part of the seasonal plan for our farm is planting cover crops.
"Planting a cover crop brings many benefits. It can improve the soil, prevent erosion, enhance drainage, inhibit weeds and attract beneficial insects,"
which makes this practice a significant part of our biodynamic farming.
"Cover cropping and crop rotations are two organic gardening practices
that can protect and rejuvenate soils, while fostering
balanced, biological diverse garden ecosystems."
|fava beans planted behind the fig|
|Mustard is another good cover crop-hard to see, |
but there are small green bits of mustard starting to grow
Growing Your Greens is the most watched gardening show on YouTube.
In this episode, John Kuhler demonstrates "harvesting" mature fava bean plants,
not to eat them (although you can do that), but to either cut them down
or plow them under to access the rich nitrogen this cover plant
brings to the soil. Fava beans are "nitrogen fixing" plants
which pull nitrogen from the air and put it into the soil.
In a few months, we will be doing something similar to this
at the farm to reap the benefits of the fava beans we are planting now.
This video gives you a good idea how to do this, even in a small space at home.
You will get a close-up view of the root nodules that are "nitrogen central" for this plant.
Our farm project encompasses the garden behind the fig
(where our farm-to-table all started) and the farm at
Imagery Estate Winery and we have cover crops at both locations.
|fava beans as cover crops|
Simultaneous with our work at the farm, we are keeping things
|two varieties of thyme in the greenhouse|
|new micro greens to plant|
|the worm bin a few weeks after creating it-|
how many worms are in there?
|the beginning of the insectary|
|Matt from Local Landscapers is starting the insectary |
with wildflower seeds. He is still deciding what else to plant.
The farm at the fig also includes the raised beds right outside the greenhouse.
In the summer, herbs overflow here making it easy for the chefs
to dash outside the kitchen door to pick just what they need.
Now the raised beds offer quick transport and protected spots
for some of our fragile starts.
|these onions growing in the raised beds|
|started out small in the greenhouse|
|soon there will be onions ready for the kitchen|
|onions on the grill at the girl & the fig|
All the work we do is a part of the cycle of
farm to table and we keep it going all year long,
no matter what the season.