Transplants, both vegetable and animal
Greetings! It has been a busy past few weeks at Simington Gardens. We are still transplanting away at the farm. Many brassica crops have been planted outdoors, such as collards, cabbages, broccoli, cauliflower and several varieties of kale. Chard, beets, chicories and fennel have been planted out as well. We have been fortunate to get all of the plantings in just before the rain has come. Many hands on the farm have made quick work of these plantings. In the past two weeks, we have gained six more people on the farm, with some moving across the country to come work and live at the farm. We have also gained some new and exciting equipment and tractors. Stay tuned for some photos and a post about the new gear. We are excited about all the new faces and able to accomplish a much longer task list so far this spring. Every year our crew grows and we are very happy that farming as a job and a lifestyle is becoming more and more popular, particularly in the Northwest where we are able to produce so much food year round. Still, with twelve more hands we have a lot of summer weather starts to pot up, continued seeding and transplanting and now weeding our new plantings. With most of the overwintering crops worked back into the soil, harvest is a little lighter and we can get to more projects like putting up more greenhouses and planting tomatoes.
All of our early planted tomatoes are heirloom varieties that go out in hoop houses on black mulch. This ensures that these hot weather plants stay warmer this early in the spring. The black mulch helps trap heat and keep it near the roots of the plants while also helping keep the raised beds from eroding. Raised beds help keep soil temperatures up as well and increase drainage and allow roots more room to grow in loftier soil. Tomato roots will find their way quite a ways down in the ground by the end of the season. These tomatoes will be watered by drip irrigation lines under the mulch, which provides a very efficient and effective watering system, as the mulch slows evaporation allowing us to water less, resulting in much more flavorful tomatoes. Heirloom slicing and cherry tomatoes are some of the most popular items we grow on the farm. This year we have over twenty varieties of all shapes and colors. All of these varieties will be available as certified Organic plant starts during the first month or so at our farmer’s market stands for everyone that would like to grow their own tomatoes this year, along with a wide selection of other certified Organic vegetable starts. As much as we love to sell our produce, we also love to encourage everyone to try to grow their own food. Vegetable gardening is a fun, educational and rewarding activity and a great way to bring friends and family together. Just like farming, it connects communities through food. Being farmers, we feel that these connections are some of the most important ones to make. Also probably the tastiest. Stop by our booths at the Beaverton and Oregon City markets the first Saturday in May to pick out vegetable starts and ask gardening qestions. With all the new additions and favorable weather we are looking forward to the start of market season.
Thank you all for your support,
The Simington Gardens Team