applehillfarmnh.com Blog


blossoms

Posted in Uncategorized by Chuck on the May 15th, 2011

After a good stretch of fine spring weather it looks like we are headed for some cloudy and showery stuff. I planted corn on Thursday in the dust so a bit of rain is a good thing,,,,, but 5 days? We have brought in 24 bee hives to work the apple and peach blossoms. Without the transfer of pollen from one blossom to another no fruit will form, and honey bees are notoriously wimpy about working in anything other than sunny warm weather. The blossom period will only last about a week so hopefully we will get a few rays of sunshine here and there. This week looks to be really busy, we have strawberry plants to plant, raspberries, beans, and more corn, Diane is filling the greenhouse with all sorts of transplants that will go into the field in another week or so. But the real action this week will be on Wed. and Thurs., when we host School to Farm days for 4th graders in Concord and surrounding towns. There will be hundreds of kiddos, they get to visit with Diane in the orchard, a beekeeper, dairy farmer, maple sugar producers, some horses and probably something that I forgot. I hope they all wear their rubber boots given the forecast. On Fri we will hosting a busload of NH legislators for lunch and tour of the farm looking at some of the USDA research plots we have in the orchard. Oh and we be making the rounds trying to convince the bees that it is time to get to work. Chuck

May 2011

Posted in Uncategorized by Chuck on the May 4th, 2011

What a difference a year makes, by this time last year we all done with bloom, the bees were gone back home and we were nervous about frost. Yesterday a few early blossoms opened on some peaches and the apples are at early tight cluster stage, this is a more normal spring. Frost is always a concern in May and the old farmers always watched for the full moon in May as the last chance for damaging cold temps. This year the full moon is on the 17th. But work goes on here on the farm, 1/2 acre of peas in the ground, and I will start preparing land for planting in earnest this week. All of the compost that we made last year will be spread, fertilizers applied to fields as recommended by the soil tests we took last fall and then on the fields that were seeded to a rye cover crop in early August last year the mold board plow will till in the 1 foot tall rye, followed by the harrow. Later cover crop seedings, ( as we harvested crops) are not quite as tall and I can save some fuel and just run the harrow over them to prepare the soil. USDA entomology researchers will be here on Fri. to set up this years insect research plots. More on that later. Chuck