March 9, 2016

CSA Sign Up for Summer Season 2016

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It is time to sign-up for CSA membership for the 2016 summer season. We will begin the season in late April or early May as the weather allows.  Pickups are each Thursday on the farm from 2pm to 6pm for 20 weeks.  

See our CSA Membership Information Page for details and to download an application form. Feel free to call us or email us if you have any questions.

To reserve your spot, send us a quick email with your full name, letting us know that you want to purchase a share.

 

 

April 6, 2016

The Farm at Holmes: A 20-Year Vision of Sustainability

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Read all about us in April’s edition of Natural Awakenings

WakeUpNaturally.com

The first community supported agriculture crop was grown at the Farm at Holmes—a farm school and community farm on the…

Source: The Farm at Holmes: A 20-Year Vision of Sustainability

February 16, 2016

Greenhouse Project – Solar Shed

We have a large greenhouse (96 feet in length) that will continue to grow food late into the season and allow us to get an early start on vegetable growing.  The growing season for our area is roughly 5 to 6 months with frosts possible as late as May 15 and as early as October 15th.  So keeping gardens in our greenhouse allows us to extend the season.  However, we do experience extremely cold nights and extended overcast days making the inside of the greenhouse too cold.  Heating a large greenhouse can get expensive on a shoe-string budget plus we like to do things sustain-ably.  We are building a Solar-shed to collect passive heat from the sun to heat a 1500 gallon water tank and move heated water through pipes directly into raised beds inside the greenhouse. Although we have made a lot of progress we were hoping to be complete during this recent cold snap.  Unfortunately although the shed is mostly done, we do not have good enough weather to fill the tank and we need to set up a wood stove to supplement heat during stretches of cloudy, cold days before we can use it.

We started with the base in a sunny spot close to both greenhouses

We started with the base in a sunny spot close to both greenhouses

We used wood milled on site from local trees

We used wood milled on site from local trees

Shed is framed using all wood milled on site

Shed is framed using all wood milled on site

Yes this green tank will fit in there (the back wall is removable)

Yes this green tank will fit in there (the back wall is removable)

Continue reading

February 16, 2016

Greenhouse Project – Geothermal

We have been adding upgrades to our main greenhouse in the hopes of being able to extend our growing season and keep our early seedlings warm enough even when we get overnight temperatures into the single digits.  One method we are trying is related to geothermal principles; that under the ground, the ambient temperature of the earth remains the same (about 55 degrees) no matter what the temperature outside.   We hope to use the temperature to slowly warm cold air from inside the greenhouse, moving through tubes buried under the ground in the greenhouse and send back into the greenhouse warmer.  Any way we can keep the temperature of the greenhouse above 40 degrees (especially at night and on cloudy days) will help.  So far, we have completed the hard work, now we are devising a way to ensure that if the air is too cold the fan will shut off allowing the tubes of air to warm to 55 degrees again (avoiding cooling the underground tubes too much).

First, dig a hole - get some friends to help!

First, dig a hole – get some friends to help!

Then, dig some more...

Then, dig some more…

Rent a jackhammer for the hard stuff!

Rent a jackhammer for the hard stuff!

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February 16, 2016

October Farm Schools

Hay ride tourEach spring and fall, The Farm at Holmes hosts students of all ages to come to learn about farming, sustainability, and the importance of local, healthy, food.  Students or groups can visit for a short tour, a half-day and perform hands-on farm chores, or overnight to help solve problems, see and help a working farm, and make their own meals from the harvest.  Education is only for our visiting students.  An important part of our CSA is sharing information with our members regarding food choices, preparation, storage, and general discussions on food justice issues.  We feel that education is an important part of our sustainable farm.  We utilize sustainable farm practices that are vital to ensuring small local farms are available and continue to provide healthy food to their communities.

This fall season we hosted two local high schools that helped with the design and prep for our green

Students harvesting cabbage

Students harvesting cabbage

house upgrades (see our posts on geothermal air and solar-heated water greenhouse beds) projects in progress.  These upgrades will allow us to extend our growing season, starting seedlings earlier and growing in the greenhouse through November and maybe December of next year.

May 3, 2015

Spring piglets have arrived

IMG_0662 IMG_0660 Charlotte had her piglets two days ago.  Here are some pictures from when they were just a few hours old.  The piglets from the fall are already 6 months old.

April 20, 2015

Spring time planting

Seedlings have emerged and are growing well inside the greenhouses.  Outside we have to be careful still but have begun to plant the vegetables that don’t mind the cool nights.
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July 17, 2014

Harvesting Garlic

This week we harvested our garlic.  First we removed the ground fabric by lifting over the garlic plants.  Then we dug around the plants to loosen the soil.  We pulled out the plants, loaded them and got them indoors before the rain.  After all the garlic was harvested we hung the garlic to dry under fans.

Pulling ground cover off of garlic plants

Pulling ground cover off of garlic plants

Digging garlic

Digging garlic

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April 1, 2014

Slowly Spring

So hard to believe it is spring.  We still have snow and on warm days mixed with mud.  The snow melt and the rain in the past few days has made it hard to prep the fields so work in the gardens will have to wait a bit longer.  We have been working in the greenhouses where it is warm and on sunny days 85 degrees!  All of our first plantings have sprouted and are growing nicely (with heaters and under extra protection on cold nights).   Lettuce seedlings

March 7, 2014

Getting Started

We spotted some Robins at the farm the other day and they seemed to be as confused as I was about why we still had so much snow and little signs of spring!  But the season needs to start so we are digging out equipment from the snow and setting up a germination tent inside the greenhouse to ensure the cold temperatures at night don’t ruin the seedling progress.  The days are getting longer and warmer (slightly) but the nights are still cold.  Hang on spring will arrive eventually.

Spring Plantings

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