Urban Farm Updates, June 14th, 2018
Fun on the Farm!
Did you know? One type of Potato Blight in Ireland, first appearing in 1845, was responsible for the near complete potato crop loss across all of Ireland?! This fungus blight resulted in a crop loss than was the cause of roughly half a million human deaths, and which started a mass exodus from Ireland over the next several years. The blight is so catastrophic; it can completely kill a Potato plant in just 10 days and spreads easily under warm, damp and windy conditions. This blight decimated crop fields at a rapid pace, all across Ireland. Scientists have since developed several varieties of Potatoes, which are more resistant to the Late Blight, and which can help to reduce the amount of crops lost each yer due to pests and diseases.
What’s Growing On?
With all of the recent rain and sunshine, it seems like my plants are growing overnight. I go home at the end of the day and they are one size, I come back the next morning and they are several inches taller! I have had some incredible volunteers on the farm over the past week! A young man from the Northside Neighborhood has taken the Urban Farm on as his summer project to keep himself occupied and productive while school is out! He has come depsite all of the heat and humidity and put a great deal of heart and soul into his work on the farm, and for all that he has already done, I am eternally grateful! I can only hope that we can make an equally positive impact in his life as well! This young man was very influential in the completion of the Hillside Garden; adding fresh Atlas Organics compost to the terrace beds and helping to plant the seeds throughout.
I also had a crew out on the farm Tuesday morning (yes, Tuesday, the day is was wet and rainy all morning)! That crew from the St Johns Lutheran Church Youth Group are a dedicated bunch! The team came out with high spirits despite the weather and we got some good work done! With there help we cleaned up two rows from their winter/spring crops, pulled back the old plastic, added a fresh layer of compost and then added fresh plastic and direct seeded the new crops. They also helped me to install the trellising on my front row of Tomatoes, which have just grown so quickly! They are already covered in little baby tomatoes, so they needed to be trellised, badly! I have included more photos of the work that we accomplished on Tuesday, at the bottom of the blog post, so be sure to check them out!
Cat and Luke’s raised beds are doing wonderful, with the plants growing at an insane rate! Luke has already harvested several pounds of herbs from his raised bed, and at the rate that Cat’s pepper and tomato plants are growing, we will be kept pretty busy harvesting those in the not to distant future. This week, I have to develop a concept to trellis Cat’s cherry tomato plant up off the ground, as it clearly has a mind of its’ own and appears to be attempting a complete take over the farm!
My Kiwifruit vines are finally starting to really grab onto the trellis and climb upwards, which is really exciting to see! I wish that I could have seen underground, and been able to watch the root system at work since they were planted, while they appeared to be growing so slowly. It will never cease to amaze me, watching plants grab onto a trellis, voluntarily, and reach towards the sky. I am very excited, every day, to walk by my grape vines and Kiwifruit, to see them to grow a little taller every day and realize that one day in the next few years they will be reaching all of the way up and over the arbor and the Pergola. To be able to know that myself, volunteers and Wofford students will be able to reach up and pick bunches of grapes and kiwi off of those vines; there are no words to describe how good that feels! Here at the Urban Farm, we are conquering one little mountain at a time!
Don’t forget to go and check out the Peach Jam at Harvest Park, this Saturday, from 6-10pm! There will be good music and fun things to do, so go check it out and help to support the Hub City Farmers Market and all that we do out in the Spartanburg community!
I hope that you all have a most wonderful week, and I look forward to sharing more Urban Farm adventures with you all again next week! Please let me know if you have any questions or comments (firstname.lastname@example.org)! Until next time, bye ya’ll!