Monday, March 22, 2010

The Hoop House is Up!

Drum Roll, please....we have plastic! The weather cooperated this weekend and we were able to stretch and secure the plastic on our 16' x 96' hoop house. Much thanks to our neighbor, Douglas Madaras, builder extraordinaire, who spent a few days here over the past two weeks and my father, Merlin, who helped dismantle this in the fall and re-set it this spring. It's not 100% complete but is very close. I'm going to go to the Habitat Store today to look for some screen doors to add and we need to put up some aluminum along the bottom foot to keep out the air (or plastic) but other than that, we're in business. Dave even got in there yesterday with the tiller. I'll set out some tomato plants in mid-April and will be planting some cold weather plants in there soon.

By the way - planting in the field will be going on this week and next. If anyone has time during the day and wants to get into the dirt, let me know. I'll be out there working.

Here are some photos of the peppers and tomatoes that have now been transplanted into 3" pots. Many more to plant - tomatoes, eggplant, flowers, etc.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Genetically Modified Food

OK - so they said it would solve hunger world-wide. We'd be able to grow more, more effeciently, with less inputs. The FDA would protect us, right? Unbelievable.

Dave and I attended the Michigan Organic Food and Farm Alliance Conference yesterday and heard from Jeffrey Smith, author of "Seeds of Deception" and "Genetic Roulette" among other books. I can't spend a lot of time writing right now but, suffice it to say, GMO is bad. It causes: 1. 55% mortality rate in fetal rats, 2. Dramatic increases in allergy rates, 3. Blue balls in rats. The gene is passed through the food to your intestinal tract. It continues to survive there.

Will write more later but, please please please, try to buy non-GMO food. This relates to corn, soy, even sugar. Ask the manager at the store if they can stock n0n-GMO food. Buy organic, if you can, as GMOs are prohibited in organic growing.

If we can get 5% of the nation to do this, maybe we can be successful with getting the producers to notice that this is an important point to consider. Europe did it - they now have labeling and GMOs are not allowed. We can do it too!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

2010 Veggie List

Hello all - I've updated the vegetable list on the website. These are the seeds that have arrived thus far. I know there will be a few others - like some Cherokee Trail of Tears Black Beans (an ARK variety) and another variety of onions and lettuce.

We haven't made any progress on the hoop house. Not surprisingly, with the snow last week, no one volunteered to come over. I don't think we could have gone out there anyway. Maybe we could try to work on the hoop house Sunday, March 14. Let me know if you're available.

This weekend is the Michigan Organic Food and Farm Alliance Conference. Dave and I will both attend on Saturday - should be a good one.

Yesterday was the Local Food Summit at the School of Natural Resources in Ann Arbor. What an excellent event filled with so many local farmers and community members committed to promoting local food. Here's an excerpt from an article from Ann

"The Local Food Summit continues today in the Dana Building on campus, where the discussions that started last night will continue in breakout sessions and committees. The goal of this summit is to work toward The 10% Campaign - a push to increase the percentage of locally-grown food in Washtenaw County. Today, county residents source less than 1 percent of the food they eat locally, but organizers hope that their efforts will be able to increase that to 10 percent, resulting in over $90 million “in new direct economic activity.”"