February 2023 Monthly Update

Howdy folks!

February is when the garden seed starting really takes off. Nominally, if all goes as it was used to, the last frost date is April 15. Many seedling starts are “6 to 8 weeks before last frost.” Add to that the frost tolerant plants that are already started can get set out, and a cover crop can be started for the summer beds… Meanwhile, in the greenhouse the “winter season” crops are in the last two week push for the first week’s pick.

Bok Choi, some young peas and a bit of stray lettuce
Baby cabbage, more peas and lettuce (there are 2 1/2 more beds of lettuce)

The root crop bed has quite a few young radishes and some turnips; the beets therein are mighty slow to grow for some reason. Mustard and Kale are going to get set out this week as well. The outside beds have been tilled once during the “False Spring” and the sheltered outside beds will get additional cabbage, broccoli and cauliflower set out for the late part of winter season and the start of green season.

There are some changes in the garden prep this year based on preventing problems that happened in 2022 – additional ‘high and dry’ beds are being opened up for the early planting, and the late planting beds are getting red clover planted as a cover crop to suppress weeds and add tilth. 

Winter Squash bed ready for cover crop of clover

Because so many seeds have to be started over the next 6 weeks additional propagation shelves were built and set up in the main house – those will primarily be for cut flowers. The flower farmer has a new “flower wagon” which is set up for the collection of the cut flowers – it is pretty neat:

Flower Farmer Harvest Wagon

If the veggie farmer touches the flower wagon there is a severe punishment.

This is also the time of year when FarmCraft work is accomplished. Two sets of ‘towel of the month’ and the four season towels went out, and a number of cedar pots to a Begonia gardener. There will be sliced cedar chunks that have been used here at the farm to be planters available in February and beyond – it turns out that western red cedar has a strong tendency to rot out the core, which makes the pot building a challenge.

12 Sided: “Dodecahedron: 12 regular sides…” Flower pot.


Rotten core Cedar planter candidates
Example Cedar Planter with Succulents

Winter season (farm call only) starts Real Soon Now – welcome to the CSA emails will be going out the end of this week, and “what’s in the box” emails to those members will commence and be shared on the Boyce’s Shilofarm CSA Facebook page.  There was a request for an updated ‘flyer’ for the CSA which will be ready mid month for those of you who would like to direct your unsuspecting friends to the good food.

Just a reminder – the Winter CSA membership closes this week. There are folks who have confirmed they want to be ‘in,’ and those who have been in the past on this email list…

Also: Facebook has it’s own mind about letting folks see updates to the FB page. The owner of the page gets a count of views – which has looked pretty much like about 20% of the members. Email is the most assured way of updating you all about what is happening, unless you explicitly tell FB to “follow” the CSA page. It is perfectly reasonable to ignore FB and rely on the email, but not all of you check your email…

There are Four communications from the CSA:

  1. Boyce’s Shilofarm CSA FB page – chatty comments about what is happening, often updated daily.
  2. Shilofarm CSA ‘Interested’ email list – monthly updates, particularly up till the main season.
  3. Shilofarm “what’s in the box’ email list – duplicated on the www.shilofarm.com posts, and mentioned on the FB page
  4. Shilofarm LLC FB ‘business’ page – usually updated monthly with updates.

Once you sign up for a season, you will get a “what’s in the box” weekly email to peruse or ignore.

Hummm. That seems like all the news that fits this month.

By Doug

--- 'farmer doug' is the planner and heavy lifter for the CSA and the LLC. Loves to teach; "ask him the time, he'll tell you how to make a clock." Always has a new idea to try, some of which work. BTW - if you try and phone call, and you are NOT in his caller ID you will not be answered - just leave a message and you will be called right back.

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