Fall Vegetable Production slideshow, Growing for Market, Mother Earth News Fair

For the Mother Earth News Fair in Asheville, NC this past weekend, I updated and presented my Fall Vegetable Production slideshow. Here it is from Slideshare.net, including some bonus material I didn’t have time to present at the weekend.

The other slideshows which I have embedded in blogposts previously can be found by clicking the Slide Shows category in the list of categories to the left side of the page. This includes Crop Planning.

The Fair was a big success, despite challenging windy cold weather on Saturday. it takes more than that to deter the Mother Earth audience of gardeners, farmers, ranchers and homesteaders. The big tents all stood up to the weather. My 4 pm workshop was in one of the tents, and I wore many layers of clothes, including my jacket and woolly hat!

Image-front-cover_coverbookpageI went to some great workshops, including ones by Eliot Coleman, Jean-Martin Fortier, Curtis Stone from the west coast of Canada (I’ll be reviewing his book The Urban Farmer, in the next week or few), and Matt Coffay from Second Spring Market Garden in Asheville, North Carolina. The theme common to all these growers is producing wholesome fresh sustainably grown vegetables using manual tools and efficient techniques. My quest also!

GFM_April2016_cover_300pxThe April issue of Growing for Market magazine is out. The new editor is having the high-level problem of an over-abundance of good articles, and I didn’t manage to get one in this issue. You can read about ensuring food safety with your produce, in an article by Linda Naeve and Catherine Strohbehn; and one on refurbishing an abandoned edge-of-town garden center and converting it into a collaborative venture of several farmers growing microgreens and vegetable seedlings, by Lynn Byczynski ( the “retired” editor), who also plans to move her family’s seed business there. Paula Lee writes about having and maintaining an orderly farm office; Abbie Sewall discusses growing elderberries and aronia berries (and using bird netting very like our newer blueberry netting which I wrote about in May 2013); and lastly Gretel Adams on pest control in greenhouse flowers. Five great articles in 24 pages!

Our blueberry netting on PVC electrical conduit hoops. Credit Bridget Aleshire
Our blueberry netting on PVC electrical conduit hoops.
Credit Bridget Aleshire

Next week I’ll tell you more about recent work in our gardens. It’s been a bit depressing this week, with broccoli transplants dying on that very cold night last Saturday. But carrots have germinated, rhubarb is almost ready to harvest and the hoophouse tomatoes are looking particularly good!

3 thoughts on “Fall Vegetable Production slideshow, Growing for Market, Mother Earth News Fair”

  1. Hello Pam!
    First off: Thanks for all the great work you do sharing your knowledge! Much appreciated.
    I grow in Norway and I’m trying to adjust your info to my conditions. Temperatures are ok, they actually don’t differ that much, at least when it comes to the fall. What DO differ though is the amount of daylight. By 16 oct we hit 10hours. I reckon I can stretch the season a fair bit as soon as I manage to correlate growth+temp+light.So I wondered how this might affect you?

    All the best


  2. Hi Ola,
    Thanks for your appreciation. You are right that it’s the combination of temperature and light that affects growth. We can’t do much about the length of the daylight, except try to avoid harvesting leafy greens in the winter mornings when they contain high levels of nitrate (which isn’t good for us). Try to wait for at least four, and preferably six, hours of sunlight before harvesting leafy greens, especially if they are growing under protection in a hoophouse or greenhouse. How it works is that during the night the plant draws up nitrates from the soil (maybe other forms of nitrogen too, I don’t remember). During the day in the process of photosynthesis, the plant converts these nitrates into more plant material. It takes quite a few hours to convert a whole night’s worth of nitrates. In hoophouses plants grow faster than they would outdoors, so the cautions are more important.
    Plants grow more when they are warmer (until it gets too hot!), so rowcover, tunnels and greenhouses will give you more food. For instance, kale and spinach make some growth whenever the temperature is above 4.4C (40F). This happens a lot more often under rowcover than outdoors!

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