No doubt this growing season has been a challenge. If we based our growing season on the previous year we would have geared for dry, hot weather, but that didn't happen. So on a relatively dry day in July, the conference of Kentucky extension agents visited the farm to see what we're doing. The conference is held in various areas around the state every year. When Northern Kentucky was decided on for 2013, the agent for Kenton County organized a visit to Red Sunflower Farm. It became a learning opportunity for both the agents and us at the farm.
For the weeks prior to the visit we spent 80% of our time knee-deep in weeds, a common issue exacerbated by the unyielding rains. Just prior to the agents showing up, we had completed mulching with leaf mold from a local municipality.
Questions volleyed between our team and the agents regarding the best way to keep weeds down, to build high tunnels, to lay bedding for roads. We told them about maple syrup production, a distant thought in the middle of summer. Our chickens and the careful way we free range them feeding them non-GMO products was a source of whispered, side conversations, because, while the agents are available to help with organic farming, they also tend to conventional farming as well, some not buying into the idea that our food source must be chemical free.
We're proud of our high tunnel and the produce that has come from it. The agents were very interested in its use on Red Sunflower Farm .
Touring the berry patch, covered with netting to keep the birds out.
Jedi and the rest of us were happy to entertain the extension agents, satisfied that when they loaded up the caravan to visit the next farm, that we'd welcomed them with the hospitality we extend to all visitors. Until the next time...