Putting the cart before the horse!


Hello everyone and welcome to this edition of the blog,

The shift towards the later part of the growing season has begun and is evident all around us. We are now done with seeding in the garden except for a few more plantings of mesclun. The section of the garden where the early crops were planted has been tilled and seeded to a soil building green manure for the fall. In the fall we use a mixture of two parts oats, one part peas, and one part common vetch.  This combination takes advantage of the rapid growth of the oats for weed suppression and the nitrogen fixation of the legumes (the peas and the vetch). This green manure will grow through the fall and be killed by winter. In the spring, we’ll till it in to help feed the crops that will grow there next year.


This week, we went to pick up a bunch of horse drawn equipment for when we will have our own farm and will have horses to do part of the farm work. We knew of someone selling all her horse equipment. Seeing as well maintained horse drawn equipment is not easy to find in Quebec (since there are no Amish communities in Quebec), we figured this was a good opportunity to get equipped. This way, when comes the time to farm with horses, we won’t be stuck searching around for all the equipment we need.  To go get the equipment, we rented a 17 ft trailer on Wednesday morning, drove to Outremont for the drop-off, and went to pick up the equipment in the west island. Driving in Montreal with the trailer behind the van was challenging but finding a parking spot was even more of a challenge.  Here is a picture below, featuring all the equipement we bought: disc harrow, 2 walk-behind cultivators, a forecart, spring-tooth harrow, a plow, a riding cultivator and a whole bunch of hardware for hitching the horses.  yeah!!  We moved all the equipement to Jolianne’s aunt’s barn, 3 hours away from Montreal.  Now, we can’t wait to find our own place and use this equipement!


And here’s a picture of the ‘Cowboy legged carrot’ found in the garden last week while harvesting for the CSA….I thought that this carrot looked like cowboy legs that have been riding for 3 days in a row!

And the last pictures…Jonathan harvesting beets on friday morning for the market in Ayer’s Cliff and the gorgeous little sunflower patch we have in the garden.

And finally, here is a recipe that combines the redness of the beets you received this week and the delicacy of dill.

GRATED RAW BEET SALAD from Farmer John’s Cookbook

  1. Grate about 4 medium beets to give about 3-4 cups in total.
  2. Combine 1/2 cup oil (sunflower oil does good), 3 tablespoon of white wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon of finely chopped fresh onion, 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard, 1 small glove of garlic (minced), black pepper.  Transfer in a jar, and with the lid tightly screwed on, shake the jar vigorously until the oil and vinegar are thickened. 
  3. Pour over the grated beets and toss until well coated.  Add 2 tablespoon of dill.

This salad gets better if you let it marinate a day in the refrigerator so as to concentrate the flavor.


DILL is also very good with potatoes  (mashed potatoes, potatoes salad, roasted potatoes) and also good with cucumber in a cucumber/dill salad:  Simply use your 2 cucumbers, about 1 cup of plain yogurt, salt, pepper. lemon juice or apple cider vinegar and as much dill as you want.  


Enjoy your weekend!

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