Tag Archives: friendly farms

Family Farm January update!

Merry Christmas and a happy New Year from the farm!

It’s been a wild open to the winter season!!! We are again reminded why we did not buy land in a valley, as many of the valley farmers we know are currently watching water flow through their green houses and over their fields. We have had our share of “liquid sunshine” here on the farm, and there are some ares that are boggy enough to pull off your boot, and then ask for your sock too. Maintaining dry footing and bedding areas for the animals are about our only outdoor challenge at the moment.

 

Taking advantage of some clear weather to spread more wood chips in the goat pen.


Even with a flat tire on the trailer, the farm help stuck with it, and got the job done!

We love the Christmas Holidays here on the farm.Quiet whispered phone conversations, evergreen needles stuck in socks, more sugar than what’s good for us, and fires in the wood stove. There are also wonderful “dark days” crafts, games and more treats!

It’s also a chance to start thinking of the new year. The farm plan for the CSA is under way, and with one full season under our belts, we can’t wait to start the 2016 Adalyn Farm CSA. It is going to be 100% local. And delivery is an option if your spring and summer schedule is hectic. There are two share sizes available, standard, and premium. If you are still learning to love your veggies, we would recommend the standard share. If you know you love them, then we would recommend a premium share. If you are single, empty nesters or grow a garden of your own, we would suggest you split a share. Splitting a share gives you a full share, every other week, and with the first shares coming out in May, and running for 25 weeks well into the fall, it’s a way to make sure your kitchen is stocked with fresh veggies before and after the “zucchini flood” that most home gardeners suffer from in late July and August. If you are interested in splitting a share, just mention that in the sign up sheet, and we’ll invoice you for half the cost of a full share.

 
These are some sample shares from the 2015 season.

If you have any questions on how this might work, please get in touch!

This really is a fun time of year, when things have slowed down and we look at the crop information from 2015, yields, germination and harvest timeline, taste tests, and recipes that we loved, and if we liked the food, decide what’s going to get care, love and attention again here on the farm, and what’s going to get skipped. Not that running a farm with veggies, hens, geese, pigs and goats ever really has a slow time.

-Your farmers.

Are you ready to sign up for fresh veggies in 2016?

HERE IS THE SIGN-UP LINK!

Adalyn Farm offerings for 2015

Hello, and welcome to 2015!!!

We are so excited and have so much to share with you.  First off, click through to our “about us” above, in the website header.  It’s new and updated, although it might be better said that it’s more in-depth, since we aren’t really new (we’re in our 30’s after all), and we haven’t really been updated (unless you include Farmer Joscelyn’s various surgeries). You’ll find our story there, as well as our management and farming practices spelled out.  We are scrubbing up some other little rough spots, so there might be more to see over the next few weeks.

(Gratuitous picture of food.)
 

We are super excited about the outcome from our farm meeting a few weeks ago.  In short, we are planning on more animals on the farm this year and a test Vegetable CSA.  We are raising pigs again, as well as turkeys for Thanksgiving and 2 batches of chickens.  All are pasture-raised, organically-fed and humanely-processed here on our farm just as before. For the chickens, we will have two different pick-up dates to try to accommodate more people.  Turkey and pigs will be done near the end of October, with a last batch of pigs done in December.  All of the details for each of these items can be found through the links below.  If you want to get in line for some of the tasty meat, simply click on the links that interest you and follow the instructions.  If your mind is currently blown, just reply to this e-mail and we can send you copies of the info. sheets for anything you are interested in.

Info. on PIGS!!

Info. on TURKEYS!!

Info. on CHICKENS!!

Now, how ’bout that Vegetable CSA?  Well, after hours of garden planning and talking through work load and expectations, we are sticking to our guns and running the Veg CSA as a test this year.  What does that mean? It means that we are running a very small (10 share) CSA for a pilot group of customers that will be patient as we work out the kinks and give us the needed feedback for improvement.  If all goes well, we will be going all-in on this in 2016.  In fact, it’s shaping up to be the cornerstone that our farm is going to run on.  Although we both prefer raising animals to plants, a living just can’t be made on 5 acres with only animals.  With a small 100 member CSA, it’s within reach, and we can still run our goats, pigs and various poultry, all without compromising our care and stewardship goals for the property.  Did I mention that we are excited?  It’s all out of our hands, but God-willing, we will be calling ourselves full-time farmers in just a few short years!

How can you help with this awesome dream?!?!  Well, if you’re not already a customer, please consider allowing us to grow food for your family. Additionally, if you have friends who care about environmental stewardship, where food comes from and local economy, please consider sharing this message with them.  We can assure you this e-mail will forward flawlessly.

Again, we love to hear from our customers and would be happy to send you more info. on any of our available offerings for 2015!

-The Adalyn Farmers

Spring is coming, the grass is starting to grow, and the birds are getting louder every morning.

~///~

When the animals leave home….

We love hearing from folks about the food we have grown here.  Especially when folks really take advantage of all that locally grown food has to offer.  From folks who part up their chickens, make broth, and canned meat or soup, to happy kids munching on carrots, it really lifts our spirits.  It makes all the work worth while.  We got one of the most uplifting e-mails of 2014 shortly before Christmas.  It was from one of our pork customers who literally used everything but the oink.  I’m linking to her ‘how to’ on making Canadian Bacon, just to give you some ideas for this year…

(oh, and we are in the midst of our 2015 farm planning meeting, yes more pigs and chickens)

How to Make Canadian Bacon at Home.

Community Seed Exchange (Take that you big, nasty government/big ag bully.)

I saw at least two stories over the holiday about seed banks and seed exchanges being in trouble.  The premise is that seed companies need to sell seed that has a standard germination rate, set by the “industry,” so folks don’t spend good money on bad seed.  In order to enforce this, some states have laws about seed that is distributed being germination tested.  Most community seed banks can’t afford this, or do it in-house as many commercial seed companies do.  Really it all comes back to money, and trying to protect the consumer, but it gets hijacked by some brain stem with a pulse in government who doesn’t want free seed being given away unless it is germination tested…..  Sound silly?  I thought so.

So, for a second year (Not in a row, that would be too puny.) we are coordinating a community seed exchange.  The details are below, and the only request is that you jump on Facebook and indicate that you are coming.  That way we can make sure we have enough zip-tie handcuffs for all you wild law breakers out there.  Just kidding about the handcuffs, but we do need to have an idea of how many folks will be there.  It’s also a bit of a potluck/snack bar, so please let me know if you want to bring something, and I can put you in touch with the person that is coordinating food. After all, too much guacamole is too much of a good thing, especially if there are no chips to go with it.

From the Stanwood Community Seed Exchange:

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“Are you ready for the 2015 garden season? Do you save seed from your garden to re-plant next year, or do you want to learn how? If you have seed to swap, plan to bring 4-8 shares (enough for a family garden), please germ test the seed if at all possible, and please pick just one or two of your favorites. Details on the actual exchange process to follow… And we do have a start on some door prizes…. And just to be clear, you don’t need to have seeds to swap to come, but if you don’t have seeds to swap, you won’t be able to participate in the seed exchange.

Our goal is to involve folks in the Stillaguamish Valley and surrounding areas, as we all share common seasonal variations that make gardening here unique. I am trying to line up a few folks to give informal talks or presentations, and we plan on having a light snack/lunch potluck. Kids are welcome, with parent supervision, because seeds are small and kids are quick.”

~///~

 

Keeping knives sharp, caring for us, our community and the land. And the CSA.

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I like knives; they are an incredibly useful tool. I especially like sharp knives. In fact, it’s almost a family joke that whatever knife I’m carrying will be shaving sharp. This idea has permeated into our close community, and I get asked from time to time to recommend a good sharp knife. Typically I will get into the specifics of knives, their uses, blade style and personal preference (Yes, I’ll head down any good rabbit trail.). Given that almost all knife manufacturers ship their knives shaving sharp, people get the sharp knife they asked me about.

What never comes up in these conversations is the maintenance, the required care that any knife will take to maintain its razor edge. I can tell you a secret; the maintenance is constant- one must be careful about how the cutting edge is used, resharpening is frequent, and the blade must be protected while in storage.  And don’t forget more resharpening.

We feel the exact same way about our farm and the food it produces.  Just like some folks would rather buy a new knife when their old one is dull, some people want a quick, easy solution to their food needs. We are willing to do the work, not only to have the best quality food available for us and our community, but to ensure that the production process (growing) of that food is humane, sustainable and realistic. What I mean by this is we want to make sure the earth is maintained through the growth of the food for now and with an eye on the needs of the future. That it’s humane; the needs of the animals as living creatures comes before the profit that they represent. That it’s sustainable, not asking more of the farmer or the land than it can give perpetually. And that it’s realistic; I wouldn’t buy a knife that required sharpening after each use, and we won’t grow food that places unrealistic expectations on the animals, the land, the production system, or us.

All that said, the knife still needs to be sharpened, the soil fed, animals cared for and our community provided for.  That is where we are headed in 2015.  We will be offering more to our community: more chickens, turkeys and pigs.  In fact, we will probably be producing all the animals we feel we can on the property we have now without compromising the standard of care for the land and animals.  We hope to be able to offer beef as well and will be offering our first trial-run of a Vegetable CSA.  Given our long-term goal of full-time farming and the realistic limitations of the property that we are stewarding, vegetable production looks to be our best option for our primary income stream.  After several years of running meat animals on pasture, we know that for us to expand, we will have to dive into vegetable production.  We just don’t have enough land to raise the number of animals we would need for full-time farming to become a reality.

Given that 2015 will be our first year of a Vegetable CSA, we are starting small and keeping it simple: on farm pick-up, no crazy new garden produce you aren’t familiar with, and a willingness to iron out the details as we unfold this new part of Adalyn Farm.  We are super excited and extremely motivated to work our way through the hurdles. Until then, Merry Christmas, and we look forward to serving you in the New Year!

Into the fall!

Alternate titles include “The pigs are getting fat”, “Dark days are coming” and “What I wanted to post”.  Ah the best laid plans.  Although a plan is better than a wish, or something like that.  I had planned to post about our pigs on the same day we had our Llama go down.  Caring for livestock isn’t like having a pet cat or dog.  You can’t always just load them up in the car and whisk them into the emergency vet.  Sometimes problems happen at 5am, and the only person on call with a response time that will work in the given situation is you.  So things go delayed.  I’m sure you understand, at least, given the response on social media, folks understand.

So what about the plan? Well, like my current favorite quote “a dream with no plan is just a wish” we have a plan for 2015, and beyond.  It’s ambitious, and exciting, and I am sure it will be fun.  It includes a little more in the way of updates, and food, and fun.  But I don’t want to let the cat out of the bag too soon (and not because I’m not a fan of cats, but because we need it to be dialed in before we start shouting things from the mountaintop).

Now to the pigs, cute aren’t they?

Fat Pigs

They have been moved three times now, on our property.  Unless you’ve had pigs, on your property, without perimeter fencing, you may not appreciate the gravity of that last statement.  They weigh around #200 now, and don’t come when they are called.  In fact, they kind of do whatever they want.  And when you want them to go from one electric fence enclosure to another, it isn’t exactly like you can open a gate and lead them in.  Let’s just say it sometimes involves lots of running, and the expenditure of vast quantities of treats.  And pigs are fast.  Think of them like a small hippo.

But it has gone well (so far).  A little panic when someone was leading them at a high rate of speed into the new paddock, and after dropping the feed pan, the pigs thought it would be more fun to keep chasing the person (in case they kept dropping treats).  The fence was cleared, and I’d give the jump a clean 10/10, however the landing was a bit rough, probably only a 7.5/10.  However, since everyone ended up where they were supposed to, it’s a win.

We are sold out for the year, turkeys for thanksgiving, and meat chickens.  The pigs are pre-sold as well.  Never fear, our plans are for more of all of the above next year, and if you and anyone you know would like to get a shot at any of the goods, have them sign up for our newsletter.  Sign up is on facebook (www.facebook.com/AdalynFarm) and on our main page on our web site.  If you wonder over to the facebook page, please give it a like, if you haven’t, and if you’ve enjoyed any of our farm offerings, we’d be super grateful if you gave us a review.  I think that’s all for now.  But there is more to come!

~The Adalyn Farmers

ps- thank you to all the folks who had us grow food for them this last year!  It was a profound honor to be your farmers!

Fall on the Farm.

It was getting cold.  But then yesterday, it was 70…  That does mean that winter greens are a full go.  In fact, we are trying out some really late sowing.  Elliott Coleman has written several books about winter greens, and he lives several degrees north of us.  So we get more sun, and less snow.  It’s a process right?

So’s the farm.  Turkey’s go to ice camp later this week, and we had a stretch of nice weather, so I figured I’d show you around the farm.

Leaves and webs

Mist and spiders…

Root Veggies

We love winter root veggies.  Roasted.

Chard delta

Chard Delta (like a river delta, get it?)

Spinach

Spinach (with renegade Bok Choy).  So far pest damage is almost nill in the hoop house.  #ftw

Safe turkeys

Just a few more days.  Moved twice a day, you should see them hit the grass when they get moved to a fresh spot.  Even with a full feeder.  Crazy.  #pasturedturkeys

So, there is the farm!  For today anyhow.  It changes from day to day, and really from moment to moment. Next year is going to be similar but really different too, as in more of the same. We are looking forward to next year. After this winter, cause just like the garden, and pasture, and dairy does, we all need rest.