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Bundled up…

January 15, 2013

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After four days of record low temperatures there have been a lot of questions about how we fared.  Trust me, it has been a big issue of discussion and worry around here.  We have dealt with frost before, but this was more than just a cold snap.  Having the temperatures down that low for four days is unprecedented.  Bob watches the weather like a hawk.  He compares the weather reports from the National Weather Service, the Weather Channel, AccuWeather… to name a few.  We also have multiple weather stations positioned around the farm in order to get the best reading on the temperature from the different fields, when it gets as low as it has been a difference of even a few degrees can be a big deal.  So, we did what most of you did, we watched, we planned, and we bundled up.  Everything.

The farm now looks like this…

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Even the sugar snap peas and fava beans that normally look like this…

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Right now look like this…

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The good news it that it looks like we were able to save quite a bit.  We covered everything that needed to be covered with frost cloth and ran water through the drip tape to keep the ground temperature from getting too low.  The heartier plants like kale, broccoli and chard are fine being left uncovered and can handle temperatures as low as 10-degrees.  In fact, they looked pretty good to me this morning.

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We also left a lot of seedlings in the green house, rather than transplanting them into the fields, as we would normally do this time of year.  The green house is downright balmy right now, so there was no worry there.

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The citrus may have taken a hit.  The fruit protected in closest to the tree trunks should be fine, but the fruit on the outer branches and low to the ground may be lost.  While we were able to run drip lines out in the fields, the citrus orchards would normally receive frost water to keep the temperature in the orchard up.  This would be done with irrigation water and, unfortunately, the canals are empty at the moment as they are being worked on for maintenance.  We were picking as much as citrus possible last week in anticipation, so hopefully the loss won’t be too bad.

We will be at the markets this week and not to worry, we will have plenty to offer.  And happily, the thermometer is back on its way up again.  Hope to see you this week!

5 Comments leave one →
  1. Heather Wunderle permalink
    January 15, 2013 10:23 pm

    Lots and lots of prayers were sent your crop’s way this past few days/nights – even all the way from Grammie Cooley in Flagstaff. Glad to hear that most were fine…LOVE the bundled up pics. I think it is really awesome that you post pics like this so that people can get an idea of the lengths you guys go to get them the best produce possible! 🙂

  2. Joan Knapp permalink
    January 16, 2013 1:26 am

    How nice to see everything all safely bundled up!

  3. Pam Black permalink
    January 16, 2013 1:55 am

    I just love your blog and seeing you at the markets! I already get your emails….

  4. Jeri Ann permalink
    January 16, 2013 2:32 am

    What an operation! So glad all is well. Will see you tomorrow morning!

  5. Dee Dee permalink
    January 16, 2013 6:44 am

    I’ve been thinking about you but decided to call after this is over – no time for you to chat on the phone now! You’ve been colder than us (at night) – happy to hear you’re surviving this spell. Love from Canada, Dee Dee

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