From: Susan Lee Hem, the Sharing Farm Greenhouse Manager
First, I would like thank the members of the Sharing Farm board who so
kindly took their time to toast the efforts of our many volunteers and farm
students with that very warm and delicious lunch on Thursday. A most
pleasurable and kind way to end the farming year and bring everyone together
to connect and to say “thank you”.
We’ve enjoyed some wonderful warm and dry weather this fall, which has not
only benefited preparing the fields but has allowed the greenhouse
volunteers (whose numbers have inexplicably swelled by six new people
joining our regulars) the opportunity to work in the herb garden.
Since we did a big clean up of the yard, our greenhouse was in order and we
planted another go around of patchoy varieties and lettuces, which are
growing slowly. The two hoop houses are fully planted with onions.
We also turned our attention to the herb garden and perennial
beds. And we are staying ahead of the spring weeds by laying newspaper and black
plastic along the climbing frame rows and in the weedy spaces between the hoop
houses where, come spring, the grass creeps into the beds.
It was a pleasure to tidy up the herb garden: replanting herbs
transplanted from the boxes in Field 2; digging out no end of grass clumps
and weeds; raising some of the low areas in the flower beds, which tend to
disappear under water; mulching vulnerable herbs; deadheading perennials and
mulching weedy areas with the cuttings.
Ken instructed me on how he has set up the winter irrigation system this
year. We’ve used it a couple of times already and it’s working well. Unfortunately we did
not have sufficient notice that the City was turning off the water and thus were unable to
fill the barrels as back up stations for hand watering if needed.
Today I began sorting out the herbs and packaging/labeling supplies, in
readiness for the upcoming colder weather. I gave the remaining packaged
herbs left over from 2010 to Karen Dar Woon who kindly took them to the Food
Bank. This year’s harvest of herbs, which we cut and dried this summer, have
been packed into bins, ready for our winter work in the barn.
Between Kareno’s and the volunteers’ diligence at harvesting and drying this
summer, we’ve managed to accumulate a bountiful supply and variety of
herbs, which we’ll package and have available as stock during next year.
We’ve also begun making more CommuniTea for the upcoming Christmas Fair,
and I have bought a supply of little organza sachets for us to bag the
lavender. Our goal now is put together a range of herbs ready for sale.