Monday, January 26, 2015

Delayed part II

Welcome back to another episode of Lost in the Farmer’s Market. As promised this week has a double post and this post is the second of the two. If you checked out our last post you would know that the double post is due to the semester starting and for at least the first week my schedule being thrown into pure chaos.With that said we promised you a look at the test garden labs and what we are doing to keep the local food train rolling all winter long.

The crops for sale and the most delicate plants are protected with a plastic sheet and grow under a fluorescent grow lamp to compensate for any lost lumen hours..
So this is the 'wind proof' area, it's purpose is to shelter the more delicate plants, while allowing them them the maximum amount of lumen hours so their growth is not stunted. As I always say, it is the drying effect of wind that causes the worst frost damage.

It's worse then that he's dead jim!

This is what I call an effective crop loss. All of these Japanese Red Giant Mustard plants were outside when the temperature dropped to 14 degrees for that one night about two weeks ago, and most of them are still alive. Unfortunately I cant bring them inside due to limited space so I brought in just a limited few and all of the lettuce and radicchio.

The radicchio seems oblivious to having been frozen or frost while the lettuce looks like hell but is recovering.

Much to my surprise on that 14 degree night all of the radicchio and lettuce froze solid, but the radicchio thawed and kept on as though nothing happened while the lettuce lost most of it's leaves and got a nasty aphid infestation. So I fertilized all of these guys last week, cut off all the dead stuff and used insecticidal soap to hose down the lettuce and just yesterday when I took this picture they seem to be recovering (lettuce) just fine.

These Red Giant Mustard plants were untouched by the cold and were brought in.
To the left of the plastic tarp in the earlier section you have two of the three intact red giant mustard plants. The third was left outside due to a fire ant infestation. In front of the Mustard plants is a semi-hardy type of ice plant and a Cuban oregano. In the two pots to the right are a pair of Collard plants.

Below the plastic bench are two more pots!
These two pots once contained Red Giant Mustard Plants but the cold killed the prior occupants and so I replanted with two surplus Savoy Cabbage Plants. This of this as a means to have a later harvest, they are positioned under the grow lamp to give them a bit of a boost. But finally we have the last picture, of the one plant that scoffed at the cold and refers to the winter as a "Frigid Wuss!"

Oh snap! Winter got called out by the Pansies!

Wow....winter, you got punked by a bunch of pansies, if that was me I'd be too humiliated to go on and would let spring take over.  That right there is super cold, but true. That is right folks despite the name pansies are tough little cold season annuals and can withstand being completely frozen plus they are edible, the flowers can go into salad. So yes your garden can keep going cold or no and this brings us to the end of a fill-in episode of Lost in the Farmer's Market. Considering the snowy eather we are soon to have in certain parts of the east coast please everyone think rationally and if you are in a area about to be hit; please drive safely. 

Thank you for reading and remember, I am at the Fayetteville City Market barring wet weather on Saturdays between 9:00 am - 1:00pm which is located at 325 Franklin Street in downtown Fayetteville in the front parking lot of the Fayetteville Transportation Museum.

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