Bountiful Blessings Farm Produce

  (Hinckley, Illinois)
Locally Grown - Quality Farm Produce at Affordable Prices
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Cold Frame

Twenty-eight degrees this morning in Illinois. It is supposed to warm up to forty-two this afternoon. Tomorrow it going to rain. I will be working on the cold frame today. I need to get it finished so I have a place to put the seedlings for hardening off. There is never a lull in activity around the Bountiful Blessings Farm. It seems like there is always something to do. And if there is nothing to do for the produce business, I can always cut wood for the wood stove. 

I am considering making two cold frames 48" by 48". This will give me ample space to place for our seedlings.  I wish they were done as time is getting short, but I think I can accomplish the task in one day. I will be using 2 inch material for the sides and then placing cement block around the base of the frame for support and added insulation. My dad suggested putting Styrofoam insulation between the wood and the block. This will make it even better. There will be a poly top on hinges to allow ventilation as a cover. The frames will be places in open sun on a cement platform near one of our buildings. The building will act as a windbreak and the cement will gather solar heat to somewhat stabilize the temperature in the frames at night. I have some heating coils to put in the bottom of the frame should I decide to make one a hot bed. I am not sure a hot bed would give us any gain but the cables are available if needed.

Last night I made a very tasty supper. I made one of my favorites, chicken and biscuits. What a great comfort food! Of course we had fresh frozen vegetables for last years crop to go along with the chicken! It made me yearn for the new season and the fresh vegetables right out of the field. Of to a new day!


The Miracle of New Life

Today is another exciting day of planning and prepartation for the upcoming season. I will be getting the seed room ready this week and finishing the cold frame and hotbed. On Wednesday and Thursday I will be spreading manure. I am so exicited to get back out in the field! It will be fun! Seed orders will be completed today and by next week sometime, I will be planting the first batch of tomatoes and peppers for the High Tunnel. What could be more fun than seeing the miracle of a seed sprouting forth new growth and life! It is still amazing to me that so many Bountiful Blessings come from a small little seed. WOW! At Bountiful Blessings Farm Produce, we pray you too, will see the miracle of life this spring as God unwraps another wonderful gift to us in nature.

The New Hotbed

Today is the first of the week and time to start getting the hotbed built. I have decided to build a nice little hotbed to extend the season. It would be nice to have lettuce, beets, greens, spinach and other cool crop veggies available early this year. So, today I am going to brave the cold (not too bad today) and start building a hotbed. It will be fairly simple.I am going to make a frame from 2x6 material and cover it with 6 mil poly doors. There will be a heating coil placed under the soil to keep the soil temperature around 70 degrees. I am not sure how this will work, but if anyone has tried it, let me know your experiences. Tomorrow it is off to shovel manure. I am getting some cow and chicken manure to supplement the soil here at the farm. I am hoping to build the soil by adding organic material. I hope there is not too much weed seed in the manure! This could make for a messy job later, trying to keep the weeds out and the rows clean.

Preparing for the Season

I never realized there is so much work just getting ready for the new season. Seed orders, repairing equipment, planting, mixing soil, marketing, are just some of the things going on at Bountiful Blessings. I really believe that being prepared is a good key to being successful. So, I continue to the  prepare. One of the things I am planning on doing this week, is to build a hotbed and a cold frame. My goal is to be able to provide vegetables here in our local area earlier than I was able to do last year. With the High Tunnel, cold frame and hotbed, Bountiful Blessings should get a little bit of a jump on the season. It'll be nice to have lettuce, greens and cool weather crops early! It is exciting and fun getting ready - I can't wait to get my fingers back in the soil, planting and growing!
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