Farm Stand Almost Done

I’m feeling pretty good about where things are at this week after last week’s aggravations. Seems like our electric fence is keeping out raccoons and those high-season crops are actually ripening (thanks to 85+ degree heat). It’s tough when you keep slogging through all that work and the plants don’t holding up their end of the bargain; I’ve cultivated, weeded, and trellised tomatoes, but the tomato plants are just giving me green fruit.

One project we’ve made significant progress on is the farm stand which we plan on setting up later this year at the end of our driveway. My father-in-law is a carpenter and he helped me do the framing this past weekend. Our concept is to make it an honest-to-goodness farm stand which makes for a good customer experience. Sometimes people just set up a card table with a couple of coolers or a Menards-built utility shed and try to pawn that off as a farm stand; it just doesn’t do it for me. What we’re building is a 10×6-foot lean-to structure made of recycled barn wood…something that really looks like a farm stand. I keep picturing it spilling over with fall crops this September, so much produce that extra bushel baskets overflow onto the grass…nice sight, eh?. It’s one of those projects you dream up without any sense that you’d ever get to it, but I’m excited it’s actually becoming reality!

The garden work is also in a good place or going according to schedule. We’ve just planted the last seeds for the year like salad mix and radishes. This should give them enough time to get into the boxes by the end of the season as long as we get some germination in this heat. Last night we set the kids up in the van to play (they really like playing in cars) while Mar and I pulled all the garlic out of the ground til nightfall—it’s always a good feeling to be heading to the house at dusk after finishing a job. Also we almost have all the mulch down in between the tomatoes, eggplant, and peppers.

It feels good to be mostly “on schedule” at this point because we’ll be hitting the high harvest period as the tomatoes, peppers, corn, and such come in. We end up in a blurry non-stop picking routine from now until mid-September, which makes it tough to get to anything else. Still, other big project await, like pulling all the onions to cure and putting tilling ground for this fall’s cover crops.

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