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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

Posted 10/3/2014 8:52am by Cheryl Ferguson.

Hello Farm Friends!  Happy Friday!

As it dawns on us that there are less than 3 months left to the calendar year, we are rushing to get many things done before the first frost!!  Things are starting to change in the fields as we transition from summer to fall/winter crops.  One of the biggest changes is that most of the tomato plants have been taken down and the t-posts and trellis lines have been removed -- the field looks so much different now!  As part of our field sanitation and insect /disease control, we burn much of the residue from the field.  This helps make sure that bad bugs don't have a cozy home to hang out over the winter.  We move the cuttings to a burn pile away from other fields and structures and light it.  Since the residue on the pile was dry, the pile burned quite quickly.

Ray burning plant residue

Preparations for the 2015 Strawberry Field are coming along nicely.  We hope to finish covering the beds today and rolling out the hay.  Once again we are using landscape fabric -- a nice thing about the fabric is that we can reuse it for several years in different crops.  Here are a couple of shots of the progress:

 Ray shaping beds with the Cub         Beds for strawberries covered in plastic

Lots of other things going on -- we were contacted by TWC News (formerly News 14 Carolina) for an interview on the availability of funding for organic certification.  So yesterday, Cheryl showed the reporter around the farm (in the fog) and did a brief on-camera interview -- hopefully no equipment was broken in that event!

Next Tuesday (10/7), Cheryl & Ray will be doing a workshop on "Growing Great Garlic at Home" at Reynolda Gardens.  It will be from 7-8 p.m. in the Education Wing.  There is a $5 fee unless you are a Friend of the Gardens or are Wake Forest University faculty, staff or student.  Come on out and learn about growing garlic at home!

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? Old Salem market customers -- this will be the last week for our roaster and Sweet Italian Roasting Peppers.  Just follow your nose to our purple tent!  Samples too!

And tomatoes are still on the menu!  Our feature this week is the Mini Orange tomato. A great salad size tomato!  We'll also have those delicious Striped Romans, heirloom slicers, quart boxes of tasty saladette tomatoes, and pints of Red Pearl and mixed fruit tomatoes.  Just a few more snap green beans (Rattlesnake Pole)!  The first of the Garlic Braids will appear!  As usual, there will be lots of garlic -- Elephant, Music, Inchelium Red, Chesnok, Purple Italian, and Lorz Italian -- as well as Aji Dulce (the sweet habanero) and shishito peppers, swiss chard (small amount) and okra (green & burgundy) -- all Certified Organic!  And if you want to try the Garlic Scape Pesto -- this will be the last week (until next year)!  In the Jam Department, we are all stocked up! 

And don't forget our certified organic strawberry plants.  Chandler and Sweet Charlie are available in 4-packs -- this will be the last week.

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 just because..... here's a picture of our ever-photogenic boys......

Cats on the pump cover

Until our next edition,

Cheryl & Ray

Posted 9/26/2014 3:58pm by Cheryl Ferguson.

 

Hello Farm Friends!  Happy Friday!

The Equinox is behind us and we are now steadily moving into Fall.  And what a bracing start it's been!  We have been scrambling to dig out the sweatshirts and jackets as the morning temps have hovered in the mid-50s (and never crawled much beyond 65 several days!).  But I am sure we will have more balmy, sunny days ahead -- those beautiful days of Indian Summer!

It is interesting to notice how things change though during the course of a year if you pay attention.  Earlier in the summer, the morning air was filled with a chorus of bird songs -- an entire symphony of bird music from sparrows, cardinals, finches, mockingbirds and more.  It is much quieter now.  As the birds ready themselves for migration and winter, I suppose they have less time for song.

We've also been busying ourselves with winter prep as we work on raised beds for kale, lettuce, onions and chard.  Here are some photos showing the rolling out of the plastic for the beds, covering the edges of the fabric with the Cub and the final shot -- these nice beds in Daddy's Garden are all ready for planting!

 

Rolling out the plastic cover in Daddy's Garden  Covering the edges of the fabric wiht the Cub    All ready for planting

Today was a special day at the farm.  We were asked by Rabbi Mark Strauss-Cohn of Temple Emanuel to host the congregation's second day of Rosh Hashanah.  This is the Year of Shmita/Release and Sabbatical and they wanted to spend some time on a farm to learn how we care for the earth and the importance of letting the land heal.  We had a wonderful ceremony at the lower pond and we finished the day picking muscadine grapes and planting radishes.  Thank you so much for your visit, Temple Emanuel!  Happy New Year!

 

Temple Emanuel members planting radishes in the demo garden 

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? Old Salem market customers -- we'll be back with our roaster and Sweet Italian Roasting Peppers and we will roast them for you on-site for FREE!  Just follow your nose to our purple tent!  Samples too!

Yes!  We still have tomatoes!  The 500+ pound harvests are a memory but we will have LOTS of 'em at market!  We'll be bringing back the heirloom Valencia tomato as our feature this week. A beautiful tomato with a great taste!

Valencia tomatoes

We'll also have those delicious Striped Romans, heirloom slicers, quart boxes of tasty saladette tomatoes, and pints of Red Pearl and mixed fruit tomatoes.  We were able to get a few more snap green beans (Rattlesnake Pole)!  As usual, there will be lots of garlic -- Elephant, Music, Inchelium Red, Chesnok, Spanish Roja (last week!), and Lorz Italian -- as well as Aji Dulce (the sweet habanero) and shishito peppers, and okra (green & burgundy), -- all Certified Organic!  And better hurry to get your Garlic Scape Pesto -- this will likely be the last week!  In the Jam Department, we are all stocked up! 

And don't forget our certified organic strawberry plants.  Chandler and Sweet Charlie are available in 4-packs -- fall is strawberry planting time!

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.

Saturday is Johnny Appleseed Day.  The day honors one of America's great legends -- a real person born on September 26, 1774. John Chapman was captivated by the movement west and as traveled, he planted apple trees along the way, and sold trees to settlers. With every apple tree that was planted, the legend grew.

Until our next edition,

Cheryl & Ray

Posted 9/19/2014 10:03am by Cheryl Ferguson.

 

 

Ahoy Mateys!  Happy Friday!

Yes, it's National Talk Like a Pirate Day and we jes' couldn't help but getting in on the fun.

Avast!  This morning we are quite confused (pirates can be, you know!).  Weather.com and Accu-Weather both say that it is not raining....but it is pouring.  I've heard of heavy fog, but this is ridiculous! Arrr!

There is a touch of fall in the air and with Equinox on Monday, we are starting to sense the days getting shorter.  The dogwoods are telling us that we don't need to look at a calendar to know the same thing...

Red dogwood tree berries

We took advantage of a cool, moist morning yesterday to spend time in the potatoes to get them thoroughly weeded and cultivated.  Wow, they are looking good!

Ray and Chris working on the potatoes  Freshly cultivated potato field  Baby LaRatte potatoes  Potato flower

This coming week we'll start planting more of our fall crops (onions, kale, swiss chard, lettuce, beets and more) and get the beds shaped and covered for strawberries.  Ray spread leaves this week for the new strawberry field.  Those little plants will be tucked in the ground in soon!

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? Old Salem market customers can look forward to sampling freshly roasted peppers this week!  Our sweet Italian Roasting Peppers will be available and we will roast them for you on-site for FREE!  The delicious aroma will waft throughout the market -- so just follow your nose to our purple tent!

Chile roaster

Even though many of our colleagues have pulled out their tomato plants, we still have LOTS of 'em!  We'll be featuring the beautiful and fruity Blush tomato.  This was the 3rd place tie in the Winston-Salem Journal Tomato Tasting this summer and is a real treat.  Come have a taste of one of our new favorites!

Blush tomatoes

We'll also have those delicious Striped Roman and Valencias, heirloom slicers, quart boxes of tasty saladette tomatoes, and pints of Red Pearl and Suzanne.  This will be the last week for snap green beans (Jade & Rattlesnake Pole) and French filet-type beans (Coban & Tavera).  There will be as usual lots of garlic -- Elephant, Music, Inchelium Red, Chesnok, Spanish Roja (last week!), and Lorz Italian -- as well as Aji Dulce (the sweet habanero) and shishito peppers, okra (green & burgundy), and garlic chives (small amount) -- all Certified Organic!  Our delicious Garlic Scape Pesto was a hit last week and it will be back.  In the Jam Department, we are all stocked up!  Aye, aye!

And don't forget our certified organic strawberry plants.  Chandler and Sweet Charlie are available in 4-packs -- fall is strawberry planting time!

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 the Autumn Equinox at 10:29 p.m. on Monday!

Arrr! That's it, Mateys!  Until our next edition,

Cheryl & Ray

Posted 9/12/2014 1:42pm by Cheryl Ferguson.

 

Happy Friday, Farm Friends!

Oh the weather!  Cool days, warm days, hot days -- we seem to be in that crazy and variable weather cycle.  No impact yet on our plants -- our summer plants are still doing great.  The peppers are really starting to come in like gangbusters! Shishitos, Aji Dulce and sweet Italian roasters are beginning to fill the walk-in.  Speaking of shishitos, 585 pint bags of them went to our friends at The Produce Box this week!  Here we are putting the finishing touches on the order:

 Pcking bags of shishitos

And speaking of peppers, our Old Salem market customers can look forward to sampling freshly roasted peppers NEXT week at market!

It's strawberry planting time!  We picked up our order of 2,000 strawberry plants at Cottle's Strawberry Nursery in Faison on Tuesday and they are resting comfortably in the greenhouse while we get the field ready for them.  We will have our certified organic strawberry plants at market this week that we grew from tips from our own plants.  Chandler and Sweet Charlie are available in 4-packs -- fall is planting time!

Strawberry plant

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?  Tomatoes will still be there in force!  We'll be featuring the unusual and beautiful (and tasty!!) Striped Roman tomato.  Come have a taste of one of our favorites -- it does double duty as a sauce tomato and it works in sandwiches too

Striped Roman tomatoes

We'll also have heirloom slicers, quart boxes of tasty saladette tomatoes, "fruit" boxes, pints of Red Pearl and Suzanne and the beautiful "Blush" tomato.  Plus we'll have snap green beans (Jade & Rattlesnake Pole) and French filet-type beans (Coban & Tavera), lots of garlic (Elephant, Music, Inchelium Red, Chesnok, Spanish Roja, and Lorz Italian), Aji Dulce peppers (the sweet habanero), okra (green & burgundy), and swiss chard (small amount) -- all Certified Organic!  New this week is our delicious Garlic Scape Pesto and we'll have our regular basil pesto as well.  In the Jam Department, we are rebuilding our supply and have the Raspberry-Chipotle Chile Jam and Raspberry-Chipotle Mole Sauce back in stock!

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

Come Visit Us on Small Business Saturday!

Mark your calendar for Saturday, November 29 from 10-4 for our Holiday Open Greenhouse!  It's our celebration for Small Business Saturday! Join our fellow farmers and producers, BeNutty Bakes & Butters, Truffles NC and Greenberries Farm for a delightful opportunity to finish your Holiday shopping -- LOCALLY! For more information, click here.

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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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