First things first, we need to let you know that we will start attending markets a little later than planned. Our goal is the week of May 15th. We will use the time to finish building a roof over our walk in cooler, erect two additional hoop houses where we will plant ginger in a few short weeks, finalize our larger walk in cooler, and plant as much as possible.
Mark your calendars so you can come see us on our first market days!
- Stockbridge on May 19th from 4 pm to 7 pm and every following Friday through October!
- Dexter on May 20th from 8 am to 1 pm and every following Saturday through October!
- Howell on May 21st from 9 am to 2 pm and every following Sunday through October!
- Ann Arbor May 24th from 7 am to 3 pm and every following Wednesdaythrough December!
- Ann Arbor May 27th from 7 am to 3 pm and every following Saturday through December!
Honestly, we hate to delay, but it wasn’t really up to us. In the end of March when my whole heart wanted to be discing debris and plant material into the ground to prepare it for planting, we were waiting and pleading with the world for the rain to stop, much like now. It felt like it took forever to cobble together a few precipitation free days, thusly we don’t have much in the way of vegetables.
A farmer should not work a wet field and equipment getting stuck isn’t the only reason. Like a noodle that is firm when dry and smooshable when wet, when the ground is wet, the structure that gives the soil pockets for air, water, and creatures to exist, isn’t as strong. When this happens the soil can be easily compacted which can have lasting effects. Most plants do not grow well in compacted soil. They rely on those pockets to get their water and air, to get their nutrients, and to send their roots forth to forage.
In addition to the spring being wet, we are still learning land. It is bumpy! So while some areas are dry enough, they are right next to areas that are still way too wet. It took us a little while to figure out where to start and, I will let you in on a secret, it wasn’t where I planned on starting! But once we caught on (plant at the top of the hill) we were off!
So far we have just less than two acres planted. In that mix are onions, peas, carrots, beets, kale, lettuce, arugula, turnips, and radishes to name a few. We have our first planting of tomatoes in the hoop house, buffered from this cooler weather and these wicked winds. All the while we are still working wildly to prep more land and get more vegetables in the ground.
Fortunately, Jim and I didn’t have to do it alone. Kegan, one of the dedicated and hardworking people that have joined our team, stayed until 8 pm Friday night, plopping those tubers in furrows, which brings me to my next notable mention. We hired three people to work with us this year: Beverly, Kegan, and Emily, all working part time but with full time enthusiasm. They are amped to be learning about growing food and helping us build the kind of sustainable, community-based business that we want to bring into the world. There is still room for one more, so if you know someone that might be interested in getting involved, send them a link to our website (www.lakedividefarm.com) , or suggest they send me an email.
- We had our organic inspection! We are working with the Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association (OEFFA) to get our certification. The inspector, who works for an independent agency, came out and was very friendly and helpful and suggested that we
- Night Crawlers! I finished preparing the beds for the potatoes late on Tuesdaynight and the sun had long since set. After parking the tractor, I walked down to the field to count and measure a few beds. Being out on the farm at night is always exciting to me. I feel like I get to see its secret life. One thing I always love to do with a head lamp on is look for spiders. Their eyes reflect the light back just like a deer’s eyes would. As I was walking the beds counting them, I noticed a funny looking stick. I looking a little closer, and it vanished into the ground! I saw another, and the same thing happened! WORMS! GIANT FAT WORMS! And the fastest worms I have ever seen. In an attempt to see one, I dug into the soil where one had just hidden and I couldn’t dig fast enough. At first I saw its “tail” but I couldn’t dig fast enough to keep up. I don’t know if it is possible to take their picture. I could barely catch them (I did catch a slow one eventually.) I hear they are called night crawlers and that they are the best for fishing, but I haven’t looked it up yet. I do know that they made the farm feel even more enchanted and I didn’t think that was possible.
- Duck Eggs! I was walking with a friend on the West side, inspecting the land and looking at what is growing there, and all of a sudden a lady duck flew up from the ground! Exie was star struck and booked it after her and we looked down, pesky primates. Right at our feet was a nest brimming with eggs. A full dozen! Although I want to so see the youngsters when they break out of their shells, I don’t want Exie to, so I am staying away.
Helen, Jim, Exie the dog, and the Lake Divide Farm Crew!
(we begin attending on dates listed above)
Wednesday: Ann Arbor
The Ann Arbor Market is located in the Kerrytown District at 315 Detroit St, Ann Arbor, MI. The market runs from May thru December from 7 am to 3 pm.
The Stockbridge Open Air Market is located on the square in downtown Stockbridge. It runs from May thru October from 4 pm to 7 pm
Saturday: Ann Arbor and Dexter
The Ann Arbor Market is located in the Kerrytown District at 315 Detroit St, Ann Arbor, MI. The market runs from May thru December, 7 am to 3 pm and January thru April from 8 am to 3 pm.
The Dexter Farmers' Market is located in lovely downtown Dexter, at 3233 Alpine St, Dexter, MI. The market runs May thru October from 8 am to 1 pm.
The Howell Farmers' market can be found in the heart of Howell at State st and Clinton st, adjacent to the historic Livingston County Courthouse. It runs May thru October, 9 am to 2 pm.