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Diary of Mike Garver - Garver Family Farm Market , Week 3, August 15-21, 2011

Published Aug. 22, 2011 | Discuss this article on Facebook

August 15

Had a disappointing harvest this morning with sweet corn.  The crop has been steady up till this point. The lack of ample rain has slowed down the maturity of plant.  I've spent much time and energy planting this crop to ensure a steady Summer supply, but things that look good on paper don't always follow suit.  Scratched my head and brainstormed on where to get corn for wholesale orders.  

Very tired and run down but the weather is very pleasant.  Sent the crew out to harvest cantaloupe. Seems like things tend to even themselves out.  Yes, not always, big smile on my face when I saw seven bins of the most beautiful cantaloupe roll into the barn.  Still worried about the sweet corn situation but was relieved to see the later harvest.  Now not only still thinking about the sweet corn but also on how to turn these cantaloupe into dollars.

No problem.  Only about an hour on and off the phone and most of the cantaloupe have been sold and I found some homegrown corn up North.  Things don't always work out this way.  There have been times in the past when I have had trouble selling crops due to over supply.

Spent the rest of the day scouting fall crops.  A grower has to evaluate crops growing for pests and disease.  This is so important because these threats can take a crop down real quick.

August 16

There is not a day that goes by that I don't think about Bob Neidermann.  Bob has cancer and I know he is going to be cured.  He is going into the hospital this week for a long term treatment.  I wanted to visit with him before he left, but I was a day late.  I'll text him in a week or so to see how he is doing.

Heavy harvest on tomatoes today.  You have to keep up on tomatoes or they will go to waste.  I will be spending the rest of the day assembling producst for the WIC program for Wednesday and Thursday. 

August 17

Anticipated a very busy day for the WIC market in Hamilton and I was right.  We sold a lot of  our product and the day went by very quick.  When my wife and I returned, we did our routine for the next day which would be in Middletown.  We are working 14 hour days this time of year.  Time goes by to quickly.  Most of the time our job is not routine, but then again sometimes it is.  Labor Day is just around the corner.  This is when we transform our market into Fall products.  Anyways enough with the tangent topic. We had a great day and hope for another one for Thursday.

August 18

Slow and boring could not even describe our business at Middletown.  We really thought we would do as well as in Hamilton, but  I think the weather had something to do with business.  Could not wait until three o'clock so we could pack up and head for home. Once we got back to the farm, we loaded up the trailer for West Chester for the next day.  There is always something to look forward to for the next day.  Rain would be a nice thing, but it never seems to come.  Scouted the pumpkins and found aphids.   OOOOOHHHH......   These little tiny pest will suck the juice out of any plant to their death.  The bad thing is we have had very little moisture and now I have insects stressing plants.  That's not good. 

August 19

Had a record setting day in West Chester.  Not a good record.  It would be the slowest day we have ever had.  Kids are going back to school and I think buying fresh produce is the farthest thing on peoples mind.  Started spraying pumpkins for the bug problem and taking wholesale orders.  Gearing up for the weekend.  Several acres of sweet corn could be harvested, but why pick unless there is a buyer. It is great to have a bountiful harvest, but if there is not a buyer its all for nothing.  I had to make phone calls to pull this off.  Went to get our moble trailer at the Cone and closed our main market.  I then continued to spray pumpkins.

August 20       

I am glad the lights work on the tractor because we were bringing in corn to be processed long before the sun came up.  It was actually foggy outside.  I could not even see the lights on the building at the farm when I was at the north end of the property.  We ended up harvesting about 1300 dozen ears of corn. It gets better,  cantaloupe harvest was almost record setting as well.  We almost ran out of plastic bins to hold produce.  We pulled over 1000 cantaloupe.  That is great, but once again I have to find a home for this produce.

August 21       

Delivered  some product to Jungle Jim's first thing this Sunday morning.  There is a good chance of rain today.  I would like to have a rainy day even if it would curtail business.  We heavily rely on rain to make our crops grow.  Spent the rest of the day helping running our market. I really enjoy meeting and talking with our customers.  It makes me feel good when people are appreciative of what we do at our farm.  The rain never came.  Oh well, there is always next time.

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