Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Plant Care

Basic Plant Care for your Earth Day transplants!

Make sure to give them proper lighting and water.  Set your plant on your window sill and make sure the soil is kept moist.  Give it enough water so water starts to drip from the bottom of the pot.

Put a saucer under your pot to retain water and to avoid water leaking on the window sill or worse your laptop.  Be sure not to leave the plants in standing water more than 30 minutes! No drowning of the plants:)

Make sure to keep your transplant away from any radiator or cold drafts.  Be aware that keeping your window open at night could expose your plant to unfavorable conditions.  They don't like the cold or the wind! Exposure to warm air from the radiator could easily dry out your plant.

Believe it or not you will be heading home for the summer in a few weeks.  You will want to give your plant a new home.  You have some options.  You could transplant it into a bigger pot keeping it on your deck or transplant it into your yard.  Either way you will need to put your plant outside in a shady spot that is protected from the wind for a week prior to putting in the direct sun.  Continue to water it.  This will acclimate the plant to growing outdoors.

Now its ready to be placed on your deck or in your yard.  Pick a spot that gets lots of sun.....

.....So your plant looks like this

...........and not like this :) (Over exaggerating, but hey whatever gets the point across)

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Crafty Signs @ Spring Valley Student Farm

We built the herb spiral this past summer using rocks from the field.  Being in New England finding rocks in the field is obnoxiously common.  With so many rocks we decided to get crafty.  Here is one of our solutions!  Rock herb spiral. Yay!

Now the landscape is dotted with some nice hand painted signs 
Asparagus in the spring.  Fairly unrecognizable but give it a few more months and it will be on full display.

More fun with photo merge in photoshop.  Our composting system at work.  The start of spring will provide us with more green material for the compost.  Right now the composition of the compost consists mostly of brown material.   

Monday, April 15, 2013

Tuesday Shuttle, April 9th

April 9th was a productive day at the farm, as we had many volunteers from EcoHouse show up to help us out! A big thanks to everyone who came that day (and to anyone who comes on anyday!), you really are such a huge help to us. There is so much more that can be done with many hands!

Baby leeks peek out of the soil in the greenhouse! These are almost ready to be transplanted in the hoophouse now. 
Sienna aka RopeMaster shows off her knotting skills, helping us to put up a trellis for the peas made out of recycled twine. 

Awesome Abby! Abby helped out in the hoophouse to spread leaf litter between kale rows and also harvest some kale for Chuck and Augie's! 

Action shot: Jen watering! Look at them watering skills.

Asian greens mix..... my favorite! The mustard greens are actually very spicy. 

The hose was uncooperative when we first set it up this season. Luckily the warmer temperatures have stopped the water from freezing or forming bubbles and the water pressure has been better since then :)


Landscape Photography

Imagery of Spring Valley Farm that is part of a series of landscape photos I took for my intro photography class.  The snow has melted and the plots are ready to be planted.  The ephemeral landscape of the farm is quite amazing.  In a few months, hard work and warmer weather will change it into a productive landscape.  Something to remember and to document through photography when the time comes.     

Early morning, soon after the sunrise

Forest line thinning on the edges
Signs of growth in the hoop house! With the trees watching its back.

Hey Garlic! Perk Up!

Kale among the leaves.  Of course the leaves serving as a weed suppressant 
Spinach and theasian greens mix is flowering!!
Lettuce acclimating to growing in the hoop house
Garlic! Yayy!!!
Microgreens and onions (the green lines that are hard to make out :)

Flowers for Spring Fling
And our greenhouse is in full production mode.  Go us!!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Terrific Terrariums!

Spring is here! And to celebrate, Spring Valley and EcoHouse took a trip to Logee's Greenhouses in Danielson, CT to check out their selection of rare and amazing plants! The trip was organized by Spring Valley farmers, Lina & Tanya as part of their presentation to EcoHousers on how to make your own terrariums. Students took the opportunity at Logee's to load up on plants to put in their terrariums and to be transported for a day into a tropical rain forest.

Part 3 of Lina & Tanya's presentation included a trip back to Spring Valley farm to assemble our terrariums! 

Necessary supplies included:
  • recycled commercial sized pickle jars donated by various dining halls on campus
  • soil, sand, and pebbles for proper drainage
  • plants!

Assembly was pretty simple, layer the pebbles and sand in the jar, put in the plants, add soil and enjoy!
EcoHouse Volunteers Sienna and Abby building their terrariums

~Laura :)