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Posted 3/14/2014 8:13pm by Betsy Austin.

Hello everyone!!
Here it is mid-March..the weather most of the time has been wonderful!! We did get a little snow here last week..had about 1/2 inch mud with a good inch of slush..covered with about 1/2 inch of snow. It rained and snowed a good bit of the day then the sun came out and most of it was gone before sundown. Compared to this time last year March has been glorious!! We could use a bit more rain here in the valley and more snow on the high peaks. 

The prop house was full to the brim so I spent much of my day yesterday kicking plants out to the honey-house..this was after our adventures with replacing the door. Note..when you measure the old door remember how big it is when you go to get a new door!! Della very carefully measured before she and Mom went down to Habitat, but managed to get a door that was 6 inches smaller..Sooo..we had to re-frame the doorway to make it fit!! it was all good..we have had a problem with wind catching the door and messing it up..had been wanting to have the door open the other way but couldn't because the door was too wide..now we can. I fertilized and gave the alliums another haircut, fertilized the kohlrabi and pansies, and they are now happy in their new home. Today I filled most of that space I made yesterday up. Pricked up celery and lettuces. Then started broccoli, cauliflower, celeriac, hamburg parsley, nasturtiums, basil, and flats of greens for the community garden. Tomatoes, peppers and eggplant are all up and growing well. This next week is time to start another succession of greens, scallions, and lettuces. I also need to start chitting potatoes.

In the tunnel..well it's starting to look very green in there!! everything is growing in leaps and bounds..they are just lovin' all this sunshine!! the radishes, arugula, and salad greens I planted last week are already up. This next week I will be seeding another succession of arugula, radishes, salad greens, and beta greens. I will be transplanting the last succession of greens and lettuces as well..then the next ones are going outdoors!!

Outdoors..well the snow is all gone and the mud is firming up. This next week we will be starting to plant outdoors. Monday is pea plantin' day!! Anyone who would like to come and help we are starting about 10 am after we get our morning chores done!! The garlic is up and growing well, rhubarb is up, the maples are done blooming,but the willows look like they could start any moment, the apricot buds are showing color, the sun is shining, the birds are singing..I just love spring!!

Updates on our little birdie friends. The geese were not as happy with the snow this winter..not as much of it and not as fluffy and powdery!! They are supposed to mate for life and have been pairing up..we now have a better idea who are girls and who are boys. Miss Piggy is definitely a boy..but somehow Mr. Piggy just doesn't roll off the tongue as well!! Coral..one of the younger girls layed the first egg this morning!! Little duckies are not so little anymore..they are getting down right matronly!! The khaki cambells have been laying all winter. The cayugas started laying some last fall but quit during the winter..unless they are making a nest somewhere out in the garden they haven't started bach up yet. The muscovies started laying last week. Bandit, Della's stalker duck is still stalking her..he starts after my feet and looks very sheepish when he realizes he's got the wrong feet. He is also molting right now..he lost most all his feathers and has been running around in his winter underwear{layer of down under his feathers}. Poor guy..not only does he have a mohawk, huge feet, and a wart on his nose...

note: we do have chicken and duck eggs for sale here at the farm..chicken eggs are $4.00 and Duck eggs are $6.00. Just give us a call..249-9725..to pick some


work days for March will be every Saturday 9:00-noon. I can set up special days during the week for those folks that are unable to do Sat. Please let me know when you plan on being here.

We are about 21 short days to our first veggie pickup of the 2014 season!!!            The first pickup will be Saturday, April 5!! What will we have available that early?? If all goes well we should have radishes, turnips, green onions, green garlic, salad greens, arugula, and a goodly assortment of greens {swiss chard, kale, mustards, bok choi, orach, mizuna, yakina savoy and more}. We may also have beets, carrots, beta greens and bedding plants.maybe not the first week but shortly there after. 

We need your help!! Our goal is to reach 50 memberships this season!! Please sign up if you haven't already!! {huge thanks and blessings to those folks that signed up early!!}. Please talk us up to friends, family, co-workers, etc. We can talk to folks, show them around, and tell them how we grow your food, but it is your enthusiasm that gets them hooked!! If you have folks that are interested, I can set up farm tours anytime now...just need to call first to set up a time. 

So..member sign up for returning members .please go to the website  www.circleagarden.com and sign up!! Look for the box on the left side of the page that says membership actions and click on sign up now!! it will take you to the sign up page. click on returning member..it will ask for your e-mail address and will send you a link to verify you are who you are. Then just follow the directions.

have a mini share looking for a share partner..let me know if you are interested and I will get you her contact info.

For New members..same instructions for returning members except click on new member and follow the directions. For more information about our CSA please read about it under the heading OUR PRODUCTS. If you have any questions or would like a farm tour please feel free to contact us. I can do farm tours anytime now.



Looking forward to a great season!!

All of us at Circle A Garden

 

 

 

 

 

Posted 3/2/2014 6:03pm by Betsy Austin.

Hello everyone!!

Happy March!! Somehow I seem to have lost part of the last couple of weeks..been out in the prop house and the high tunnel playin' with the soil with all my little babies..and all of a sudden it's March!! Most of that time the weather has been beautiful..lots of sunshine..lows mostly high 20's to mid 30's, a couple of 40's. The highs have been anywhere from about low 50's to a couple of days in the low 70's. The lower temps have been the last couple of days when it has been very cloudy and raining!! Got some really nice gentle rains with this storm. So much different from last season!!

In the prop house, things are just popping out the soil and growing like weeds. The alliums got their first haircut and are growing fast. Kohlrabi, parsley, little lettuces are all doing well. Cabbages and artichokes are not quite big enough to prick-up but they should be ready this next week. Got tomatoes, peppers, and eggplant for the high tunnel started..it is so exciting! the first 2 tomatoes of the season popped up this morning!! We also have our ginger presprouting..it got here Thursday and we tucked it into trays and covered it coir. It is on the heat mats warming up..{I keep looking but it hasn't sprouted yet!! since it takes something like at least 4 weeks I may be pushing it a bit!!} 

In the tunnel..well it's filling up rapidly!! I think we have something like 6 of the 10 beds planted so far..the rest are waiting for next successions of goodies. Turnips and beets are getting their second set of leaves..carrots are up!! some of the favas are starting to come up..some I think are just waiting to annoy me!! The greens I planted 2 weeks ago are 3 times the size they were..the new babies I just transplanted this week look SO small in comparison!! let see if I can remember what I planted..hmmm...well..gaillon, 3 types of mustard, bok choi, orach, komatsuma, yakina savoy, red rain, mibuna, 2 types of chinese cabbage, and 8 or so varieties of head lettuce. Also seeded beta greens and salad greens. Next week I will seed the first successions of arugula and radishes. Oh, yeah, I have another tray of kale and one of lettuces, and a few endive and escarole that need to be transplanted as well.

Outdoors..well the snow is pretty much gone..a few spots in the shade left. Mud was just about firmed back up again when the rains came..it's a bit squishy underfoot today, but not like it was a couple weeks ago. Last Sunday we started pruning trees..a couple of our farmer freinds and us are getting together and helping each other with the pruning. We started with ours..what a delightful day it was..a little teaching, a lot of great company, a few laughs, and plenty of sunshine. Today we were going over to Alyssa's to do hers..but we all decided to wait until next week for more sunshine and less mud!! The maple is in full bloom this week..a bit early..buds on the apricots and lilacs are still swelling. The folks up at Buckhorn Gardens saw their first bluebirds of the season this last week before the rain started. 


note: we do have chicken and duck eggs for sale here at the farm..chicken eggs are $4.00 and Duck eggs are $6.00. Just give us a call..249-9725..to pick some


work days for March will be every Saturday 9:00-noon. I can set up special days during the week for those folks that are unable to do Sat. Please let me know when you plan on being here.

We are about 35 short days to our first veggie pickup of the 2014 season. The first pickup will be Saturday, April 5!! What will we have available that early?? If all goes well we should have radishes, turnips, green onions, green garlic, salad greens, arugula, and a goodly assortment of greens {swiss chard, kale, mustards, bok choi, orach, mizuna, yakina savoy and more}. We may also have beets, carrots, beta greens and bedding plants.maybe not the first week but shortly there after. 

We need your help!! Our goal is to reach 50 memberships this season!! Please sign up if you haven't already!! {huge thanks and blessings to those folks that signed up early!!}. Please talk us up to friends, family, co-workers, etc. We can talk to folks, show them around, and tell them how we grow your food, but it is your enthusiasm that gets them hooked!! If you have folks that are interested, it looks like we can start doing farm tours just about anytime now.  

So..member sign up for returning members .please go to the website  www.circleagarden.com and sign up!! Look for the box on the left side of the page that says membership actions and click on sign up now!! it will take you to the sign up page. click on returning member..it will ask for your e-mail address and will send you a link to verify you are who you are. Then just follow the directions.

have a mini share looking for a share partner..let me know if you are interested and I will get you her contact info.

For New members..same instructions for returning members except click on new member and follow the directions. For more information about our CSA please read about it under the heading OUR PRODUCTS. If you have any questions or would like a farm tour please feel free to contact us. I can start doing farm tours fairly soon unless we get a lot more snow here this next month.



Looking forward to a great season!!

All of us at Circle A Garden

 

 

 

 

 

Posted 1/26/2014 6:00pm by Betsy Austin.

Happy New Year everyone!!

Here we are in 2014!! Time marches on..seems like it marches a bit faster each year!! So far this year {all 26 days of it} have been pretty much sunny and fairly warm..for January. Our highs have been ranging in the high 30's early in the month to about mid 40's or warmer the last couple weeks. Our lows have been pretty much in the teens most of the month. What a difference from this time last season when our highs were barely above freezing and our lows were Cold..cold..cold.{11 below was our coldest night last January!!}. While Della, Mom, and I have been thoroughly enjoying all this sunshine, we desperatly need to see some precipitation..Here on the farm it has been over a month since we have seen more than a light skiff of snow and much of our snow cover we got in Dec. is gone. I think the mountains have gotten a bit more than we have, but drought conditions persist in much of Colorado.

2013 was another challenging year for farmers across the nation. Here at Circle A..well some of our challenges were a bit different from 2012. We started the year out with much colder and snowier conditions than we have had for a few years..it warmed up a bit in Febuary..almost all our snow was gone until that last week..then got a good storm and continued to get about a snow storm a week through much of March. Most of our fruit got frosted as it was blooming. April, May, and June were about average for us..not much rain but didn't have the high temperatures that we did in 2012. Our "monsoon" started kicking in during July with heavy thunder showers instead of those nice overnight soaking rains that I like. Many of our summer goodies were not happy with so much moisture all at once..we had tomatoes cracking as we picked them and melons soaking up excess water and cracking before they were even ripe!! At least we had crops to harvest unlike many farmers on the front range who were flooded out!! We had a mild fall..our first frost of the season was later than we were expecting and not as cold as it has been the last few..I think we were mid to high 20 instead of teens to low 20. Our fall greens in the tunnel just loved the weather up until the week before Thankgiving when we had this weird inversion thing going. Cooler temperatures, fog, and little sunshine..then some nice snowfall{we got a good foot here on the farm} and some sub zero temps..8 below was our lowest. By mid December though the inversion was a not so fond memory..the sun shone brightly, temperatures were a bit higher, and unfortunatly the snow fall did not continue. In spite of it all, we had a pretty good season..harvested over 12,000 lbs of produce from our 3 acres!! Down a bit from 2012 but a good bit of the difference came from the lack of fruit and way too many melons that went to our little birdie freinds. Our CSA membership was just about full..we ended the season with 48 members.

Our birdie freinds are doing well. The chickens are a layin', the geese should be old enough to lay come spring, some of the ducks have been laying since fall and the rest should be starting soon. The guineas are just waiting for the real spring to get here. Mom and Della want to get a few more guineas. They also have plans for baby chicks, geese, and ducks from our own birds..They can't wait for spring!!


note: we do have chicken and duck eggs for sale here at the farm..chicken eggs are $4.00 and Duck eggs are $6.00. Just give us a call..249-9725..to pick some up.

After a short break we are getting back into the swing of things. I have been working on seed and supply orders, and garden plans. Most of the seed orders have come in and I am finalizing the garden plans..just have to figure out where to put a few oddball things. We have the high tunnel just about ready to plant..on my calendar I have it written down that I was going to start planting in mid-Feb. again this year, but I am getting antsy and the weather has been great..the beds are just about warm enough now so unless it gets real cold in the next week I am going to go ahead and seed carrots, beets, and favas. I have all sorts of early greens up and growing in the prophouse already..chard, kales, mustards, asian greens. They will be just about big enough to plant in about 2 weeks!! Onions and leeks are seeded in trays but not quite up yet..I am impatient!!
2014 is going to be a great season!! We have found some new things to try..a few new tomatoes {in addition to the 20-30 varieties we already love to grow!!}..I have to admit that one of them I chose because of its name..pink bumblebee..some new varieties of greens..a puple daikon radish, 3 varieties of potatoes to go with the 7 or so we already grow..and we are finally going to try growing ginger{we ran into problems finding seed stock when we wanted to try it before}. We also plan on growing 4 colors of beets, 4 or 5 colors of carrots, about 20 varieties of peppers, I think we are up to about 30  varieties of winter squash, about 20 varieties of melons, 4 colors of turnips, many colors and shapes of radishes, a dozen or so varieties of lettuces, as well as brocolli, cauliflower, cabbage, kohlrabi, parsnips, rutabaga, artichokes, summer squash, peas, favas, green beans, celery and celeriac, sweet potatoes, garlic, leeks, onion, shallots, and many more garden delights!!


work days for January and Feb will be every Saturday 9:00-noon. I can set up special days during the week for those folks that are unable to do Sat. Please let me know when you plan on being here.

Member sign up for 2014 season is up and running. We did have to raise our prices this year..it has been 3 years since we've done that..our costs to grow your food just keep going up.

 
So..member sign up for returning members .please go to the website  www.circleagarden.com and sign up!! Look for the box on the left side of the page that says membership actions and click on sign up now!! it will take you to the sign up page. click on returning member..it will ask for your e-mail address and will send you a link to verify you are who you are. Then just follow the directions.

have a mini share looking for a share partner..let me know if you are interested and I will get you her contact info.

For New members..same instructions for returning members except click on new member and follow the directions. For more information about our CSA please read about it under the heading OUR PRODUCTS. If you have any questions or would like a farm tour please feel free to contact us. I can start doing farm tours fairly soon unless we get a lot more snow here this next month.


We also have several work shares available and our search for interns is on. Any one interested in either a work share or an internship, please contact me for more information.

Looking forward to a great season!!

All of us at Circle A Garden

 

 

 

 

 

Posted 8/22/2013 4:46pm by Betsy Austin.
Happy Abodanza!!

Much warmer this week..lots of sunshine..a couple of stray showers in the afternoon and evening.
Abodonza has arrived!! Just about everything responded to the warm temps and sunshine..Highs have been in the high 80's..lows in the low to mid 50's..it is amazing what a difference 10 degrees makes!! We will see how long this weather holds..been talking to my freind Horton up at Buckhorn Gardens..he's been reading somewhere about nighttime temps in the high 30's happening here starting early September. Please think lots of warm thoughts in the coming weeks for all our warm season veggies!!

 Fun observations..so far this week we have picked over 400 lbs of yummy produce!!{not counting the melons}..Della says we have something like 95 melons in the cooler already and we still have to pickthem again tommorrow..all the seeds {except the carrots} that we planted last week are us and doing well..

FUN events happening soon!!

Montrose Farmers Market
is celebrating their 35th anniversary and 4th annual Garlic Fest
Saturday September 7th starting at 8:30..for more information please visit their website  www.montrosefarmersmarket.com

Savour the San Juans..Local Foods, Local Chefs, Local Homes
Sunday September 15th, 11am to 4 pm
Tour and taste your way through six fabulous homes each showcasing a local chef preparing gourmet bites from local farms
Toast the Tour from 1-5 pm at Turn of the Century with local drinks and deserts.
Benefitting Montrose Community Foundation and Valley Food Partnership.
Tickets are $35 and can be purchased here at Circle A Garden {contact Betsy 249-9725}
For more information about this and other fun things happening please visit the Valley Food Parnership website  www.valleyfoodpartnership.org 


note: Ela fruit share folks..fruit share has started..boy are the peaches yummy!! If someone is picking up for you, please make sure that they know you have the fruit share..Thanks!!

Needed: pint canning jars..


Needed:  still in need of old carpet..if you are getting new please keep us in mind {just the carpet..no padding!!}

Baby ducks are now 12 weeks old..and spoiled rotten!! ..Turkeys are 15 weeks  old now..most everyone except peewee and Silver are sleepping in the trees..
Please do not chase the birds..or let your children chase the birds..if you sit quietly and watch them, a few will come right up to say hello!!
Be aware that we consider chasing the birds a form of animal abuse and will be speaking up more sharply to anyone who we consider is abusing our animals!! Thanks!!

 veggie pickup is  Saturday..9:00am-noon!!!


Workdays:
Workdays for the summer will be mainly our Wednesday kids day..9:00 am- noon. If this day doesn't work for for you we can set up time on Monday or Tuesday for you to get your hours in. {Wed is the only day for the kids} Now that it is so hot we can do adult time here at the farm earlier in the morning..I start before 6 am..{kid time is still going to be Wed 9-12}

What is available for the CSA??

this is my best guess on Thursday evening of what we will be harvesting in the morning.

Please be aware that all our produce is NOT "ready to eat". It is not "washed" per se..we chill it to get the feild heat out of it and get some of the soil off. Because of food saftey issues we recomend that you wash it before eating!!

From the high tunnel
Kale
Swiss chard
gallion 
malabar spinach
cucumbers
okra..still not too happy about those cold temps!!
peppers and eggplant
 tomatoes

From the great outdoors

 garlic 
summer squash
cucumbers..lots of cucs!!
 broccoli
cabbages..just a few
artichokes
sweet onions..
peppers..both sweet and hot
eggplant..much happier this week
tomatoes
carrots
beets
collards
beans
plums
the first few ground cherries and tomatillos
parsely
basil
and assorted herbs

note: please be kind to your fellow CSA members and share!! when I add everything up after we pick I put in a catagory those things that make the numbers come out..the catagory may have a total of 60 pounds and contain 2 or more veggies..if you take your entire share in just one item somebody else may not get any of that item.  THANKS!!

We also have eggs available for sale..they are $4.00/dozen.


Looking forward to seeing you all on Saturday!!

All of us at Circle A Garden

 

 

 

 

 

Posted 5/9/2013 6:23pm by Betsy Austin.
Happy May!!

A bit cloudy and wet this week. We have had a few  very nice rain showers this week..Many of them the kind I like..the nice gentle overnight rains. {ok so night started early afternoon and lasted until mid morning..but we can't complain too much..it's moisture..and it is raain and NOT that white stuff!!}. Temperatures have been a bit cool..mostly 50-60 during the day..nights from 32-40.

The rain has messed with my schedule this week..we didn't get everything done outdoors I wanted to..on the other hand we did get to spend some time in the prophouse and the tunnels..
Outdoors we got another succession of greens planted..the rest of the potatoes in ..more rhubarb weeded..and more beds ready to plant. In the prophouse we got the last tray of marigolds pricked up and late cabbages, tomatillos, and teddy bear sunflowers started. In the high tunnel we got more cucumbers and edible flowers planted and did in a few more weeds.


Needed: about 100 more gallon milk jugs for the low tunnel. It seems to be a bit colder so far than it was last year. We have about 100 all filled and ready to go, but I think we will need all those for the tomatoes that go in next week. Sweet potatoe slips should be coming in another week or so and I just don't think it will be warm enough for them without the extra jugs.
Also still in need of old carpet..if you are getting new please keep us in mind {just the carpet..no padding!!}

kid day turned out wet and rainy again..we'll keep trying..should have more settled weather as we go into the summer.
We would like to try something new this season. A Wednesday kid's day for those of you who have children. One of our workshare folks has a small child..one of his freinds has one as well. They have all come out to the farm to help out and the kids had a blast. So..he came up with a plan. If you have kids and would like to get some of your hours in, bring them along on Wednesday mornings{9:00-noon} for a fun workday. How will it work? Well the idea is to have one or two parents watch the small guys {maybe over on the lawn with some fun thing and take short tours of the farm}while the rest of the adults and older kids participate in whatever the project for the day might be.
Please NO kids without an adult..this is NOT daycare!!

We would like to work with Ela Family Farm again this year on a fruit share..please let me know soonest if you are interested..I'll try to remember to put a signup list out on Saturday.

Also, we are going to do turkeys again this year..They ate a ton of bugs and were a nice, if comic, addition to our summer. Downpayment this year will be $25..that's about 12 for the poult and the rest for labour costs..then in November when they are harvested there will be a charge for  feed.{last year we took the amount of feed they all ate and divided it out.} For those of you who did not get in on the turkey thing last year..the way it works is we raise your turkey for you..then the Sunday before Thankgiving you come out to the farm and help harvest your bird. I'm hoping we will have about 15 birds available for CSA members. We have already put an order in for them{so we can make sure to get the birds we want}. They are scheduled to be here sometime the week of May 8. I hope to have a signup list out on Saturday

Well, the bird population is growing!! In leaps and bounds!! Those geese and ducks must grow at least an inch everyday!! The little chickens are much more restrained..compared to the duck and geese they haven't grown much at all!!

Turkeys arrived this morning!!! They are SO tiny compared to the other babies!! Not sure if we will  have them out on the lawn Saturday..they may be a bit small and young to brave the weather.

 veggie pickup is  Saturday..9:00am-noon!!!


Workdays:
Workdays for May will be Sundays.. the 11th, the 18th,and the 25th..9:00am to noon. Projects will either be planting or getting beds ready to plant.

What is available for the CSA??
We do still have a few shares available!!
this is my best guess on Thursday evening of what we will be harvesting in the morning.
Please be aware that all our produce is NOT "ready to eat". It is not "washed" per se..we chill it to get the feild heat out of it and get some of the soil off. Because of food saftey issues we recomend that you wash it before eating!!

From the high tunnel
Kale
Swiss chard
Bok choi
Mustard
endive
escarole
pea greens
collards
orach
lettuce
salad greens
beta greens
radishes
turnips
 green garlic


From the great outdoors
green garlic
green onions
and rhubarb!!

and from the greenhouses..bedding plants!!


We also have eggs available for sale..they are $4.00/dozen.


Looking forward to seeing you all on Saturday!!

All of us at Circle A Garden

 

 

 

 

 

Posted 4/4/2013 7:07pm by Betsy Austin.
Happy glorious spring!!

Here we are in April already..less than 2 short DAYS from our first veggie pickup of the season!! What a truly glorious week it has been!! With the exception of Tuesday afternoon we have had more than abundant sunshine. {Tuesday we got about 15 minutes of almost hail..what you could call either soft hail or mushy sleet}. Most of the week our highs have been in the high 60's..lows in the high 30's-low 40's. Today we hit 70 and our lows are supposed to be mid-40's.

Well Marcus and I got the prophouse cleared out..but by Tuesday we had pretty much filled it back up.  Pricked up more herbs,lettuces, peppers, and eggplant and started more trays of greens. The next greenhouse is pretty much full now with artichokes, herbs, lettuces, and greens..the hardening off bench has a bit of room left but not much..must be time to plant!!

The high tunnel is looking great!! Can't even tell where the greens and the favas got nipped last week. Marcus was gone over the weekend and was amazed at how much everything had grown in just two days. We planted the last successions of lettuces and radishes for the tunnel. The next ones are going out in the feilds.

For our Saturday workday we gave the alliums a haircut, separated out the first 2 varities and got them ready to plant, mixed fertilizer, and got more trays set up for the prophouse. {Thanks Ester and Sally for all your help!!}
Needless to say we spent most of the week outdoors..digging sunchokes, turning compost, {yes we finally were able to get it turned!!}, planting the first of the onions and getting geared up for our first harvest tommorow. I made a list of everything we needed to get done this week..I think we ended up adding more things than marking them off!!

Once again I let Mom and Della loose in town by themselves..Guess what they came home with? The cutest little baby ducks and goslings!! If it is warm enough Saturday we will have them out on the lawn so everyone can see them.

First veggie pickup is this coming Saturday..April 6..9:00am-noon!!!
Farm tour This saturday as well..we'll start about 10:30. It will take about 1-2 hours depending on interest and how many question everyone has.. Come a bit early and pick out your veggies..then we will show you where they were grown!!


Workdays:
Workdays for April will be Sundays..the 7th, 21st and 28th ..9:00am to noon. Project for this week will be planting onions and getting beds ready to plant potatoes the following 2 workdays. If the weather doesn't cooperate we will be weeding in the high tunnel and working in the prophouse.

What is available for the CSA??
this is my best guess on Thursday evening of what we will be harvesting in the morning.
Please be aware that all our produce is NOT "ready to eat". It is not "washed" per se..we chill it to get the feild heat out of it and get some of the soil off. Because of food saftey issues we recomend that you wash it before eating!!

From the high tunnel
Kale
Swiss chard {a bit..it doesn't look as big as the other greens}
Bok choi
Mizuna
Mustard
collards
orach
salad greens
beta greens
chives
{was hoping to have turnips and radishes but they just aren't quite there yet}


From the great outdoors
green garlic
green onions
{for whatever reason they are bigger than the ones in the tunnel}

From storage
carrots
sunchokes
garlic
shallots

We also have eggs available for sale..they are $4.00/dozen.

Looking forward to seeing you all on Saturday!!

All of us at Circle A Garden

 

 

 

 

 

Posted 3/21/2013 6:54pm by Betsy Austin.
Happy equinox!!

Here we are the first day of spring!! What a day..started out with a good rain shower about 6:00 am..clearing and blue sky by 7:00..then a couple of hours where the weather couldn't make up it's mind..was either very cloudy or very sunny..then about 11:00 the wind picked up, the clouds rolled in, the temperature dropped and it poured down rain. We closed everything down and tucked everyone in..by about noon the sun was trying to shine again!!
Last week we had nice warm, sunny days..up to 70..we were running around in shorts and t-shirts a good bit of the time. Over the weekend it cooled off and we got some more moisture. A couple of nice gentle soaking rains here on the farm.  This weekend it looks like we are going to be in for some cooler weather..highs in the 40's..lows in the low 20's. Guess it's not quite time to put away my winter woolies!!
More signs of spring..The garlic is up!! The maple is blooming..the apricot buds are swelling, the snow is almost all gone, the mud is drying up, the grass is getting much greener, the weeds are starting to sprout, the birds are singing and all is well in my world!!

The prophouse is not so full for another day or two..we moved a bunch of stuff over to another greenhouse..but we have tomatoes, broccoli,cauliflower, and herbs ready to prick up. We are hoping we can kick alliums out to harden of this next week after this cold front moves on..'tis almost onion planting time..Marcus is so looking forward to it!! We seeded another batch of lettuces and scallions. The first batch of greens for outdoors gets seeded this week..can you beleive it is almost the end of March already??

The high tunnel is looking so happy!! everything is growing well.. a bit slower than last year..but this would be a good thing..we had a lot of greens that bolted early last season so we are happy that it is a bit cooler for them. Tommorow we plant the last succession of greens, radishes, arugula, salad greens, and bets greens..the next batch of stuff will go outdoors.


Workdays:
Workdays will be Saturday March 23 and March 30...9:00am to noon. Hopefully project for the 23rd will be planting peas!!  If the weather is bad we will be working in the prop house seeding flats of greens and pricking up more plants.

We are about 3 weeks out from our first veggie pickup{April 6}. Member signup is going well. Thank you everyone for talking us up!!  Still in need of more members so please keep talking!! Your enthusiasm is our best advertizing!! I can tell folks about what we do, how we do it, and show folks around the farm, but your enthusiasm is what gets folks hooked!! If you have folks who are interested please encourage them to sign up or if they would like more information or a farm tour please have them contact me through the website or by phone {249-9725..ask for Betsy} THANK YOU!!

Member sign up for 2013 season is up and running. Most everything is the same as last season..same size shares, same prices, but I have added a member agreement to the signup. So..member sign up for returning members .please go to the website  www.circleagarden.com and sign up!! Look for the box on the left side of the page that says membership actions and click on sign up now!! it will take you to the sign up page. click on returning member..it will ask for your e-mail address and will send you a link to verify you are who you are. Then just follow the directions.
For New members..same instructions for returning members except click on new member and follow the directions. For more information about our CSA please read about it under the heading OUR PRODUCTS. If you have any questions or would like a farm tour please feel free to contact us. I can start doing farm tours in March {or as  soon as the snow melts back a bit}. 


Looking forward to a great season!!

All of us at Circle A Garden

 

 

 

 

 

Posted 3/11/2013 6:15pm by Betsy Austin.
Happy Springtime in the rockies!!

After a weekend of snowy, sunny, cold, warm weather {we ended up with almost 10 inches of snow!!} it warmed up and was nice and sunny most of the week..up into the 50's.Then Friday it clouded back up and was much cooler over this past weekend..just a bit of snow..highs in the high 30's..lows down into the low 20's. The weather forcast is calling for somewhere around 60 this week with lows just above freezing..until the weekend when it is supposed to be cloudy and cooler again. More signs of spring..last weekend I saw my first 3 bluebirds of the season, many of the perennisl herbs are starting to send up new shoots, the rhubarb is starting to stick little red noses up out of the ground, and this morning I saw my first robin!!

The prophouse is bursting at the seams!! We had to kick all the alliums out into another greenhouse to make room!! We have cabbages, artichokes, Italian parsely, kohlrabi, pansies, scallions, and more greens all growing well. Last week we started peppers, tomatoes and eggplant for the high tunnel..and they are all coming up nicely. The celery we seeded last week isn't up yet..it takes it a while to get going. Today I started hot peppers, more eggplant, broccoli, cauliflower, and a bit of very early basil..may be a bit early for basil but I am getting antsy!! This week we will be pricking up curly parsely, seeding celeriac and parsely root.

The high tunnel is rapidly filling up!! The chard, kale, and other greens are doing well. Last week we transplanted lettuces and more greens. We have favas, beets, carrots, turnips, arugula, salad greens, and beta greens all up and starting to grow. Friday we seeded the first batch of radishes..they aren't up yet, but the sunshine this week should get them off to a good start.

Our first intern of the season got here just in time to shovel snow. Marcus has returned to get in on all the early season fun!! He came out from Nebraska with his girlfreind {Cameron}, and the dog{Jude} the last week of Febuary. The first few days they were here..well they moved a lot of snow!! Since then we have planted new seeds in the prophouse, got space for the alliums all fixed up, cleaned out the pot shed, watched the snow melt and turn into mud, put bird netting on the rollup sides of the high tunnel, planted all sorts of goodies in the tunnel, and waited for the compost bins to thaw. {we are still waiting on the compost bins..they just about get thawed enough to turn and it gets cold again..hopefully this week!!}. Cameron planted her very first seeds ever..turnips in the high tunnel and scallions in the prophouse..it is so much fun to introduce folks to the joy of watching those first seed come up!!

Workdays: I've been holding off on Saturday workdays untill some of the snow melts off..
Workdays will be Saturday March 23 and March 30...9:00am to noon. Hopefully project for the 23rd will be planting peas!!

We are about 5 weeks out from our first veggie pickup{April 6} and we need your help!! We have more folks signed up early this season, but still need quite a few more members. Ideally we need about 50 members..with a pretty even mix of share sizes to make ends meet. Right now we have many more Tiny shares than Full and Mini so it looks like we may need closer to 60-65 members. At this point it looks like we are going to need about 25 additionsl members. So can you give us a hand? Talk us up to friends, family, and co-workers. The enthusiasm of our members is our best advertizing!! I can tell folks about what we do, how we do it, and show folks around the farm, but your enthusiasm is what gets folks hooked!! If you have folks who are interested please encourage them to sign up or if they would like more information or a farm tour please have them contact me through the website or by phone {249-9725..ask for Betsy} THANK YOU!!

Member sign up for 2013 season is up and running. Most everything is the same as last season..same size shares, same prices, but I have added a member agreement to the signup. So..member sign up for returning members .please go to the website  www.circleagarden.com and sign up!! Look for the box on the left side of the page that says membership actions and click on sign up now!! it will take you to the sign up page. click on returning member..it will ask for your e-mail address and will send you a link to verify you are who you are. Then just follow the directions.
For New members..same instructions for returning members except click on new member and follow the directions. For more information about our CSA please read about it under the heading OUR PRODUCTS. If you have any questions or would like a farm tour please feel free to contact us. I can start doing farm tours in March {or as  soon as the snow melts back a bit}. 


Looking forward to a great season!!

All of us at Circle A Garden

 

 

 

 

 

Posted 2/22/2013 6:03pm by Betsy Austin.
Happy Spring?? almost!!

It was almost spring here on the farm the last couple of weeks. The snow was melting back..the mud was getting deeper by the day..the chickens were out playing in the sunshine..the maple trees were starting to bud..a few willows were starting to "glow"..soil was warming..grass was greening here and there..even saw our first red wing blackbird {he was sitting on a fence post just all full of himself..preening and singing his heart out}. Then yesterday happened!! We woke up to a good 4 inches of new snow..it cleared up a bit and the sun barely peeked out in the afternoon..then the clouds came back and it started snowing again. This morning we shoveled another good 4 inches and it snowed more after we were finished. The sun is trying to peek out just a bit now but the weatherman is calling for more snow over the weekend!! Don't get us wrong..we are happy to see moisture of any kind..{our snow pack in the mountains is still way down..we need much more before winter ends}..but Della and I are ready for some nice gentle spring rains!! Still would like to see it snow in the high country for at least another month, but dare I say we are looking forward to mud season!! {the geese are enjoying the snow but the chickens and guineas think it is for the birds!!}

Things in the prophouse are coming along nicely..have onions and leeks just about ready for their first "haircut". The first batch of greens are ready for transplant into the tunnel {we were going to do them this week but held off due to the snow..they will be going in this next week though}. The first batch of lettuce is growing well..it will be ready to transplant in another week or so. Kohlrabi is coming up and cabbages are just about ready to prick up. Artichokes are up and ready to prick up. Have all sorts of herbs coming up..oregano, thyme, rosemary, lavender, and parsely. This week we will be starting the next batch of greens and lettuces and I have to check my calendar but I think this is the week to start peppers and eggplant for the high tunnel. I may even get brave and start a bit of basil!!

The high tunnel is starting to change from winter to spring. We worked in there yesterday while it was snowing..balmy and quite comfortable. We went in with winter coats, hats, and gloves on..and shed them rapidly!!We have carrots, beets, and favas seeded..they aren't up yet, The green onions and garlic is starting to sprout..oregano and chives are up and growing well. We have beds all ready for all those greens. Soon it will be bursting with yummy cool season crops!!

We are about 6 weeks out from our first veggie pickup and we need your help!! We have more folks signed up early this season, but still need quite a few more members. Ideally we need about 50 members..with a pretty even mix of share sizes to make ends meet. Right now we have many more Tiny shares than Full and Mini so it looks like we may need closer to 60-65 members. At this point it looks like we are going to need about 25 additionsl members. So can you give us a hand? Talk us up to friends, family, and co-workers. The enthusiasm of our members is our best advertizing!! I can tell folks about what we do, how we do it, and show folks around the farm, but your enthusiasm is what gets folks hooked!! If you have folks who are interested please encourage them to sign up or if they would like more information or a farm tour please have them contact me through the website or by phone {249-9725..ask for Betsy} THANK YOU!!

Member sign up for 2013 season is up and running. Most everything is the same as last season..same size shares, same prices, but I have added a member agreement to the signup. So..member sign up for returning members .please go to the website  www.circleagarden.com and sign up!! Look for the box on the left side of the page that says membership actions and click on sign up now!! it will take you to the sign up page. click on returning member..it will ask for your e-mail address and will send you a link to verify you are who you are. Then just follow the directions.
For New members..same instructions for returning members except click on new member and follow the directions. For more information about our CSA please read about it under the heading OUR PRODUCTS. If you have any questions or would like a farm tour please feel free to contact us. I can start doing farm tours in March {or as  soon as the snow melts back a bit}. 


Looking forward to a great season!!

All of us at Circle A Garden

 

 

 

 

 

Posted 1/29/2013 4:47pm by Betsy Austin.
Happy New Year everyone!!

Can you believe it is 2013? I can remember{vaguely} a time when 2013 was somewhere way far future..you know back in the good ol' days when all my body parts worked and all my friends kids and my nieces were babes in arms..but time seems to be marching on..now the body is telling me things I never thought I'd hear and the kids..well..they are all grown and have families of their own!!
So far the new year has gone fairly well.. all 30 days of it!! A bit cold early in the month..we had about 2 weeks there when our daytime temps did not get above freezing and the night time..well..it's been a while since we have seen 11 below. We at least had some pretty good snow cover, much more than we have had for a few years. And mybe it was cold enough long enough to do in a few bugs!! The latter part of the month has been pretty mild. Lots of sun and warmer temps. Warm enough last week to start melting some of the snow and making things pretty mucky. Over the weekend {26th} we even had rain most of the day to make things even more mucky!! The temperatures are a bit cooler now..this morning we woke up to about 4 inches of new snow. the good news..I think the mountains got several feet of new snow!! Need some more but I think we have more snow pack so far this year than we did last.

2012 was a challenging season not only for us here at Circle A but for farmers across the nation. Much of Colorado had severe drought conditions most of the season. We did not get much snow during the winter, very little spring rain, and dry, dry, dry. We were getting a bit worried about some of our crops..even running the drip 24/7 it seemed like we just could not keep up with the dry conditions. Our "monsoon" kicked in in July and the rains helped out so much. All the plants that spent June just sitting there gasping in the heat perked up and started growing like weeds {the weeds grew too!!}. We didn't get enough rain to offset what we didn't get in the spring but at least here on our farm we made out ok. We had a few crops that just were not able to overcome the early conditions..spring greens, brocolli, cauliflower, potatoes, peas, favas, and beans. Other crops did exceedingly well..tomatoes, eggplant, and peppers went nuts..cabbages and celery did very well..not sure why the celery was so happy..our celery has NEVER done this well!! This year we had fruit coming out our ears as well. Apricots..first good crop in about 12 years..plums and apples..well it had been about 3-4 years since they had full crops. When I added up all my numbers at the end of the year we had harvested almost 16,000 pounds of produce..not too shabby!!

We had some new additions to the farm in 2012. Mom and Della started a flock of laying hens..I think they have about 50 now..mostly heritage breeds..most of them have been laying since late summer..Della and I go out to feed and water them..ok so Della feeds and waters while I try to bribe them out into the sunshine..they don't know what to make of all this cold white stuff!! They also started a flock of geese..the geese LOVE all the white stuff!! You don't know what you have missed if you have never seen a goose try to take a bath in fluffy powder snow!! We also had a small flock of turkeys running around the farm eating all sorts of bugs. All the birds were a great addition..it was fun watching them all grow..ok so the geese were a bit scary..they looked like they were full grown before they were 6 or 8 weeks old..I don't think I have seen anything grow that fast..not even weeds!!
We have eggs for sale here at the farm. Please give us a call {970-249-9725} if you would like to pick some up.

After a short break we are getting back into the swing of things. I have been working on seed and supply orders, and garden plans. Most of the seed orders have come in and I am finalizing the garden plans..just have to figure out where to put a few oddball things. We have the high tunnel just about ready to plant..next week green onions and garlic are going in. I have all sorts of early greens up and growing..chard, kales, mustards, asian greens. They will be just about big enough to plant in about 2 weeks!! Onions, leeks, and shallots are seeded in trays but not quite up yet..I am impatient!!
2013 is going to be a great season!! We have found some new things to try..a few new tomatoes {in addition to the 20-30 varieties we already love to grow!!}..a couple of eggplants {we have 4 varieties that do well for us}..some new varities of greens..wax gourds, and more!! We also plan on growing 4 colors of beets, 4 or 5 colors of carrots, about 20 varieties of peppers, I think we are up to about 30  varieties of winter squash, about 20 varieties of melons, 8 varieties of potatoes, 4 colors of turnips, many colors and shapes of radishes, a dozen or so varieties of lettuces, as well as brocolli, cauliflower, cabbage, kohlrabi, parsnips, rutabaga, artichokes, summer squash, peas, favas, green beans, celery and celeriac, sweet potatoes, garlic, leeks, onion, shallots, and many more garden delights!!

Member sign up for 2013 season is up and running. Most everything is the same as last season..same size shares, same prices, but I have added a member agreement to the signup. So..member sign up for returning members .please go to the website  www.circleagarden.com and sign up!! Look for the box on the left side of the page that says membership actions and click on sign up now!! it will take you to the sign up page. click on returning member..it will ask for your e-mail address and will send you a link to verify you are who you are. Then just follow the directions.
For New members..same instructions for returning members except click on new member and follow the directions. For more information about our CSA please read about it under the heading OUR PRODUCTS. If you have any questions or would like a farm tour please feel free to contact us. I can start doing farm tours in March {or as  soon as the snow melts back a bit}. 


Looking forward to a great season!!

All of us at Circle A Garden