Monday, May 21, 2012

Rain, Rain Go Away! Wait, It worked!

Katie weeds our Red Leprechaun & Reine des Glaces
This past week has been incredibly busy for Three Plaid.  We were at a standstill while the Spring rains soaked the fields for what seemed like an eternity.  We were jumping at the bit to get into those fields. And finally our time came.  Phew!

While we waited for the soil to dry out just enough to be worked, we got a jump on weeds that reared their ugly heads.  As any organic farmer or home gardener will tell you, it is best to uproot weeds when they are tiny. Otherwise, you may end up with a carpet of unwanted greenery in a matter of days.  We've seen it, and it isn't pretty.

Weeding, unfortunately,  is often described as the full-time job of the organic farmer.  Three Plaid is striving to make it more of a part-time job using two tactics--and no, one of them is not having our pregnant partner, Katie (shown to the left), do all the weeding because she is a great weeder.:)  We plan to combat weeds by sowing white clover beneath our established crops & by working towards a no-till system.  The experimentation with no-till will have to wait until next year when we (hopefully) have an established plot.  The clover experiment, however, will begin this year.  In short, we will weed our beds until the crop is well established and thriving.  Then we will broadcast white clover seed across the entire bed.  This cover crop, or living mulch, will begin to grow and ideally crowd out weeds without competing with our veggies, fruits, and flowers.  The hope is that our weeding time will be cut significantly while the clover adds nutrients to the soil.  A win-win situation! 

We will post more about why we chose white clover as an under-sown cover crop in future posts.  In the meantime, to learn more about the transplanting that took place this week, check out our "Busy Times at Three Plaid" & "And then there were Potatoes" photo albums on our Facebook page!

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