Farm Report – May 11

Farm Report – May 11

Week of May 11, 2015

Abbreviated Weekly Farm Report

From Friendship Farms & Fare

A Community Service To the Local Farming Community

For the full Farm Report, go to:

For those keeping up with details on the project, the May 4 report is also available: See:

Seedings: Okra (Red Burgundy, 28; Hill Country Red 18), Pepper (Charleston Belle,53; Carolina Wonder, 89)

Garden Starts: okra, sweet potatoes

Harvest Notes:  herbs, arugula, collards, kale, eggplant, cucumbers, okra

Vermipost: none

First Okra Harvest

May 8, 2015

We harvested our first okra pods on Friday – only about half a pound, but healthy looking fruit. There will probably not be much more in the coming week, but there are plenty of flowers everyday and a good quantity of developing pods.

New Trees in New South Grove

We acquired six fruit trees from Green Dreams Farm and Nursery. To see all that is going on at Green Dreams, go to: 

The trees were installed on May 4. We located them in areas that would benefit from shade, and to replace two of the kumquats that had perished. Our new trees are as follow: 2 Florida Peaches, 2 Mangos, 1 Barbados Cherry, 1 Florida Plum. The new plantings will augment and diversify our food forest, and create shade for the new beds in the new south garden.

Garden Overview

Spring Plantings Continue

(additional details and assessments follow)

We continue to compost winter plants, refresh the beds, and plant summer crops. The above normal temperatures are challenging to the young plants, and they make seed germination a bit more difficult.

We’ve cleared and remulched most of the south beds and planted with okra and sweet potatoes (Beauregards and Georgia Jets).

Cucumbers are continuing to do well, although we did find pickle worms in some.

Eggplant shrubs are budding profusely, starting to set fruit. We included a dozen eggplant in last week’s shares.

If anyone reading this, would like to help with the SP plantings, just let us know. Thanks to those who have helped thus far. We’ll put in our next order this week.

If you would like SP slips, let us know. We’ll share for .50 per slip.

We still have large quantities of collards.

See the Share Report for all items.

For all plantings, we use seeds from our collection or heirloom seeds from Seed Savers Exchange (

First and Second Sweet Potato Beds Planted

269 slips planted

We planted 87 of the 100 new slips, bringing our total to 269 in ten beds: the two new south beds (East and West), the Old South bed, and old beds 2, 4, 5, 7, 10, 11, and 12.

We’ll order our next set of slips within the week.


½ pound

As noted above, we harvested our first okra pods this week – about ½ a pound. Most of the early plants have flowers every day and a good number of small pods. Several plants are over a foot tall.

Predation is relatively light, and not a concern. It toughens the plants, and these plants are the decedents of plants that were nibbled and gnawed and partially eaten by every okra-loving insect in the area. They can take it. This is the way it is done in a permaculture system. The plants are stronger for the predation, and the predators themselves become prey of carnivorous creatures – but only if you leave them on the plants.

If you read this far in the newsletter, let us know if you would be interested in attending an Okra Festival – probably in mid-June.


35 Harvested

Cucumbers are thriving. The most successful are the Japanese Climbing. We have planted Double Yields, Armenians, Japanese Climbing, and Nippon Sanjaku Kiuri. They are growing in all gardens with those in the blackberry colony doing the best. We’ve harvested 9 this past week , bringing total to 35.

Several in the recent harvest had pickle worms. We pulled those for domestic use. If your cucumbers had pickle worms, we apologize. Organic hazard! None of the climbing cucumbers vining among the blackberries had pickle worms.

We have seedlings, if any one desires: $2.00 each, 2 for $3.00, 4 for $5.00.


Last call for kale. It is not listed in the share report, but if you’d like some of this end of season kale, we can accommodate you.


Arugula is past peak. We won’t be listing it this week.


The collards continue thrive – as hardy now as in mid-winter. Please stop by for extra large shares of our three varieties, Georgia Southern, Georgia, and Vates, are large, lush, and ready for harvest. 


Ouachita Family

The blackberry vines flowering profusely, and the first immature berries are appearing. These are Ouachita Blackberries shared lovingly by Christine Grovenstein of Seeds of Love Organic Farm.

Habanero Peppers

Habaneros are coming back very nicely now, and bearing abundant blossoms – and the first fruits.


14 Eggplants are now flourishing, producing flowers, and first fruits! We’ve harvested 14 so far this young season.

You may order eggplant this week, but we may not have any that are large enough to harvest.

Viticulture (Grape) News

Vines are putting out first leaves – and the first tiny bunches.

Seed Savers Seeds Available Through Friendship Farms & Fare

Please buy your seeds and seedlings from local growers or suppliers committed to organic, heirloom seeds.

3F is pleased to offer the highest quality organic, heirloom seeds to the community. You may order several locally-acclimated seeds from our own collection as well as Seed Savers seeds from us. Seed Savers seeds are the only ones we use at Friendship Farms, unless we use our own 3F seeds saved from previous years. This year 3F is offering these locally-acclimated seeds: okra (4 varieties), broccoli, and arugula.

If you’d like to order Seed Savers seeds form us, find the seeds you desire online, let us know the type(s) and quantities, and we’ll order them for you.

Cost: $4.00 per packet ($3.00 for shares). We’ll include them in your share or mail them to you, if you give us your address.

Please buy your seeds and seedlings from local growers or suppliers committed to organic, heirloom seeds.

See this story on the damage caused by “big box stores”:

See also, 10 reasons to support local commerce:


Visit the Friendship Farms & Fare website for the Weekly Farm Report:!report/c1tuh

Friendship Farms & Fare is a branch of Ecology Florida, a not-for-profit corporation. Contributions to Friendship Farms & Fare and Ecology Florida are tax deductible. To learn more about Ecology Florida, please visit the website:

If you would like to support our mission and individual projects, you may share donations through our website (above) or at our mailing address:

Ecology Florida

PO Box 596

New Port Richey, FL 34656-0596

Friendship Farms & Fare reaffirms, restores, and advances agrarian ideals to reestablish a sustainable culture

Natural, Economic, Cultural…bringing three ecologies together to regenerate a resilient future for all.

PO Box 596 ● New Port Richey, Florida 34656-0596

Ecology Florida advances the harmonious integration of healthy natural, cultural, and economic ecologies to regenerate a sustainable world

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