The Baby is Here, Farm Update and More!

Cooper asleep, one of the things he can be good at, at times

Cooper Patrick Alexander rapped in a white blanket with frogs, snails, bugs and other critters onitOn Thursday, April 6th at 12:54 in the morning we welcomed our baby earthside.  Our baby boy weighed 8 lbs and 5 ounces at birth and was 21 inches long from his adorably kissable head to his long monkey toes.  His name is Cooper Patrick Alexander and now just days old he is already running the show.  Many thanks to everyone who has showered us with gifts and food and support and help.  We are so grateful for our community of support.  Our “village” is already played a huge part in raising this child. 

Even with a newborn baby on the scene, farm work must go on.  May and the beginning of the CSA season is fast approaching.  Even though the start of the CSA is still a few weeks away, Patrick will be at the Farmers Market throughout April selling our earliest produce, raw honey, pasture raised eggs, and goat meat.  Spring crops are growing by leaps and bounds as the days continue to get longer and the weather warmer. 

Sarah Laves and Patrick Gridley planting lettuce with row cover onthe leftThis year we succeeded in covering nearly all our spring crops in floating row cover to protect them from the dry and roaring south winds of March that turn our soil into concrete.  The row cover also keeps the soil soft, friable and moist.  The result is that the spring garden is wrapped up like a present.  We have to peek under all the wrappers to see how our plants are growing and check for pest damage or disease problems.  The fire ants also like it under the row cover, but I guess we just have to live with that. 

Josephine holding up a hail stone that is alomst baseball sizeMarch was in like a lion and out like a lion.  No gentle lambs here.  We were lucky enough to get two hail storms last month.  While the first one left us without any damage, the second was another story.  It swiss-cheesed all our floating row cover, punched zillions of hole in the silage tarps we use to cover the beds, and peppered the high tunnel plastic which will need to be replaced before winter.  The hail tore up some leafy greens and even squashed whole plants where it made a direct hit.  Still, it could have been much worse.  Where the hail was the worst, just a mile or so away, it was breaking car windows!   

Sevenbeds finished and mulched with bio plastic just before darkWe farm at the mercy of the weather and the rain has been relentless all winter and spring.  The field finally dried out enough for some marathon tractor work over the weekend and all day Monday.  The team finished just as darkness was falling Monday night and ahead of Tuesday’s rain.  Now we can start planting all our “summer season” crops.  Kudos to Randy for pulling out all the stops to get all that work done while battling new-dad fatigue!