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January 27th 2015

This Week On The Farm: Week 5

Written by
Floret

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It has been a quiet week. Eerily quiet. No wind, or rain, just stillness. I notice myself making drama just to have a distraction from the silence. All season I longed for this time of quiet. Now that it’s here I’m not quite sure what to do with myself.

It’s not that there isn’t plenty to do. I have a book to write, many plans to finalize, a million details to pull together. But it’s quiet work. Solitary work. And I’m finding myself looking for distractions.

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All of the hoop houses are now weeded.

The ranunculus and poppies have recieved their first foliar dose of compost tea. The plants are all steadily filling in and greening up.

I wonder if winter will ever arrive here in Washington. Only time will tell.

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The tulips have been steadily been blooming away in the heated greenhouse. We’ve screwed up more than we’ve succeeded on this new project, but we’ve learned so much already. Mostly what not to do. But from past experience, that’s how we master everything, eventually. The key is to not get too hyper focused on what isn’t going according to plan and instead take frantic notes and look on the bright side. We’ll figure it out.

But what a luxury to have jars of fresh flowers scattered all over the house in January. It’s a first!

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With all of this mild weather the spring hoop house crops are chugging along steadily. Last night I checked and the baby icelandic poppies are already setting buds. Last year we didn’t get our first flowers until late February.

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How are things progressing in your corner of the world? Anything exciting? Hard? Interesting?

30 Comments

  1. Of Many Parts // Syrah on

    Here in Alabama it’s been warm, cold, warm, cold… my poor bulbs are so confused on whether to bloom or not. Fingers crossed they make it until April! Just got my first Sweet Pea sprouts under the grow light and I couldn’t be more excited!

    Reply
  2. Jeny on

    Here in South Florida it’s COLD this week! 50s! We are all freezing! LOL! I trialed some cleome seed back in the fall and got my first bloom this week! It’s gorgeous and healthy looking. Victory! I ordered my dahlias last week and will give a try to some of the most heat tolerant David Austin roses this year. Can wait til they arrive! Also figuring out compost tea…

    Reply
  3. Dori Troutman on

    Oh, I love that photography. Soooo gorgeous! – Dori –

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  4. Ariana on

    Do you plan to do a more detailed post about your current tulip experiment? I am curious to learn more of the details, and what did not work/what is working.

    Reply
  5. Katie on

    The first few photos on this post are so eerily beautiful!!! Most of the snow has melted, but we’re due for another cold snap early next week.

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  6. Lindsay ~ Green Creek Gardens on

    A very exciting event happened this past weekend…we put up our first hoop house! I feel like a “real” flower farmer now!!!!

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  7. Julia on

    It has been so warm here in Ellensburg. Last night, I saw that the temp was close to 50 degrees before I went to bed. I was able to till up a section of my garden, which is unheard of at this time of the year. We are preparing for drought, unless the moisture comes. The weather is so enjoyable, though, and the kids and I have been outside everyday playing and working.

    Reply
  8. Elisabeth Bromley on

    It’s minus 20 C in Ontario (this morning). I would love to be able to spend time in a hoop house, hope you enjoy it! It’s hard to get the little kids outside lately, but at least it has been sunny, a welcome change from the dreary late fall/ early winter. I love seeing what’s going on at your farm, and I’m glad to see your flowers doing so well. I’m hoping we come out of this winter with less plant damage than last winter. A lot of people had damage to flowering shrubs, purple sandcherry in particular. Come on spring, I’ve got big plans for you!

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  9. farmandgardenflowers on

    There’s snow on the ground here in Pennsylvania. I’m making plans for a new piece of equipment for the farm, and a truck-load of compost to be delivered; both keep me up at night. There are hyacinths, dwarf daffodils, and muscari coming up in pots. I’m resisting the urge to start seed germination too soon – don’t want to repeat last years mistakes.

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  10. Waverly School Farm on

    In Southern CA, we’re looking at our first harvest of anemones next week with ranunculus not far behind. I am going to have to move if I’m ever going to learn how to quilt.

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  11. Haley on

    Hi! I found your website about this time last year, while my mom was being treated for cancer. We spent hours being cheered by your luscious pictures (she grew up on the farm that I now run with my husband in Connecticut.) We’ve both learned a lot, and gotten a lot of inspiration from you guys! I’ve expanded our flower offerings this year, and spent the blizzard finalizing our planting succession. I also have a question–I’m growing ranunculus for the first time (under row cover in an unheated greenhouse) and they are plugging along despite the cold. I wonder if you dig and reuse yours each year, or if you treat them as annuals? Thank you for being so generous with your time and knowledge!

    Reply
  12. Rita Jane Anders on

    Should be saying my morning prayers but instead reading your delightful blog. Drinking coffee waiting for daylight to get started so I can go pick my dahlias and a few handfuls of ranunculus and anemones starting. Keep writing and can’t wait to read your book.

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  13. Terri Bowlby-Chiasson on

    Blizzard hit here in Nova Scotia, Canada yesterday…more snow on the way during the next week…more time to plan and finalize seed orders…and read this wonderful blog!

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  14. VillageKid on

    Whoops…the ‘publish’ button went too quickly.
    We love it when the equinox turns back around and adds daylight to our days, especially when it has been so sunny as the last week.

    Books, mostly flower ones, are being read. Some spread sheets worked out….no, well almost no, idle time here in the north!

    BTW- Love to see the mist and fog…so enjoy that ‘quiet’ look!

    Reply
  15. VillageKid on

    After nights down to -7 just a few days ago we have rebound to nights in the mid 30’s for a few more, before again due to plunge into the Arctic temps again!!

    Not to be put off the seed trays are starting up with some plantings of foliage, flowers and a few ‘odds and ends’. They are snuggled onto heat mats and under lights that will go on once needed.

    We are adding 30 minutes a week in daylight….don’t yeah love when those equinoxes turn back in your

    Reply
  16. Rose on

    Mid summer here so wedding season in full swing. So hot. Flowers wilting. Bursting with colour. Frenzied days. Your days are sounding glorious and restful in some ways as new growth appears.

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  17. Janelle on

    Hard and interesting. After managing not to let them freeze, every leaf on my baby anemones and ranunculas were eaten by some starving creature. I don’t know if they will bounce back or not. But I have hundreds of sweet peas planted, tons of seeds on the way and my first hoophouse being built. Best of all I see buds on the trees and bulbs poking up. It’s the promise of spring. You continue to inspire me Erin.

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  18. Erika on

    These are magical photographs! Such beauty in the light and stillness. I too have found this week to be a bit of a challenge. My focus is not completely honed. Find myself daydreaming about Spring often. I absolutely love your weekly blog posts of “This Week On The Farm” truly they are inspiring.

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  19. Corinne on

    Great photos, glad everything is going great. We had 8 inches of snow yesterday, more on it way for Thursday. Winter is here. Poppies look great,

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  20. Alexandra on

    we are still in deep winter in Chicago, and I’ve reached my I’m tired of winter stage. The sweetpeas that I ordered all arrived and all I have to do is wait to start getting them to germinate while praying it starts warming up around here so I can get them planted in our garden. March can’t come soon enough around here. Waiting for all the tulips, hellebores, hyacinths and muscari to bloom is like watching paint drying on a wall. I can’t wait for spring

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  21. Linda Q on

    I will have to agree that is is hard to focus on paperwork when you are so used to getting out and moving around and doing things! This time of year I try to reward myself with an ‘outing’ even if it is just to go out and pick up something at the store only if I have completed a set task. It is a tough job being your own boss – especially when you work where you live! Erin, you do so very much-running a business AND sharing your knowledge and expertise with others. Thank you for your blog and beautiful pictures-I look forward to your posts every week.
    We had our first blizzard of the season last night-it wasn’t as bad as predicted here in Connecticut-only about a foot of snow and thankfully we didn’t loose power. Your tulips look wonderful!

    Reply
  22. Kristen Carrier on

    Over here in Kelowna, BC Canada winter has been mild and it really feels like spring is close. With that brings excitement, anticipation and knowing of the craziness that it will bring. I am loving the time before to reflect, research and rest.

    Reply
  23. Tonya on

    Ive somehow managed to kill every single tulip I’ve tried to force this year. :/ I should probably give up while I’m ahead ha.

    Reply
  24. Karate on

    Also, I have taken to over-sharing. Haha. Whoops! I forgot that I’m getting The Flower Farmer’s Year this week! And my very first new pair of secateurs. So.. that’s exciting! I am so filled with hope about this year. Ah! I needed this post. Thank you!

    Reply
  25. Karate on

    Ah, the fog. I haven’t seen the cherry blossoms (also in Victoria) but my sinuses have felt them. Haha.

    Everything feels hard this week – wonder week, teething (four teeth!), very little sleep, lost a wonderful job opportunity, my phone locked itself, a cheque was stolen from the mail. Sigh.

    But! The weather is improving (I mean, it’s a bit soon, but sill) so I can get more work done outside, I found a patch of beyoootiful hellebores and a striped camellia, and my baby said “mama” for the first time today! Lots of dadadadadaaabaaaaaa but today, just a straight up “mama”. And I have just remembered that I have melon ice cream in the freezer. Life is alright! Hot damn.

    Reply
  26. Leslie Oscar on

    Beautiful photos. Love the poppies and tulips. XOLO

    Reply
  27. Abby Lee on

    Still frozen here. Blizzard threatening the high tunnel. Dreaming with seed catalogs by the fire. Waiting to make my move…

    Reply

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