Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Still Doing It

"Well, I've moved into the jungle of the agriculture rumble to grow my own food. And I'll dig and plough and scrape the weeds till I succeed in seeing cabbage growing through. Now I'm a farmer, and I'm digging, digging, digging, digging, digging. Now I'm a farmer, and I'm digging, digging, digging, digging, digging".

First things first. Apologies for falling so far behind in keeping this current. Despite the fact that as of the date of this posting the farming season is close to the end, this and future posts will be presented in chronological order.

At the end of August there were some changes. Malaika, Emma, Patrick set off for college and Emily returned to high school. Their efforts, energy, humor, and presence will be missed. Replacing them on a full time basis is Mike. Jose has also joined the Gravity Hill cast and crew on a part time basis. A big welcome to both.

While a picture of Mike and Jose can be found on the official Gravity Hill website, the following picture of Mike with Valerie and David conveys the notion that it is not only postal workers for whom neither rain, nor sleet, nor gloom of night will prevent the execution of their duties.

The following pictures are intended to give a partial sense of the ongoing process of seeding, planting, and growing. At this writing it is towards the end of October and some new planting has recently been done. However, new seeding has come to an end and nothing more will be planted. But, sit back and enjoy the scenes of summer growing.

This picture is from inside the greenhouse and you have a sense of different stages of development of various plants.

This is a picture of some plants that have 'grown up'. In short order they will be moved to the tables just outside the greenhouse. There they will be exposed to the elements so as to toughen them up in preparation of going into the ground.
This shows plants in the ground. Notice how 'clean' it is between the rows of plants. This means that Farmer David and his merry band of helpers have spent innumerable hours weeding. Let's be clear, weeding is not for the faint of heart. It is hard, time consuming, and tiresome. And during the fullness of summer done in very hot weather. Only mad dogs and farmers go out in the noon day sun.

Another picture showing the plants in the field. Some are 'out in the open', some, as shown in previous posts are protected by the white fabric that is seen in this picture. The fabric protects the plants from bugs and from the direct sun.

The plastic in this picture is intended to suppress some, operative word being 'some', of the weeds. In traditional farming pesticides and other chemicals are used to prevent bugs, weeds, and diseases. And guess what you get to put into your body when eating foods grown this way? Anyway, in organic farming you do what you can to minimize loss due to bugs, weeds, and disease. Your body will thank you.

In the October 13, 2008 issue of Newsweek magazine there was an article entitled, Best Organics for the Buck. The following link should take you to the article.
The article is brief. It does a nice job of conveying which foods people's best interests would be served by buying organically. Two websites are included that show analysis of tests done on conventionally grown produce. The information conveys which produce has high levels of pesticides (cranberries, nectarines, peaches, strawberries, sweet bell peppers, celery, cucumbers, tomatoes, among others) and those that have less (bananas, citrus fruits, pineapple among others). The two websites are organic-center.org and ewg.org.

For now, happy and healthy eating.

1 comment:

Bea said...

I'm not sure about bananas-- aerial spraying is very bad in many countries (including my own) and gives many people over a wide range-- those not even on the farm-- health problems.