Update: The Homestead Organic Journal
March 27. I'm keeping a purportedly non-fictional farm journal this year. For some reason I feel the urge to remind myself of that about, oh, every two weeks or so. Weird!
March 28: A full day off the farm spent down the road in Summerland @ TH Wines, helping friend and moustache enthusiast Tyler Harlton bottle 1000 cases of his best stuff. Tyler made me the Dumper, who stands at the head of a mobile bottling line on a tractor-trailer and dumps each case of empty bottles into the bottling machine.
Thrived in the role, but, likely owing to repeated exposure to the tiny puffs of microscopic cardboard particles that wheeze out with each dumped case by day's end, I was showing the telltale dry cough of Dumper's Lung . Another Dumper Wunderkind snuffed out before his time.
March 31: Transplanted beets, spinach, scallions, basil, parsley, salad turnips, kale, chard, and lettuce into unheated tunnels. Peas could be planted outside any time. Started broccoli and kale in the nursery. Potted on tomatoes, peppers, eggplants. Local gardeners should get their tomatoes started indoors if they haven't already, or plan on buying seedlings.
April 2: Such nice weather! Bumped into my landlord, Joe, just after having removed my shirt for cooling purposes following a hard run. He remarked that I had shoulders like a runway model. Wore a tube top around the farm for three days before I realized it wasn't a compliment.
April 4: Embarrassed to be seen in IGA just to buy candy, $1.50 worth, for sweets addiction, on a debit card, I grab some flowers for Vanessa too. This was a good decision; she was pleased. She mightn't have been if she knew the moral compromise involved. You've heard of blood diamonds? These were Gummi Bear Tulips.
April 6: Rehearsals for Bus Stop with the Peachland Players continue as we approach opening night on April 10. My character, a young cowboy, is supposed to eat three burgers during the play, which we'll be procuring from A&W. I just did the math: 5 shows x 3 burgers/show = 15 burgers in four days. And an angioplasty on the fifth.
April 7: Experimenting with starting carrots in the nursery for later transplanting. Not normally done, but using a special potting method called soil blocking will allow me to transplant the carrots out, three or four to each soil block, without disturbing their roots. If it works I'll avoid time-consuming carrot weeding later on. One of my favourite parts of this job is the leeway to approach every single task from various angles. A farm is a giant set of puzzles to be solved.
April 8: Does anyone else's heart sing when they drive by the once controversial Peachland skate park and see, like a jillion youths enjoying the heck out of it? Though suppose it comes at the expense of the traffic at the Peachland Drugs and Graffiti Park, so I guess it's a zero sum game.