As the air turns crisp and the days shorten, our urban farm enters an important stage of building the foundations for our next year’s harvest. Here’s an update on all fun projects going on at the farm this Autumn!
Our temperate climate in the Pacific Northwest makes growing food in all four seasons possible. By September and October we have planted kale, cabbage, brocolli, rapini and other cold hardy vegetables that will flourish all throughout the Winter months. We also sneak in a harvest of heirloom lettuces each Autumn after the height of summer but before the cold set in.
We plant many cloves of garlic in early Autumn to grow all Winter and Spring and be harvested in the early Summer.
Beyond laying the foundation for our Fall and Winter garden, this time of year also finds us practicing biodynamic techniques to return some of the nutrients and minerals that we removed from our land with our harvests. We keep our soil healthy by adding compost made on the farm and a mix of natural mineral ammendments from our friends at the amazing Naomi’s Organic Farm Supply.
We also practice the time-honored tradition of growing a cover crop each Winter that will be cut down and mulched into the soil to compost in the Spring. Little Seeds Farm School likes to grow mixtures of field peas, clover, vetch, oats and rye for this purpose. Cover crops are amongst the oldest methods for returning fertility to the land and we love to teach our students about the value of such heritage traditions as well as the science behind them.
The Autumn is amongst our favorite times of year at the school and there’s so much to learn from the changing rhythm of the land during this beautiful season!