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Posted 12/19/2014 8:10am by Cheryl Ferguson.

Hello Farm Friends!  Happy Friday!

Scurrying around to get everything done before the Big Day -- elves?  Well sort of!  It's the Plum Granny Farm crew scurrying to get the garlic in the ground this week!  As of yesterday, we had close to 24,000 cloves planted for bulb and fresh garlic.  Today we're on a push to get the spring garlic in the ground.  It's got to get in there today because of the forecast rain for next week.  Mud + garlic = Yuck

Ray, Chris & Jen planting garlic    Planting garlic  Cats helping plant garlic   

Putting dibbles on the dibbler for spring garlic    Comfy Ajo in the garlic planting supplies

Another farm activity this week has been getting some foundations repaired on a couple of buildings.  We found a really good mason and had him do some work for us.  Time has taken its toll on the Yam Barn & Tobacco Barn foundations so we had them shored up and put in new footings and waterproofing.  We also built out the foundation of the Corral Building that my brother built about 20 years ago -- we hope to get a roof on it before long.  Here's Ray showing the work that was done on the Yam Barn.  More pictures later...

Footings at the Yam Barn

This will be our last edition for the year -- we're taking a few days off to relax over the Holidays.  Thank you for supporting our farm and for sharing what we are doing here by reading our newsletter.  We really appreciate your words of support and encouragement as well as your business! And most of all, we are most grateful for your friendship and trust.

Here's wishing you all the most wonderful Holiday Season ever!  Happy Hanukkah, Merry Christmas, Joyous Solstice and all good wishes for a Happy & Healthy New Year!! 

Until 2015,

Cheryl & Ray

Posted 12/11/2014 1:14pm by Cheryl Ferguson.

Hello Farm Friends!  Happy Thursday!

Another busy week on the farm!  Although this week has been a bit more oriented to indoor tasks than out.  Yesterday was the day for our annual Organic Certification inspection.  Whew!  We submitted our plan back in August and were waiting to hear about the on-site inspection.  Late last week we got the call from our certifier -- Wednesday was the day!  Our Organic Systems Plan is an extensive document but it is only part of what we must do for certification.  The on-site inspection is very thorough and involves a complete farm walk as well as reviewing our documentation -- half a day at least.  One of the parts that we have to be prepared for is to show our all crops from seed to sale -- a complete audit of when we seeded, when and how much was planted, what was harvested and how much we sold.  It takes a LOT of preparation -- but we think we did fine!  We should be hearing back from the certifying agency in a month or so.  Keep your fingers crossed!

Ray preps for site visit

So why do we go through this every year?  We believe it provides an important assurance to our customers regarding how we grow our crops.  Unlike vague terms like "naturally grown" or "no spray", what we produce is regulated through an extensive Federal certification process. From the seed we plant to our tent at market, we have specific requirements that we must meet to ensure that the food you enjoy from us is grown in a way that nourishes the land (and you!).  We deeply appreciate your trust in us and thank you for supporting a Certified Organic farm!

Garlic Update:  No it's not all planted yet....We decided to let the soil continue to dry out and to give us time to sort through the cloves of cracked garlic and pick out the biggest ones for planting.  There may be a crop mob late next week so stay tuned!

Just wanted to remind you that as you are doing your Holiday shopping for friends and family outside of the immediate area, we can help!  Our jams & garlic products make great gifts and we are happy to take care of the wrapping and shipping for you!  Santa's purple elves to the rescue!

Thanks for all of the well wishes for Wally!  He seems to be very happy in his new home and his new family has sent a couple of photos along.  Had to share this one with you -- do you think he is going to be spoiled?

Wally and Hayden

Market Update:  

This week's market is the final Cobblestone Farmers Market Pop-Up!  It's on Saturday (12/13) in the parking lot behind Mary's Gourmet Diner (7th & Trade in Downtown Winston-Salem) from 10-noon.  You'll find all kinds of great things on our tables -- many perfect for gift-giving!

Garlic Lovers Gift Box

  • Fresh baby turmeric
  • Garlic (Music, Inchelium, Red Toch & Purple Italian)
  • Garlic Sampler Bags
  • Garlic Braids (4 bulb & 10 bulb)
  • Garlic Powder & Granules
  • Garlic Lovers Gift Box (braid, garlic sampler bag & garlic powder)
  • Sweet Potatoes (Covington)
  • Fingerling Potatoes
  • Lettuce (Oakleaf Head Lettuce)
  • Windowsill Herb Gardens
  • Jam Gift Boxes
  • 9 varieties of Jam (including our tasty Yam's Jam Sweet Potato Butter)
  • Mistletoe
  • and MORE!

As a reminder, if there is anything that you would like for us to hold for you at market just let us know by e-mail, by the evening before, and we will be glad to put it aside for you.

Enjoy Poinsettia Day tomorrow!  Take a trip up to visit our friends at Mitchell's Nursery & Greenhouse in King and feast your eyes on their huge selection of poinsettias.  They grew over 8000 this year and you can vote on your favorite variety as part of the national poinsettia trials.

Until our next edition,

Cheryl & Ray

Posted 12/5/2014 12:09pm by Cheryl Ferguson.

Hello Farm Friends!  Happy Friday!

It seems like it has taken an entire week to recuperate from the FABULOUS Small Business Saturday Holiday Market and Open Greenhouse.  Wow!  What an amazing response we had!  We estimate that nearly 300 people came to the farm to support local farms and producers and to Shop Small for the Holidays -- and we are so grateful for your support!  We were seriously rocking the greenhouse from the beginning to the end of the day!! 

Thanks again to our great vendors:  Benutty Bakes & Butters, Front Door Designs by Jonna, Greenberries Farm,and Truffles NC and a BIG thanks to our collaborators, Buffalo Creek Farm & Creamery.  Enjoy a few pictures from the day:

Market scene from Greenberries Farm booth  Jane at Small Business Saturday  Ajo taking a break from the action  Lots of people walked on this welcome mat!

Despite all of the recuperation needed from our Really Big Day, we have managed to get some garlic in the ground this week.  The conditions are still dreadful but it's gotta get in there!!  Here's Chris planting while Ray shapes beds on the tractor.

Planting garlic 2014

Chris has almost been a one-man planting machine!  Thanks Chris -- you rock!

Chris planting garlic

And here's an update on our search for a home for Wally -- we found him a wonderful home with the May Family of Kernersville!  He'll have two little people to play with now and will be shielded from the dangers of Flat Shoals Road.  His new mom says he will really be spoiled.  Thanks so much, Cheyenne & family for giving him a great home!

Wally's new family

Market Update:  

This week's market is the Cobblestone Farmers Market Pop-Up on Saturday in the parking lot behind Mary's Gourmet Diner (7th & Trade in Downtown Winston-Salem) from 10-noon.  You'll find all kinds of great things on our tables -- many perfect for gift-giving!

  • Fresh baby turmeric
  • Garlic (Music, Inchelium & Purple Italian)
  • Garlic Sampler Bags
  • Garlic Braids (4 bulb & 10 bulb)
  • Garlic Powder & Granules
  • Garlic Lovers Gift Box (braid, garlic sampler bag & garlic powder)
  • Sweet Potatoes (Covington)
  • Fingerling Potatoes
  • Windowsill Herb Gardens
  • Jam Gift Boxes
  • 9 varieties of Jam
  • Mistletoe
  • Paperwhite Narcissus
  • and MORE!

As a reminder, if there is anything that you would like for us to hold for you at market just let us know by e-mail, by the evening before, and we will be glad to put it aside for you.

Enjoy Mitten Tree Day tomorrow -- probably invented by a grade school teacher but can be celebrated by all ages.  Read The Mitten to young children, add mittens to your Christmas tree or donate some to your favorite shelter.

Until our next edition,

Cheryl & Ray

Posted 11/28/2014 9:08am by Cheryl Ferguson.

Hello Farm Friends!  Happy Friday!

We hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving filled with friends, family, relaxation and all the things you are thankful for!

Our focus this week has been to get ready for the Holiday Season.  It has definitely been a jamming week!  Jen and Cheryl spent lots of time at the Camp Hanes kitchen making batch upon batch of your favorite jams.  We made large jars and gift-size jars and are all ready for you and your orders!  Just as a reminder, check out our website to learn more about the jam that we make -- we now have NINE varieties!  And we are happy to ship!

Jam gift boxes are ready to go

We have been harvesting more of the turmeric and will have lots for Saturday's market.  Here are Jen and Chris showing off their handiwork!

Jen and Chris with turmeric

We have been working especially hard to get ready for our Holiday Market and Open Greenhouse event tomorrow (11/29 from 10-4).  It's our first time to participate in Small Business Saturday and it has been fun to get all of the cool things they have put together for the day -- everything from posters to balloons and even a welcome mat!  We have partnered with Buffalo Creek Farm and Creamery to promote the event at both of our farms.  At our farm, there will be a wide variety of products to choose from including baked goods, peanut butters, truffle products, eggs, produce, gift items, photographs, wreaths and more!  Help us welcome BeNutty Bakes and Butters, Greenberries Farm, Truffles NC and Front Door Designs by Jonna to our farm! There will even be a campfire for s'mores, refreshments, lots of door prizes and you can even choose & cut your own cedar Christmas tree! Shop Small, ya'll!

Market Update:  

This week's market is Small Business Saturday at the Farm (10-4)!  You'll find all kinds of great things on our tables -- many perfect for gift-giving!

  • Fresh baby ginger (limited quantity) & turmeric
  • Garlic & Garlic Sampler Bags
  • Garlic Braids
  • Garlic Powder & Granules
  • Garlic Lovers Gift Box (braid, garlic sampler bag & garlic powder)
  • Sweet Potatoes (Covington & Ginseng)
  • Fingerling Potatoes
  • Sweet Italian Red peppers
  • Bok Choy
  • Lettuce
  • Windowsill Herb Gardens
  • Jam Gift Boxes
  • 9 varieties of Jam
  • Mistletoe
  • Holiday Greens
  • Paperwhite Narcissus
  • and MORE!

Paperwhite narcissus

As a reminder, if there is anything that you would like for us to hold for you at market just let us know by e-mail, by the evening before, and we will be glad to put it aside for you.

Until our next edition,

Cheryl & Ray

Posted 11/14/2014 9:32am by Cheryl Ferguson.

Hello Farm Friends!  Happy Friday!

Looking at the forecast for the next few days, it sure feels like winter is upon us!  Will definitely be a frosty morning at market tomorrow so we'll have on our layers, for sure!

Today marks the day for planting shallots.  The rain last week created poor soil conditions but it finally dried out enough to get the beds shaped.  Ray and Chris (with the help of the NC A&T State University bedshaper) got several beds made up late yesterday so we will be planting French Red and Greeley shallots today!  Our shallot crop this year was greatly reduced due to last year's intense cold.  We are going to plant a little differently this year and may even add mulch as a protection.  The Greeleys in particular were severely impacted last winter and we lost more than 2/3 of the crop.  Since this is a rare heirloom shallot that we got from a farmer in New Mexico, we have to rebuild our stock. Here's to 2015!

Beds for spring garlic & shallots in Flat Shoals

As the weather chills, the more tender plants need protection.  We have two lettuce beds in the Demo garden that now have PVC hoops to create a mini-high tunnel and we are putting down floating row cover over the frissé and lettuce in Raz House.  And then there are the well pumps to cover, ice machine to winterize and greenhouse irrigation to check, ...  The To Do list gets VERY long when cold weather hits!

Chris & Ray putting a hoop on a Demo Garden bed    Lettuce and endive in Ras House waiting to be covered.

Okay, folks -- we need your help.  We need to find a good indoor home for our cat, Wally.  He is an affectionate and personable cat but because of these qualities, he is always in search of people and crosses the road to find us.  We really don't want him to meet the same fate of his Mom, so we'd like to find a new home for him.  Please send an email or give a call if you are interested.  We think he would do well with other cats- not sure about a dog.  It will be hard to lose him but we'd rather rehome him than have another hit and run victim.

Sir Walter Waly

Don't forget that Saturday, November 29 from 10-4 is our Holiday Market and Open Greenhouse event on Small Business Saturday.  We have partnered with Buffalo Creek Farm and Creamery to promote the event at both of our farms.  At our farm, join BeNutty Bakes and Butters, Greenberries Farm and Truffles NC  and try their wonderful products!  We'll have Holiday mistletoe and greenery, veggies, jams, garlic goodies and more along with Christmas tree cutting, a bonfire for s'mores, refreshments and door prizes! Shop Small, ya'll!

Small Business Saturday Save the Date

Market Update:  

On Saturday, we'll be at Cobblestone Farmers Market at Old Salem (9-12) - just one more regular season market after tomorrow!  What will you find on our tables?  Yes, there's still garlic - smaller quantities -- so get it while you can!  There will be Garlic Powder and Garlic Granules (Spanish Roja, Inchelium Red, Nootka & Music), Culinary garlic -- Elephant, Music, Inchelium Red, Chesnok, German Red, Lorz Italian and Nootka Rose -- and garlic braids.

We'll also have LaRatte Fingerling potatoes as well as the popular Sweet Potatoes (Ginseng, Covington & Sweetie Pie) -- they went FAST last week!  There will be Aji Dulce peppers (the sweet habanero) -- try a taste of our Aji Dulce Sauce -- a zesty and bright Puerto Rican sauce that just begs to go with chicken, beans or pork -- and even chips!  We'll have kits with all the makings and a simple recipe.  We'll also have jalapeños, Sweet Italian Red peppers, and radishes.

Holiday flavors have come to the Jam Department!  Our famous, limited edition Yam's Jam Sweet Potato Butter is back (think sweet potato pie in a jar!  Yummmmmmm!) as well as the tasty Raspberry-Cranberry Jam. 

As a reminder, if there is anything that you would like for us to hold for you at market just let us know by e-mail, by the evening before, and we will be glad to put it aside for you.

Stay warm, tuck in your furry friends, feed the birds, cover those plants and beware of frozen pipes!

Until our next edition,

Cheryl & Ray

Posted 11/7/2014 10:48am by Cheryl Ferguson.

 

Hello Farm Friends!  Happy Friday!

The winds of November are blowing in garlic!  Well, at least blowing in the need for us to get the garlic organized, cracked and ready for planting.  We always try to have it in the ground by Thanksgiving so we have a lot of work left to do. 

When you have nearly 20,000 bulbs at harvest, it takes a lot of organization to keep things straight.  When we harvest garlic, we grade it for size and set aside the largest bulbs for seed.  This week we have been spending a lot of time checking the seed for quality as well as going through what's left of the smaller garlic to determine what we will plant and what can go to market.  It is a very painstaking and slow process.  Lists, paper, markers and tags (and patience) are essential tools in this process (and maybe some tea and a bagel).

Garlic planting planning

It's always a bit sad at this time of year when we are clearing the barns of garlic -- it gets so empty!!  Remember this?

Net full of garlic

Well, it now looks like this:

Net with no garlic

And the barn is empty of all hanging garlic except what we'll be using for braids:

Empty barn loft

A sad -- but necessary -- sign of the season.

Another sign of the season is getting the greenhouse and the hoop house ready for winter.  Since we have the hoop house full of nice, tender plants, we need to make sure that it is as free of drafts as possible since it has no heat source except for the sun.  We closed up the vents in the top of the house to make sure that as much warm air as possible stays in -- so far it's working pretty well!  We still have some tomatoes for market!

Covering the vent in Raz House

Mark your calendar for Saturday, November 29 from 10-4 for our Holiday Open Greenhouse event on Small Business Saturday.  We have partnered with Buffalo Creek Farm and Creamery to promote the event at both of our farms.  There will be vendors at both locations to share their local products for your Holiday giving!  More details next week!

Small Business Saturday Save the Date

Market Update:  

On Saturday, we'll be back at Cobblestone Farmers Market at Old Salem (9-12).  Thanks for your understanding of us not being there last week. What will you find on our tables?  Yes, there's still garlic!  But -- a word of warning -- we are starting to run out of several varieties so you'd better stock up!   There will be Garlic Powder and Garlic Granules (Spanish Roja, Inchelium Red, Nootka & Music), Culinary garlic -- Elephant, Music, Inchelium Red, Chesnok, German Red, Lorz Italian, Bogatyr and Nootka Rose -- and garlic braids.

Those yummy LaRatte Fingerling potatoes will be there in bunches!  And the first of our tasty Sweet Potatoes (Ginseng & Sweetie Pie).  There will be Aji Dulce peppers (the sweet habanero) -- try a taste of our Aji Dulce Sauce -- a zesty and bright Puerto Rican sauce that just begs to go with chicken, beans or pork -- and even chips!  We'll have kits with all the makings and a simple recipe.  We'll even have some Tomatoes, jalapeños , artichokes and swiss chard.  In the Jam Department, we are all stocked up! 

As a reminder, if there is anything that you would like for us to hold for you at market just let us know by e-mail, by the evening before, and we will be glad to put it aside for you.

On Tuesday, please take a moment to remember our veterans and say a word of thanks.  Both Ray and Cheryl's fathers were part of the Greatest Generation, serving their country during World War II.  We owe a huge debt of gratitude to all of our veterans.

Until our next edition,

Cheryl & Ray

Posted 10/31/2014 10:13am by Cheryl Ferguson.

 

Hello Farm Friends!  Happy Friday & Happy Halloween!

Quick Market Update:  We will NOT be at the Cobblestone Old Salem Farmers Market tomorrow due to the predicted stormy conditions.  The weather forecast for the day is quite bleak and although the market will be open as scheduled, we will not be there.  Drippy wet garlic braids and garlic powder paste are not things that we want to sell (and we think you wouldn't want to buy them either!)  We will be back at Old Salem next week (11/8) and through the rest of the market season there (11/22). As a reminder, the King Farmers Market closed for the season on Wednesday.

Rainy fall day


Despite the impending cold, wet blustery conditions, we are looking forward to some rain.  Things are quite crunchy around the farm so we have been irrigating a lot to get our new transplants off to a good start. The bok choy is settling in well!

Bok Choy transplants in Daddy's Garden

The dry weather has been great to get fields ready for fall planting and cover crops.  Ray has been spending lots of time in the tractor(s) seat(s) (we borrow tractors from several relatives to be able to do all of this work). He has been disking, tilling and spreading leaves.  This morning he is off to NC A&T to borrow a bedshaper to make beds for our garlic and shallots.  We'll also use it to prepare a few beds for next spring -- it always helps to have a few beds ready to go in the early spring when it is usually too muddy and wet to work the soil.  Here's a photo of Ray spreading leaves where we will be planting shallots next week.

Sreaking leaves in Flat Shoals

Good news on the strawberry front!  We have almost doubled the number of plants!  The plants that we had from last year (which were rooted from plants that we had 2 years ago) were doing SO well that we decided to go ahead and keep them for 2015.  They are strong and healthy -- and even producing lots of flowers.  We didn't have the heart to till them up so we weeded, fertilized and they are ready to grow even more over the winter.  As you recall, we lost a lot of our plants last winter due to the weather and the deer but many of them recovered and flourished over the summer.  The strawberries are all safely behind an electrified fence and we will probably be getting a field blanket to keep them a bit warmer over the winter.  But feast your eyes on this -- there's even fruit on some of the plants now (and it's tasty!)  Keep your fingers crossed for next year's crop!

Fall strawberry

More next week on plans for upcoming markets and events.  We have lots in store for you!

Hope you have a safe and fun Halloween and Dia de los Muertos. I think it's a great weekend for some winter squash soup, don't you?

Ajo in Poppa Johnnie's apple tree

Until our next edition,

Cheryl & Ray

Posted 10/24/2014 3:38pm by Cheryl Ferguson.

Hello Farm Friends!  Happy Friday!

It's been a plant, harvest and field prep kind of week here on the farm.  All of the potatoes are out of the field -- both the sweet potatoes and the remainder of the fingerlings.  We were pleased with both harvests -- the fingerlings netted around 800 pounds and the sweet potatoes came in at just under 700 pounds.  A respectable harvest!  Unlike "Irish" potatoes, sweet potatoes have to be cured in a warm, humid place in order to develop their sugars so they will taste even better.  It takes about 7-10 days for them to cure.  We put ours in the greenhouse after harvest -- they are now stacked on perforated shelving to make sure air can flow through them.

Ray and Chris harvesting potatoes  Sweet potato in the row  Stacks of sweet potatoes in the greenhouse

Sweet potatoes are still a fairly new crop for us.  Our first year growing them was in 2012 -- very small potatoes and we almost gave up.  We didn't grow them last year but planted a pretty good sized area this year.  We know that sweet potatoes are somewhat of a commodity crop but we are trying to find some extra tasty and sweet ones for you, our special customers. Next week we should have Covington, Ginseng and Sweetie Pie at market.   The main reason we grow sweets is for our "Yam's Jam Sweet Potato Butter."  This year the potatoes are nice and large and will be easier to work with than the little rattail ones from 2012.  This incredibly smooth and tasty treat will be available starting in November -- just in time for the Holidays!!  It's a yummy, not too sweet Sweet Potato Pie in a jar!

We've been busy on the planting front as well.  More kale, chard and onions are now in the ground.  We just planted 804 red and yellow onions today -- these will be ready next spring (nothing like making you wait, huh?)  Our hoop house has been transformed from tomato heaven into a cozy abode for basil, frissé, lettuce -- and yes, we still have tomatoes! The plan is for the frissé to be ready for Holiday sales.

Planting onions in Daddy's Garden

Speaking of Holidays, we are busy making plans for our activities.  Mark your calendar for Saturday, November 29 for our Holiday Open Greenhouse event!  This is Small Business Saturday and we will be partnering with other vendors to join us at this very fun and very local event!  Stay tuned for more information!

Market Update:  

On Saturday, we'll be at Cobblestone Farmers Market at Old Salem (9-12).  This Saturday there will be extra Halloween activity in Old Salem so there's even more to do after market.  Wednesday will be the LAST day of the King Farmers Market season. 

What will you find on our tables?  Yes, there's still garlic!  But -- a word of warning -- we are starting to run out of several varieties so you'd better stock up!   There will be Garlic Powder and Garlic Granules (Spanish Roja & Music), a few bags of Seed Garlic for planting, Culinary garlic -- Elephant, Music, Inchelium Red, Chesnok, German Red, Lorz Italian, and Nootka Rose -- and garlic braids.

Those yummy LaRatte Fingerling potatoes will be there in bunches!  Lots of okra (burgundy and green).  Tomatoes are still on the menu and we have a surprising number of beautiful slicers and some fruit boxes and Matt's Wild Cherry.  There will be Aji Dulce (the sweet habanero) and shishito peppers -- all Certified Organic!  Try a taste of our Aji Dulce Sauce -- it is a zesty and bright Puerto Rican saauce that just begs to go with chicken, beans or pork -- and even chips!  We'll have kits with all the makings and a simple recipe.  We also have a new batch of Basil PestoIn the Jam Department, we are all stocked up! 

As a reminder, if there is anything that you would like for us to hold for you at market just let us know by e-mail, by the evening before, and we will be glad to put it aside for you.

Get out and enjoy the beautiful fall colors this weekend!  Supposed to be gorgeous so head on up towards Hanging Rock and wave as you drive by the farm!!

Autum Maple  Pineapple sage plant

Until our next edition,

Cheryl & Ray

Posted 10/17/2014 10:34am by Cheryl Ferguson.

 

Hello Farm Friends!  Happy Friday!

What a gorgeous morning!  Beautiful sunshine, pleasantly cool -- the perfect fall day.  Hard to believe we had such turbulence earlier in the week.  Tuesday evening we were securing anything that might blow due to forecasts for tornadoes and high winds -- thank goodness those didn't come but we did get nearly 2 inches of rain.  It's nice to have a sunny, calm day. 

Our week has been a hodgepodge of clearing, planting, fertilizing and harvesting.  The strawberries are now in the ground (fortified by a nice sip of fish emulsion as a toddy to get them through the winter).  Kale, bunching onions and leeks have also been planted -- but there are a lot more greens to come!  And more potatoes!

A few photos to share:

Planting strawberries in North   Newly planted kale  Newly planted Kale in Daddy's Garden

   Bunching onions in the Demo Garden 

As many of you know, we have been without a pet cow for 3 years.  Yam, our beloved bovine, was a fixture in the pasture and the official greeter for the Capella Community.  We have been looking for her successor somewhat half-heartedly because we don't really have the time for another bottle baby calf.  But we got a call on Saturday evening from our vet telling us about a calf.  On Sunday, we went up to the Sparks Family Farm just outside Stuart and picked up the tiniest, cutest Angus.  Cheryl decided his name should be "Sparky."  His prognosis wasn't very good -- had been born on Thursday and his mother wasn't really producing milk.  And the weather had been very wet and cold.  But we loaded this limp little guy into a large crate and headed back to the farm.  My cousin had space in his barn and we fixed up a warm, cozy spot.  He eagerly took his first bottle of milk and started showing more energy.  When we checked on him later in the night, he was sleeping peacefully.  The next morning when we went over to feed him, unfortunately he had not made it.  It was very hard to lose him so soon, but Sparky opened up space in our hearts and heads for another calf -- it won't be another 3 years before there is a friendly bovine in the pasture.

Cheryl and Sparky

Market Update:  

On Saturday, we'll be at Cobblestone Farmers Market at Old Salem (9-12).  This Saturday is the Harvest Day:  Pigs and Pippins in Old Salem so it may be extra busy.  On Wednesday, find us at the King Farmers Market at the Stokes Family YMCA (11-1). 

On our tables you'll find lots of garlic!  Garlic Powder and Garlic Granules (Spanish Roja & Music), bags of Seed Garlic for planting, Culinary garlic -- Elephant, Music, Inchelium Red, Chesnok, German Red, and Lorz Italian -- and garlic braids.

Those yummy LaRatte Fingerling potatoes will be there in bunches!  Lots of okra (burgundy and green).  The tomatoes are still on the menu but in much smaller quantity!  There will be Aji Dulce (the sweet habanero) and shishito peppers, as well as swiss chard and eggplant (small amounts) -- all Certified Organic!  We also have a new batch of Basil PestoIn the Jam Department, we are all stocked up! 

As a reminder, if there is anything that you would like for us to hold for you at market just let us know by e-mail, by the evening before, and we will be glad to put it aside for you.

Here's wishing you a wonderful Sweetest Day tomorrow.  It's a day for you to recognize a sweet and special someone. It doesn’t matter who that person is, or what their relation is to you. They just have to be "sweet" in order to get a little recognition.

Until our next edition,

Cheryl & Ray

Posted 10/10/2014 12:02pm by Cheryl Ferguson.

Hello Farm Friends!  Happy Friday!

Beautiful day on the farm!  Sunny, pleasant breeze -- sounds like a great day to harvest potatoes!  Yes! We are harvesting some of our LaRatte fingerling potatoes today.  They are coming out a bit early because Ray noticed some late blight last week.  In just a week's time, it appears that the blight has spread from a small section to nearly 2/3 of the field.  In the case of late blight, the potatoes aren't infected (nor is there any change in their taste) but the leaves -- which are the sugar factories that enable tuber growth -- die off quickly.  There's really no advantage to leaving them in the ground so we'll get out most of them today (and will have them at market tomorrow!)

LaRatte Fingerling Potatoes

Progress is being made for the 2015 Strawberry Field -- the holes are burned in the fabric, straw has been rolled out in the aisles and some planting has begun.  By close of day on Monday, 2000+ strawberry plants will be in the ground!  Here's Jen, Chris & Elliot rolling out the bale:

Rolling out the straw bale in the strawberries

As autumn settles in, deer are starting to become more curious about what's on the buffet line here at Plum Granny Farm.  The strawberries, beans and sweet potatoes are nicely protected behind an electrified fence but there are several other plantings that don't have that protection.  Last night it appears that the sweet potatoes in the demo garden were on the evening's menu:

Deer damage to sweet potato leaves

 

Market Update:  

On Saturday, we'll be at Cobblestone Farmers Market at Old Salem (9-12).  On Wednesday, find us at the King Farmers Market at the Stokes Family YMCA (11-1).  What will you find on our tables? Garlic in all forms!  Last week we had the first batch of our beautiful garlic braids available -- there will be more this week!  Wouldn't one of these decorative and functional braids look great in your kitchen?  And they make great gifts too -- special orders are available!  There are 10 bulbs of delicious Nootka Rose garlic in each braid.  Nootka Rose is Cheryl's favorite roaster and they are VERY long-lasting.

Garlic braid

We'll also have the first of our varietal Garlic Powder and Garlic Granules (Spanish Roja & Music) and bags of Music Seed Garlic for planting.  Culinary garlic will be on the table as well -- Elephant, Music, Inchelium Red, Chesnok, Purple Italian (Last Week!), and Lorz Italian.

The tomatoes are still on the menu but in much smaller quantity!  We'll also have those delicious Striped Romans, heirloom slicers, saladette tomatoes, and pints of Red Pearl grape tomatoes.  Just a few more snap green beans (Rattlesnake Pole)!  There will be Aji Dulce (the sweet habanero) and shishito peppers, and okra (green & burgundy), and those yummy LaRatte fingerling potatoes -- all Certified Organic!  In the Jam Department, we are all stocked up! 

As a reminder, if there is anything that you would like for us to hold for you at market just let us know by e-mail, by the evening before, and we will be glad to put it aside for you.

And since so many of you like to see our crazy cats -- here's another picture.  I like to call this "Ajo Squared."

Ajo in the garlic leaves

Until our next edition,

Cheryl & Ray

USDA Organic logo

Certfied Organic by QCS since 2010

Watch Us!

Ray talks ginger with Lisa

Check out the terrific feature that Flavor, NC did on Plum Granny Farm!  You can view the episode at http://video.unctv.org/video/2365069548/  They did a great job showing our garlic, ginger & berry production - plus a few other surprises! We are paired with Chef Jay from Lucky 32 Southern Kitchen who makes some wonderful garlic recipes!  Enjoy!

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