Wow, here we are in the new year, 2018! The Christmas holiday went screaming by in a blur but it is great to get started on the new year when there are so many possibilities and ideas just waiting to come to life. Last year was a rough year with so many challenges but we have put it in the rear-view mirror and are focusing on this year being a super great year. Last season we let this website and blog go kind of dormant but we are aiming to fix that this year. We are going to TRY and post a weekly update here called a " A Day in the Life on the Farm" It is sort of a review of what's happening here on any given day or week. It will be including what is awesome and working, what we are growing and also what isn't working, a failure or a problem. We know we can get a distorted view of life and particularly flower farming when viewed through social media lens. So our aim is to keep it real. So hopefully we can keep this up for the season.
Every year we try and find a word or phrase that we can think about and work toward. In the past we had focus, joy, and gratitude as our choices for the year. This year's word is "BALANCE" with an addition of "Get er' Done". Farmer Tony uses that all the time!(shades of "Larry the Cable Guy") Balance is key for us this year. Farming can be a year round 24/7 proposition that can consume every moment of your life and at this stage in the game, we need to have more balance, more life outside of farming. Not necessarily leaving the farm but doing other things that we enjoy occasionally. Balance is what we are striving for this year.
As you can see from our header photo we are starting to have blooming anemones! We are excited about the possibility of having early anemones and closing the gap on the end of flowers in the late Fall and the beginning of flowers in the very early Spring. The day after the Winter Solstice is the beginning of Spring for us. We know that with them beginning to bloom in the next few weeks that we will have anemones for Valentine's Day and hopefully tulips too. This is always great way to begin the season!
We planted another 1000 parrot tulips this week. These are the pre-cooled 5 degree programmed tulips that we receive every other week. We have 2000 more bulbs to come this month and then all our tulips will be planted for the 2018 season.
We are changing out our plant stand lights this week. Regular fluorescent lights are getting more expensive to use as grow lights and quality fixtures are getting more expensive, so we are biting the bullet and changing to LED grow lights. Maybe our lisianthus will grow faster under these strangely colored lights. The top row of trays are filled with lisianthus. We started them in week 50. Our trick for good germination is to seed them, placed on a watered capillary mat with a humidity dome and place them in our cool dark root cellar for 10 days. The temps in there stay at a constant 55 degrees. After 10 days we bring them into our basement and under lights and they begin germinating in about 10-14 days. Those trays are showing the seed pellets cracking when looked at under a magnifying glass.
The list for seeding this week is more lisianthus, foxglove, campanula, ammi,and veronica. They are all going into the little 3/4 inch mini blocks. Plant stand space and greenhouse space is at a premium so these mini blocks are super for sowing with many potential plants. We will be soil blocking 2 inch blocks for sweet peas , which is on tap for Sunday week 2.
We got our King's Mums order in this week. So hard to believe you need to order now for flowers in October. We have about 120 additional little mum cuttings coming this year on top of the plants we overwintered this year. The mums were so well received last Fall that we are expanding it a bit more this year.
Finally we needed to update some photos of us, create a video trailer for our YouTube channel and worked on other social media promotion stuff. It is always fun and tricky to be behind the camera and in front of it! Many takes and photo shots were made before we had something usable. So here are the faces of Bare Mtn Farm. Fourteen years done and here we are again at the beginning of a new season, a new year with new plans. Thank you for your continuing support and encouragement.
So let's meet back here next time and we will catch up with what's happening on the farm. See you then!