April 25, 2022
This month has been all about building our nursery. The nursery is an essential part of a market garden because at some points we have over a hundred trays of plants inside it that need to stay between 50℉ and 80℉ ideally. It's not somewhere you want to be tight on space so this year we decided to turn our third hoophouse into our nursery. We used salvaged materials (wire fencing and old deck boards) to build 24 tables to fill the nursery space. Tyler is installing our irrigation system for it this week and putting in the mesh floor so we should be in full production by the end of the week and not a day too late!
Spring planting is well under way. Cold hardy crops like green onion, kale, peas, carrots and arugula are thriving in the cool weather. Photos from left to right: green onion transplants, carrot bed, peas, carrots and arugula germinating, garlic beds, and kale.
We attempted something new this year and grafted our tomatoes. Grafting happens between a rootstock variety that is really vigorous and grows great hardy roots and any tomato variety you want to fruit. The plants are spliced together and go through a week long healing process. The reasons for grafting are numerous but we primarily grafted this year because the plants are more resistant to soil borne disease in a limited rotation environment like a hoophouse and they can produce 30-50% more tomatoes. Risky? Yes. Worthwhile? We'll find out this season. Allison did the grafting and spent the week fussing over them like a mother hen. We think they are all going to survive and it was a success!
We're heading into the busy season soon! The Baileys Harbor farmers market is only three weeks away and we'll do another newsletter before then.