Monday, April 11, 2011

Keep On Growing

Most of the germinating seeds in the greenhouse continue to do well. In fact, lettuce and spinach that was seeded on 3/22 has been moved outside to 'toughen' up in preparation for being planted in the field. (Pictures of these plants will be posted in a couple of days.) The plan is to start planting in about two weeks. A break in the rain would be a very good thing. Will all friends of Z Food Farm please hope for the best. In addition to the excitement of moving the lettuce and spinach outside, there are two other bits of exciting news. The first is that the hops that were ordered have arrived! Yay hops! The other is that the second round of seeding has started. The next seeding of lettuce, Swiss Chard, and broccoli has been done. This process of seeding, germinating, moving outside, and planting will be continued throughout the season. In the next few weeks the pace of events will speed up. Greg and Oscar, while not back to work full time, have been integral parts of the ongoing process of getting things at the farm up and running and their efforts as things move forward are essential to the success of Z Food Farm. This is a very exciting, and anxious, time of the year. Actually, the entire season is full of excitement and anxiety:-)

The following pictures were taken a week ago. Compare them with pictures from the previous post to get a sense of how quickly things grow. Within the next couple of days more recent 'baby' pictures will be posted to again show the growth and development of the plants. Enjoy!

Here is the center row of the greenhouse. The green of the germinating plants is a beautiful thing.

Here is the left side of the greenhouse. Notice the green of the plants in the background of the picture and the newly seeded flats in the foreground.

Baby basil plants. There are 160 varieties of basil. Z Food Farm will have eight varieties including Italian, Lime, Lemon, and Cinnamon.

Baby Swiss Chard.

This is some of the lettuce. Within the past week there has been an amazing amount of growth. Within approximately two weeks the lettuce will be ready for planting in the fields.

If you look back at previous posts you will have an appreciation of how much growth there has been with these plants. What you see on the heating mats are tomatoes, eggplants, sweet peppers, hot peppers, and various herbs.

This picture should give you a better perspective of how much the seedlings have grown. Remember, seeding started on March 21. Nature is truly amazing.

As a frame of reference, at this time last year the greenhouse was still in the process of being put together. The end walls were still not complete, and most certainly nothing was germinating in the greenhouse. As was written about last year at about this time, David was able to start his seeding at Cherry Grove Organic Farm through the generosity of Farmer Matt. It is amazing how far things have progressed at Z Food Farm. Market season is just around the corner. Looking forward to seeing everyone at Rittenhouse Square and at the farm stand. Yay farm fresh produce!!

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