Ebb and Flow Farm

  (Lakewood, Pennsylvania)
Producing vegetables on a micro/organic- farm and beyond
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My lower back remembers how much work farming is

  The birds are nesting the wild ramps are rampant and the sun is shining. So far this spring is gorgeous compared to the last three we've seen on the farm here in Lakewood, PA.  Already we've planted rows of carrots, spinach,lettuce,onions,peas,and radishes outdoors!. The tomato plants are starting to get their second set of leaves and looking healthy.The task of carrying them into the greenhouse in the morning and back into the heated cabin in the evening is getting old, but the tomatoes will reward us for it. Trays of baby plants abound inside the greenhouse.  Many rows have been roto tilled and composted and the earth is good. But farming a half acre by hand with walk behind tillers is wearing on the body. There's a lot of materials to move around and the chores are nearly endless. With all of the daylight hours  it's tempting to keep on working until dark. One day at a time and one chore at a time things get accomplished and before you know it,(about early June) the farm will be looking great and giving back to us and the community. 
 
 

an early spring

It's been a long journey home from Florida and we're ready to start the new farming season. Yes I know we get a late start, but that's ok. So the rush begins. The first mission was to rebuild the greenhouse before all else. Next we started trays and trays of seeds.This year spring has seem to come unusually early which should give an advantage as long as the weather holds. Already the fields are about dry enough to till. This is amazing for our soil type and climate. However there is one minor set back.

   We were shocked to find some squatters in our tiny cabin. It looked like it had been ransacked. What a set back. RATS!!!  Chewed and got into everything. This means all objects,furniture,bowls,spoons,tables,chairs,nick-knacks,jars,books,baskets,appliances, etc.... had to be taken outside and thoroughly cleaned and dried. Yikes! It's been 5 days and we're still not back to a livable space. This is a small price to pay to be in paradise for the winter months. Anyway, the weather couldn't have worked any more to our advantage. But instead of prepping garden beds and planting seeds we are completely re mediating our cabin.

       This is an exciting year for the farm. We have more ground ready to plant than ever before. all that earth moving, manure hauling, compost loading, hay spreading,tilling and cover cropping ought to pay off this year. It's time to get working!  Grow seeds grow!!

 

 
 

The Northern Migration...

The sun is shining, a cool breeze flows through the open windows and outside a palm sways gently , I hear the call of a blue jay,the grass is green and it's above 60 degrees and yet we're still chilly. Compared to where we have just been, it is cold. This winter my life partener Jocelyn and I ventured to Costa Rica to get a taste of organic farming and permaculture in the tropics.Yeah I know it sounds ideal, and in fact it is. We've been traveling to the tropics or sub-tropics to work on farms for the past 7 winters.Right now we're back in Florida getting ready to Make the final drive North to our tiny Farmstead in Northern Wayne County PA.

We're on our fourth season in PA. This year we'll have a full acre planted with vegetables,flowers, culinary herbs and medicinal plants. It's fun to farm on paper, but the real excitement happens when we're  doing hands on  physical work. Of course we sacrifice getting an extra early start on seedling for soaking up the tropical sunshine a couple extra weeks. Oh, and not to mention the fresh local vegetables we get all winter long.Our location in PA is closer to a Vermont (aka. Vermontsillvania) climate anyway and we are 3 weeks behind most of PA farmers. OK, I know we're spoiled and maybe even food snobs. But I'm here to say that if this is what you want, you don't need to wait until you're wrinkled and arthritic to become a snowbird. Maybe some day we'll long for those dark cold nights, white out conditions, 3 foot snow drifts, driveway plowing, grab another log without slipping on the ice, hot soups and tea, Stay at home roads, skiing,etc....Or on second thought keep continuing on to the tropics.............................

We know for sure that when the green garlic starts peeking through the matted hay, it's on! We'll be farming full throttle until October. Building greenhouses, moving compost, making seed starter mix, endless flats of seedlings, walk behind rototillers, floating row covers, mulch fabric, earth-way seeders in action,and a constant observation of conditions. The excitement never ends. We can't wait to connect with the public through wholesome organic produce again.When spring has sprung the season has begun< the life that lay sleeping towards the sun starts a creeping and the seeds that need sowing is the food we'll be reaping!   I'll be back to explain more detail of the farm and our products and processes as the season commences. Salud, to your health... Forrest Skylar

 
 
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