We’ve been out with Bill and Molly (if you’ve been reading our blog, you already know that they’re our new team of Belgian draft horses), getting the soil ready for planting. They’re a diligent team, with distinct personalities, and a strong love of oats.
Jonathan has been getting the tractor and implements in fine working order, as there are acres and acres to be cultivated before planting. The rocky soil here has added the additional task of clearing rocks from the fields.
Peas, carrots and beets have been seeded 2 weeks ago, thanks to the unusal weather we have been having this spring. A first planting of peas was seeded about 3 weeks ago, and they germinated last week!
The beginning of seeding also means the beginning of weeding, which we are now doing the first time this season. The horses have been used to prep the ground prior to seeding, from discing to harrowing (many times), to hilling. Like last year, we are cultivating the vegetables on small hills of dirt. The only difference this year is that the hills were made with our horses Bill and Molly and a somewhat inexperienced teamster, which results in not-so-straight rows! But we are feeling confident that in a couple of years, we will have very straight rows!!
So just who is contributing to this blog post? It’s Kate, Ferme Mélilot’s very first intern! Kate originally hails from Halifax, NS, and intends to farm dairy goats in Ontario in a few years. She’s very happy to be contributing to the work here at the farm, even if only until the end of May, when she heads back to Ontario to start another internship at Wheelbarrow Farm.
Graham, our second intern, arrived last week. He is originally from BC, although currently resides in Montreal, where he works as a sustainable transportation coordinator at Concordia. He is looking forward to the full season here at the farm, as well as possibly organizing some bike trips up as well: http://bike2farm.wordpress.com/
We also have 3 week old kittens. Their mom, Choucroute, is very maternal; not letting Rudolf the dog come too close to her tiny kittens! They’ve chosen the recycling bin as the best place in the world to sleep (who would have thought!). Anyone looking for a cat? They’ll be great mousers, if they learn anything from their mom.
Transplanting time is fast approaching, and there are lots of little brassica and allium seedlings, as well as recently planted seeds down in the greenhouse, just waiting to go into the beckoning rocky loam later this week or the hoop house, which we just finished. Things here are greening up fast (especially the garlic, below), and with it the list of things to do grows!