Urban Farm Updates, September 7th, 2017

Urban Farm Updates, September 7th, 2017

Fun on the Farm!

Did you know? Subsistence farmers are those who produce most of the food that they need to feed their families; but not enough to sell of share with others. Their food is not intended for sale, and eliminates their family’s need to buy very much, if any, food. Subsistence farmers eat food based on the seasons, and preserve and process their own food, to keep an abundance of summer produce throughout the wintertime.

What’s Growing On?

Progress on the Butterfly Creek Project!

This has been one busy week, with more rainy weather, tracking Hurricane Irma in the Atlantic and thinking of everyone affected by Hurricane Harvey in the gulf. Work has continued on the Butterfly Creek project and they hope to be finished with Stage 1 by the end of this week. They will then start work on the foot bridge over the creek, and the landscaping portion of the project in the following weeks. It is amazing to see how that area has transformed from a wooded and overgrown area, into the foundation for a stream bed.

New signs from Don’t Waste Food SC, to put around the farm.

I received a very large package from Don’t Waste Food SC this week, which included several signs that I will be installing at the farm next week. These signs are being encouraged for local farmers in SC that utilize natural, South Carolina produced, compost material on their farm. I will be waiting until after Hurricane Irma passed to safely install these beautiful new signs throughout the farm. I am happy to show that we use South Carolina produced compost material on the Urban Farm! That is just one of the ways that we use to be as local and sustainable as possible!

All 54 flats are going to have be tucked safely away in the Greenhouse before Hurricane Irma hits. Wind and rain are too much for my little seedlings at this stage…

The flats that I was unable to share photos of last week, are doing pretty well so far. Pretty much every single flat has experienced successful germination, and I am pleased with their growth despite all of the irregular weather; cold and hot, wet and dry. I am going to have to move all of them into the Greenhouse tomorrow, so that they will be safe over the weekend, in case we start to get any serious wind and rain early. It is moments like this that I wish I had a few of those garden carts to transport the flats, instead of making so many trips back and forth into the Greenhouse, carrying them. In the spring time, I was having to transport roughly 30 flats in and out of the greenhouse every day, while they were going through the hardening off period, before the seedlings were transplanted into the ground. Going through that process gives me a greater appreciation for just how many seedlings I transplant each year!

Malabar Spinach is still looking good despite all of the cold weather recently.

My summer crops have been a little unhappy with all of the recent cold and rainy weather, cutting back on production and dropping excess leaves, at the first signs of fall. My Malabar Spinach is one of the only summer crops that has not shown any signs of irritation at the impending cold weather. The leaves and berries are as beautiful as ever, and production has only slowed slightly, from its’ peak in the summer. I expect that my Cherry Tomatoes, which have produced over 60lbs of tomatoes so far this year are nearing the end of their production period, and my Okra are balking at the cold weather by shucking some of their large, lower leaves. My Peppers in the ground have slowed production, while the peppers in the Greenhouse have come back with a vengeance! There are flowers everywhere on those pepper bushes!

Finding unique and different vegetables is always fun!…..

The Mobile Market is down this week while we have some diagnostic work done on the truck, however, Hannah Heacox, the Mobile Market Manager has been gracious enough to hold two in-house markets here at the train museum. She will be out front of the Train Depot (298 Magnolia St, Spartanburg), on Thursday and Friday (September 7th and 8th), from 11am-6pm, making fresh South Carolina produce available to anyone who is interested in stopping by! You never know what you will find at a fall market, here in South Carolina!!

I will be hosting yet another Open Farm Saturday next Saturday, on September 16th, here on the Urban Farm, from 8:30am to noon time! I will be holding the fall gardening class from August, again, from 10am to 11am, and there will be give-a-ways for any attendees, up to the first 8 people. So, come on out and bring a friend! The gardening class costs $5.00 per person, to attend. Remember that the farm will also be open before the class, and after the class for farm tours, questions and for volunteers. If you are interested in attending the gardening class, just shoot me an email and let me know to expect you (mwhiteley@hubcityfm.org)! See you there!

As always, I look forward to sharing more farm adventures with you all next week, and I hope that you all make it safely through the Hurricane. Our prayers going out to all of those in the direct impact zone, as well as those that are still recovering from Hurricane Harvey.