Yesterday I spent the morning at Rhizosphere Farm. It had been 10 days since I had last visited. During that time we’d had rain and lots of beautiful sunshine. Pulling into the drive I could see evidence of growth in the fields. The bright hues of salad greens and radishes could be seen in contrast to the dark soil. Seeds I had watched Terra sow were sprouting up, reaching for the warmth of the sun.
The seedlings in the greenhouse are growing too and being transplanted to bigger, 4 inch pots as they are quickly outgrowing their current flats. Just outside the greenhouse sorrel is ready for the picking. I even got to try some for the first time and loved it’s tart flavor.
Potato planting was on the agenda for the day…yukons, desiree, purple majesty and fingerlings. I didn’t really know a thing about the process of planting potatoes and had been looking forward to seeing how it was done.
Terra invited a few friends to help with the planting process, extra hands making the job go more quickly. She gave us a demo on how the planting should be done and everyone got to work.
Each potato is planted approximately 4 inches deep, cut side down, 12 inches apart. There soon became a rhythm of dropping, measuring and planting working down the tilled rows. I even planted a few fingerlings myself. I’d been dying to get my hands into that gorgeous black soil, it felt as beautiful as it looked.
As the potatoes grow, they will need to go back through for hilling. It’s the process of covering the above ground part of the plant with dirt, keeping it underground to promote growth. This will be done several times during the growing season to each individual plant.
My time at the farm ended as everyone broke for lunch. Heading to the trucks their conversations turned from potato planting to the tomatoes that needed to be transplanted that afternoon. The plants have outgrown their current flats and are ready to be moved to 4 inch pots.
It has become very clear to me, in just two visits to this beautiful farm, that when you are growing food, the work is rarely ever done.
To see last week’s visit and more about this project click here.
If you are local, and interested in participating in Rhizosphere Farm’s 2012 CSA, contact Terra here and she will email you the information about this year’s program.