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North Star Farms
P.O. Box 164
Carpio, N.D. 58725
(701) 720-2635

gardendwellers FARM

Marv's Blog
Je suis finis
Written by Marv Baker   
Sunday, 23 October 2011

I am finished, or shall I say the growing season is finished, at least outside.

In the past few days we've worked diligently getting things cleaned up, wintererized and organized around the farm so this winter season isn't as hectic as last winter. 

With the greenhouse finished, it's now a matter of maintenance. There's some work to do yet, but it can all be done inside where I expect it will be shirt-sleeve weather on those sunny, January days. 

The water bladders have yet to be installed and as we lose daylight and warmth in October, I'm getting a little concerned. I have to get those installed and filled before it gets too cold outside or I'll be chipping holes in the ice to draw water out of the river.

The problem is, I installed all four water bladders that came with our passive solar greenhouse, but all four leaked. I demanded new, non-leaking bladders and Farm Tek assured me they would manufacture some new ones, test them for leaks and send them out. Today is day 8 since I made the call.

Otherwise, 55-gallon drums, 24 of them compliments of the MInot Daily News, have been filled and double as table legs. The News receives soap to clean the presses and doesn't want the barrels taking up space in the building so Barry Bruce, the head pressman, gave them to us. They just needed to be rinsed of remaining soap and they work fabulous.

We ordered a heavy mesh netting to be used as table tops and haven't used them until now. When we got the greenhouse operational in May, we used saw horses and picnic tables and placed pallets on top just for a place for the produce. This past week I got all that situated and it looks much more like a greenhouse now than it did even two weeks ago.

With the high tunnels, there wasn't much to do as the plants inside have already frozen. It was just a matter of securing everything, placing pea rock around the perimeter and cleaning up the lawn around the tunnels. That area looks a lot better now too.

And, with garlic planted, we can get ready for winter. But wait, I expect to plant some seeds Oct. 30 and see what happens as the pendulum swings toward the winter solstice.

 
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