Tuesday, 24 June 2014

June news from the farm

May was a good month for growing, with good amounts of both rain and sun. Generally crop growth was good, though it also meant the weeds were tramping away at sometimes even faster rates! On fields where there was a weed problem from last year that has caused some problems.

Phacelia, a green manure we use widely, is a fantastic flower for insects. A patch of this is often buzzing with bees all day long!

June's been a month of two halves, starting similar to May, but then turning warm, sunny and dry. Fantastic weather for holidays, and initially good for veg and fruit too. But, as ever with us on these light sandy soils, a tension between the wishes of the veg grower and the holiday maker arise the longer the dry spell goes on!

Best view from any lettuce field in the country?!
Some crops are a bit behind where we'd like them to be, particularly in the polytunnels, but it won't be long until tomatoes, cucumbers, basil and grapes are ready. We've got some very nice 'Sharpe's Express' potatoes for sale at the moment - good boiled or roasted - small, white, oval and good skin finish.

Other outdoor crops - lettuce has been very good (though would like some rain), carrots are not far from picking, onions are starting to fold over and look decent. Later in the summer we can hope for beetroot, squash, sweetcorn, more kale and chard, red onions, peppers, aubergines and beans.

Many birds have been busy nesting and many have raised a first brood and are on to the second. We have blackbirds, wrens, thrushes, starlings, dunnocks, great tits and probably some other species nesting on the farm.

Lastly, earlier this month we decided to get married! It was a very low key event with just two friends for witnesses. An absolutely stunning day, we had a wonderful picnic on Bar Point beach on St Mary's (looking over to St Martin's), and the colours were stunning - Scilly at its best. Then we went back to St Martin's, sat on the beach, went for a walk and had a night in our yurt. So it is now Mr and Mrs Smith who run Scilly Organics!
Just married! On Porthcressa beach, St Mary's