Poplin Farms

albemarle, nc

What fresh hell is this?

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Does it seem like I’m complaining a lot lately? Well something is eating/ate the sweet potato plants, you can’t even see anything in the picture. How ya like that picture of dirt? Nice pic. Thanks. Based on the evidence I think it’s a dynamic duo of mice and deer.

We planted sweet potatoes slips on Monday, June 8. I know this because on Saturday the 6th I went to my neighbor Carl’s, of Carlea Farms, to pick them up and to see their newborn piglets. We found the mommy pig Wanda had died, within like the past 3 hours since he last checked on her. Heartbreak! So, then there’s not even time to wonder what happened or to be sad because there are 14 newborn babies to figure out how to feed, what to feed, how to get them situated and all that.  I visited them this week and they’re all healthy and super adorable.

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I just came in from digging German Butterball potatoes for tomorrow’s market! The Butterless Potato! A delicious yellow fleshed heirloom. Shane helped me, now he’s gone to bale alfalfa and since there are storms coming he’ll have to pick it all up out of the field tonight and take it to the barn (he usually does that part in the morning) so I don’t expect him to be home til midnight.

I’ll be at the Charlotte Regional Farmer’s Market tomorrow, June 27. Here’s what I’ll have–

Veggies: Butterball potatoes, heirloom tomatoes including Brandywine, Cherokee Purple, Azoychka Russian, Bloody Butcher, green giant and more! Cherry tomatoes mix, 3 kinds of okra, 5 kinds of cukes, lemon squash and zephyr squash, sweet potatoes, Tuscan garlic, kale, red and sweet onions, a few savoy cabbages, I can’t even remember what else.

Beef: hot dogs, beer brats, pastrami, corned beef and bologna all made from our beef with no added nitrates or nitrites. We’re almost out of dogs. Ground beef, stew meat, short ribs, oso bucco, liver, soup bones, bone-in chuck, sirloin tip roast, eye of round, sirloin steaks, NY Strips, ribeyes, filets, skirt and flank.

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I begged a hay truck and flatbed trailer from Shane to cure onions. So there’s a wagon, a trailer, 2 flatbed trailers and a hay truck covered in onions. Every night I put them to bed in the empty hoop house in case of rain and every morning I pull them back out into the breezy shade.

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The red ones are amazing on the grill.

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Asian cukes make adorable pickle chips.

See you tomorrow!

 

 

Do Not Let Your Children Be Farmers

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It’s a mad rush to get all the wheat cut, the wheat straw baled and hauled out of the field, and then soybeans planted back.  We got an inch and a half of rain last night so all that’s on hold.

I’ll be at the Charlotte Regional Farmers Market tomorrow, and I have lemon cucumbers!

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But I don’t have those fairytale eggplant that are also in the photo so don’t come to my table all excited for eggplant.

I think they’re the most delicious of all the cukes I’ve grown. In true organic fashion the plants are already starting to die off just as they start making fruit. Sigh.

Market Stuff

Veggies:  tomatoes, cucumbers – lemon,  crystal apple, Asian, mini white and regular slicers. Lemon squash and zephyr squash, fennel bulb, beets, 3 super cool kinds of okra; kale, sweet and red onions, cutting celery, savoy cabbage, sweet potatoes and I don’t even know what else.

Beef: Angus hot dogs, beer brats, pastrami, sliced corned beef, bologna (all without nitrates or nitrites) , ground beef, stew, cube steak, philly steak, short ribs, brisket, liver, soup bones, osso bucco.
Steaks: filet, ribeye, NY strip, sirloin, and flank.
Roasts: eye of round, bone-in chuck, sirloin tip

It’s been way too dry here, then last night we got a bad storm with a lot of wind and some hail, and straight up cats and dogs. 1 1/2″ of rain in less than an hour.

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Know what that is? It’s nothing. It WAS my super beautiful,  non-GMO heirloom sweet corn that I have so much invested in, including the last of my saved seed.  Including soil test, hand weeding, cultivating, organic ammendments. I was so proud of it, and it was just starting to tassle.

Last night’s storm blew it down so now it’s just nothing.

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Know what that is? THAT is a dog that is super stressed out because mommy won’t stop looking over at the corn field and throwing things and yelling bad words.

Dijon Roasted Cabbage. Find out why my 91 year old Gramma G. got hooked on it when I made it for her.

 

 

 

 

 

Market Stuff for June 13.

a row of cucumbers on a trellis behind a row of squash

trellised  cucumbers  behind a row of squash

All across the world, thousands of organic squash plants are dying EVERY DAY because no one sprayed them for bugs. Or they used some kind of natural crap that doesn’t work.
NOW is the time to act!
Ok look. I have 12 gallons of squash and more than that of cucumbers. Before you know it all the organic squash will be gone from the farmers’ market.
I just made this easy SUMMER SQUASH TACO CASSEROLE
I added a layer of cooked cabbage and onions between the squash and ground beef. I also used like 12 times the amount of squash it called for.
We loved it, I’ll make it again.
Or these easy grilled squash roll-ups with goat cheese (or cream cheese) I discovered last year. Obviously using zephyr squash instead of  zucchini.

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Refrigerator pickles are SO easy and super healthy.
Dissolve 1 Tb sea salt in a little warm water in a quart jar, and pack it with cucumbers cut to your liking. Add half a cup of Bragg’s Organic apple cider vinegar, a hot pepper if you like, some herbs, a smashed garlic clove or 2, top it off with water. Marinate 2-3 days in the fridge.

Did you know that summer squash is a nutrient dense food?
How ’bout some manganese, vitamin C, magnesium, potassium and more PLUS all different varieties of carotenoids!!
Ward off that macular degeneration. Perhaps regulate your insulin. Put the smackdown on inflammation.

Crispy crunchy cucumbers have flavonoids, lignans and triterpenes. That’s protection against cardiovascular disease, multiple cancers AND free radicals plus you get the molybdenum. Need that.

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I’ll be at the Charlotte Regional Farmers Market tomorrow.

Veggies this week:
fennel bulbs, beets, savoy cabbage
zephyr squash and lemon squash
cukes: slicers, Asian, mini whites
Red Creole heirloom onions and sweet onions.
Kale: dwarf blue, red russian, rainbow lacinato and regular (black) lacinato, sweet potatoes,
purple basil, cutting celery, parsley, and a few more.

Beef:
hot dogs, beer brats, pastrami, sliced corned beef, bologna, ground beef, stew, cube steak, philly steak, short ribs, brisket, liver, soup bones, osso bucco.

Steaks:
filet, ribeye, NY strip, sirloin, flat iron, skirt and flank.
Roasts: eye of round, bone-in chuck, sirloin tip

Market Stuff for June 6!

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Veggies this week:

Mini white and Asian cukes, beets, zephyr squash, lemon squash, red onions and sweet onions, cutting celery,
Kale: dwarf blue, red russian, rainbow lacinato and regular (black) lacinato, chard, sweet potatoes,
freshly dug uncured Siciliano garlic – artichoke variety, it’s the last week I will have uncured garlic.
Purple basil, dill umbrels for pickles!

Beef:
hot dogs, beer brats, pastrami, sliced corned beef, bologna, ground beef, stew, cube steak, philly steak, short ribs, brisket, liver, soup bones, osso bucco.

Steaks:
filet, ribeye, NY strip, sirloin, flat iron, skirt and flank.
Roasts: eye of round, bone-in chuck, sirloin tip

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lemon squash.

See you tomorrow!

fresh (uncured) garlic!

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May 15, 2016.

For the farmers market this week:

I have freshly dug, uncured garlic. You can only get this in the spring you know. After that it’s all cured garlic. This week I have Tuscan, a turban variety, which means all the cloves are the same size. No tiny interior cloves to try to peel. Turbans are my fave.

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I have red, black, blue and rainbow kale. All the colors! Also have chard, sweet potatoes and herbs + our beef:

hot dogs, beer brats, pastrami, sliced corned beef, bologna, ground beef, stew, cube steak, short ribs, brisket, liver, soup bones, osso bucco.
Steaks: filet, ribeye, NY strip, sirloin, flat iron
Roasts: eye of round, bone-in chuck, sirloin tip

 

Well I have spent a ton of money this year on organic soil ammendments. I’m really hoping that I get a return on that. I just feel like I have to, to keep it balanced. Every crop removes nutrients and minerals so if you don’t put all that back, then what? It seems like it would be a slow downward spiral with the flavor and quality, and pests and weeds. And yield.

Take boron for example. Just one of about 5 elements I needed to add. I was suprised to find out that I needed 12 lbs of boron added to a 1/3 acre field. But apparently it’s so essential to plants that if they are deficient, they will continue to have *undifferentiated* cell division in their growing tips that causes them to keep growing bigger leaf tips where they would normally have *differentiated* cell division creating more stems, flowers, etc. Yikes that sounds terrible! No stems means stunted plants and no flowers means no fruit.
THAT’S SCIENCE PEOPLE.

Market Stuff for March 27, 2015

spring greens

Can you believe I didn’t even edit that photo?
Those are the real colors. Stunning. Nature just keeps blowing my mind.

Anyway that photo is just a teaser for next week. I don’t have any of that stuff this week.
But I have tons of other stuff for this week! I really hope you all come out. I’m putting tomatoes in the hoop house next week so I cut EVERYTHING that was in there to bring to market, or else it would be tilled in.

I have baby collards and collard raab, red russian kale,  kale raab, a few sneaky leeks, cilantro, thyme, sage,  chard, spinach, arugula, sweet potatoes.

kale raab

Last weekend my dad came to visit and he always wants burgers and dogs, so I made kale raab and sweet potato fries to go with them. He kind of choked down the raab so I would shut up but my sister went crazy over it. Like she was shocked that such a thing even existed. It’s so good! Have you tried it? Opportunity is knocking people. Raab time doesn’t last forever.

Beef:
ground, stew, cube steak, short ribs, osso bucco, liver, soup bones, hot dogs, beer brats, bologna, pastrami
Roasts: sirloin tip, bone-in chuck, eye of round
Steaks: filet, ribeye, NY strip, sirloin, flank, skirt, flat iron.

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I got 792 transplants put in on Tuesday. By the time I was at around 700 the only thing keeping me going was the grapefruit margarita waiting at the end.

 

Market Stuff for March 21, 2015

I’ll be at the Charlotte Regional Farmers Market on Saturday. Here’s what I’m bringing:

Veggies:
beautiful lettuce leaf basil pots, curly kale, red russian kale, spinach, kale raab(!!), sweet potatoes, herbs, some cabbage transplants and I would have collards except I spent like an hour hunting for aphids in the hoop house to feed to the baby praying mantises that just hatched in the greenhouse! Check them out on my facebook post.

The ONE YEAR I don’t have any bug pests in the greenhouse is of course the year some praying mantises hatch in there so will probably starve to death. SAD FACE. I really like praying mantises. I think the plural is TECHNICALLY mantids.

Beef:
ground, cube steak, stew beef, short ribs, osso bucco, liver, soup bones
Roasts – bone-in chuck, sirloin tip, eye of round
Steaks – flank, skirt, flat iron, sirloin, filet, NY Strip, ribeye
Hot dogs, beer brats, pastrami, bologna

The pigs are HUGE. I can’t believe how fast they grow, like compared to cows. I was telling my auntie about how they are so cute, when I call them they come running as fast as they can. Like racing pigs! They jump big logs and spin out around corners and run around in circles hopping and spinning like bucking bulls.
But they’re kind of obnoxious at feeding time, pushing me with their hard snouts and sometimes I think they might bite my knees. One night they knocked me over and I landed on one of them. They’re super solid and sturdy though, you couldn’t budge one if you tried. Then another time I got my boot tangled in the electric netting and I fell in the mud. Bahaha! They descended upon me quickly but were just fighting over the feed.

My auntie said, when my mom was working as a home health nurse where you go to peoples’ homes and take care of them, she had to bandage this older man’s feet. She asked him what happened to his feet and he said he fell down in the pig lot and the pigs ATE HIS TOES. They. ate. his. toes. off.
Daaaaaaang. I guess it’s all fun and games until somebody falls down.

onion transplants

My sister came on Tuesday and we got the onions set out in 7 1/2 hours. I was SO relieved, but now I’m back to panicking because it’s way too wet to set out the kale, cabbage, cauli and broc plants and more rain coming.

AND a super delicious recipe for Beef Stroganoff. Some brandy, a little sour cream, sliced mushrooms – nom nom.
I used ground beef instead of steak.

Happy Birthday Moo!

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Go Moo! It’s your birthday! Awww…he’s a New Year’s baby.

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That forlorn-looking dog in the background got robbed of his coat. Sorry boy. He was a frail little guy that almost didn’t make it, and 7 years later –  a giant beastie!

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Our first piglets!

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Sadly I haven’t made any headway with getting them to wear outfits and they also are very opposed to any PDA, sigh. They do however appreciate sweet potatoes   and love any kind of bitter greens.

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