-9-12

Tomatoes approximately one month after planting, they are doing beautifully!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grape pruning: In January, we finished trimming our 100 acres of grapes, a big thank you to the crew that worked a solid two months on this. Now the crew is going back through the vineyards tying the vines to the trellis system. The annual grape pruning is the longest job we have here on the farm (and you thought we were just taking it easy this winter!!)

Dad trimming a grapevine, 1-12

 

Grape vines tied to wire for proper growing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You are never too old to learn…during the slower paced days of winter, we try to stay current with the ever changing world of agriculture. Last month I attended a 2 day seminar at MSU which reinforced good horticulture practices, provided some new information on various fruits and vegetables, and gave me the incentive to try growing a few new things this year. (It’s a secret until they are planted and growing!)

Earlier this year, my son Jay and I got involved with the Grape-A system certification, which is a structured approach to ensuring viable viticulture and environmental sustainability for our grape vineyards. As we move forward to achieve this certification level for our farm, this means you can rest assured that we are doing all of the “right things” possible to ensure that our vineyards produce good quality grapes while ensuring that the land is taken care of as well.

Last, I have started working on a viticulture degree, (the study of vines.) I am attending classes weekly plus doing “hands-on” apprenticeship work under the mentorship of an area viticulturist. I am really enjoying learning the scientific aspects of what takes to grow grapes. I know this is going to help me better identify problems as they occur and prevent them in our vineyards. Plus, for those of you who come to the market asking questions about caring for your own grapevines, I’ll be better equipped. So, that “good book” I am reading when I sneak away to the greenhouse is actually one of the textbooks!

With the “real” spring quickly upon us, we are already picking up the pace to finish our winter pruning jobs so we can begin the spring planting. We hope you have had a good winter and we look forward to seeing you in a few months when we will have plants, asparagus and hopefully our greenhouse tomatoes for sale!

Beth