Farm Journal 7/16/22

CSA pick up Week #7 (Odd weeks)

Click here to shop our web-store – Sale on Pork Loin. Italian Basil and garlic is on the list too!

If you want eggs – especially if you’d like us to bring them to the markets – please order them online! This is also a great way to guarantee that you’ll get chicken, pork roasts, or other specific cuts from our freezers – as we bring a limited variety of meats for retail to the markets.

We expect to have our freezers re-stocked by Wednesday. You can keep an eye on our website to see if we’ve updated it with bacon, sausages and other porcine goodies!

Where to find us?!

The Farm – WEDNESDAY (11 – 7).

Northside – Friday 3 – 7 farmers market in Allegheny Commons.

Mt Lebanon Uptown Market – Saturday 9-12

Squirrel Hill Market – Sunday 9 – 1 at the Beacon/Bartlett Parking Lot

East Liberty Market – Monday 3:30 – 6:30 – at the new Liberty Green Park)

A typical day in the life of this farm: – jen

Friday morning, we were up early. Greg got Olivia fed and off to swim lessons, while I pulled orders and packed up for our Northside Market. Olivia went with us to market, so I had to drive separately and Greg asked me to grab hotdogs when I left the farm. By the time I got to market, I realized I forgot the hotdogs. I hustled back to the farm then back to market (in the midst of rt 28 construction), and was only 15 mins late! Greg had to set up the market stand with Olivia’s help (she sold a couple paintings).

After market, we head home, flash unload the van, and head over to the Heights to check out the local church carnival. A few rides and some Beatles cover songs later, we head home around 10 pm. Greg puts the kids to bed, while I take August with me to close up the chickens for the night.

We’ve had some problems with raccoons lately (they kill chickens for sport), so I grab a stick for self-defense, in case we come across anything nefarious. August, who has killed his first ground hog earlier this week, has found a new purpose in life and is on a mission to rid this farm of all small to mid-sized rodents (and musteloids in this case).

As we near the barn, I hear a frantic scuffle and see August barrel out of the barn with a fat raccoon wrapped around his face! They duke it out in the barnyard with lots of growls and hisses. I get a few wacks in on the raccoon when August steps back for a breather. He then snubs my assistance and take the raccoon off into the dark. There’s a second raccoon that climbed the barn wall and was hiding in the rafters. I thwack him with a stick and he runs off.

Then, I hear a piglet squealing frantically. One of the piglets that we just weaned had its head caught in a pallet/wall…. and I’m wearing my Birkenstock sandals. I walk back to the house for proper foot-ware and find August proudly guarding the raccoon!

With muck boots on, I head back to the barn to rescue the piglet. His head’s so wedged, there’s no way I can get him loose. I head back to the house (again) for the tiger saw and then back to the barn (again) to cut up the pallet and free a piglet. With the barnyard back in order, I close up the chickens, head out to the veggie fields to check for deer and close up the gate. August and I take a moment to enjoy the silence and watch all the fireflies on a moonless night. Time for bed at 11:30 pm!

I wondered what life would be like if all I had to do was turn off the TV and go to bed. I can’t imagine.

As for the fields – it’s still pretty dry and now I’m thinking about rationing the pond water for irrigation. I remember, two years ago, we ran the pond dry in September – and we’re already irrigating more and earlier than we were then. It’s not a crisis here and I’m feeling fortunate that we’re able to still water, and the crops are still growing. It’s definitely time to buckle down and adapt our farming systems to a more resilient nature. Each year we try a new system or two and see what works for our labor, pocketbook and local resources.

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