Kids, Turkeys, Veggies Galore

Hello, all! Thanks for checking in. It's the busiest time of the year on the farm between all the planting, harvesting and weeding, so although we're trying to keep this thing up to date, posts may be a little thin for a while. Just bear with us and keep checking back!

At the markets this week (Krankie's on Tuesday, 10 AM to 1 PM, Dixie Classic Fairgrounds this Saturday, 6 AM) we'll have more delicious rainbow chard, white chard, green and red leaf buttercrunch lettuce and sugar snaps. Get there early or you won't get the goods, folks.

We got our turkey poults! We ordered 40, and they came in the mail as 2-day old little fuzzballs. We've lost a few sickly ones, which is to be expected but always sad anyway. Unfortunately the hatchery only refunds for those that don't make it in the first few days, so our profit loss has begun already! But when they chirp and get visibly bigger every day, it's still worth it.

In other news, we had 20+ 4-5 year olds come to the farm last Friday for a field trip! It was great. We taught them about how things grow, how we use good bugs to control the bad ones, and how to hold a turkey without squeezing the life out of it. A good time was had by all, I think. Except for maybe the turkeys...

TTD, This Week at Market

Hello, faithful friends! We had a good week last week, as we attended our first markets of the season and had great success. As I said in my last post, the Krankie's Market was all we hoped it would be, and we look forward to more and more customers there. The Dixie Classic Fairgrounds Market (Saturday, 6 AM to 12 PM) was wonderful - Jeff sold out of everything he brought, which was a lot. We welcomed familiar faces and met some new customers who we hope to make into regulars through delicious food and great service. It's the only way to do it!

Saturday was also Tomato Transplant Day (long day for poor Jeff)! The work started at noon, and the menfolk quit at 8 PM even though everything wasn't planted. We still have 6 rows to go, but the hardest parts are done. Those parts would be laying black plastic, pounding 100 t-bars into hard ground and then attaching wire fencing to them for trellising. 10 rows, each 100 feet - it's a lot of manual labor and we REALLY appreciate the help we got from Scott Jackson, who has been working with us since last season and is indispensable, and from Xavier (don't know his last name), an organist from France. Yep, France. Sugar Creek Farm's reputation is transatlantic! He is a friend of Jeff's co-worker, and told Jeff that he wanted to do some farm work before he heads back to France at the end of May. He insists that he was warned it would be a long day, and he stayed for dinner so he must not have been too mad! He was a hard worker and a lovely person to have around, so we thank him sincerely. Jeff and Scott would not have been able to get all those posts in the ground without his help, although I am sure they would have collapsed before they quit trying. A strong work ethic, those two. Below is a picture at the end of the day. Scott on the left, Jeff in the middle, Xavier on the right (at least we gave him some lettuce and eggs?). And a little pixie in the middle!

Special thanks also to Bill and BG, who helped by providing childcare, planting assistance and pizza dough!! We'll have more delicious rainbow and white swiss chard and red and green buttercrunch lettuce this week. Snap beans coming soon! See you at the market!

Season Opener

So we went to the Krankie's Market, and it was all it's cracked up to be! There were plenty of customers buying a bounty of fresh produce, transplants, meats, cheese, jams, etc. The thing is very organized, to the point that they have people there to help you unload your truck and set up your tent. A Cadillac market, if you will. I know I have said this ad nauseum, but I think it's shaping up to be a first class market. We just need more and more people there buying and supporting local growers.

In other news, Saturday is TTD (Tomato Transplant Day)!! It is pretty self explanatory, I guess, but it's the day we move our transplants from little box trays into the actual ground. Kind of like sending your child off on her first day of school, but with less talking. It will be a long day, but with the help of Scott, Bill and probably Sadie (not to mention BG and Carla in supporting roles involving childcare) we'll get it done. I love TTD - this is a GREAT time of year to be a farmer because the weather is great for being outside (not too hot), the bugs haven't really found their niches yet and all the baby plants begin to thrive. Hopefully we will be able to have a day this year when folks can come visit the farm to see what I mean; but we may have to wait for that until next year. Stay tuned!

Below are some pictures from the market; we'll be there again next week, so look for us!

Oh, well. How About Next Week?

So we decided not to go to the Krankie's Market last week as planned. We just didn't have quite enough produce to make a decent display, never mind to make it worth the time and effort it would take to go. We just made the business decision to make our debut next week with more than 3 bunches of swiss chard and a few handfuls of radishes! NEXT WEEK (Tuesday the 27th) we will be there for sure! And we will have produce for purchase. So come by and see us! FYI, it's on Patterson Avenue, just behind the Krankie's building. Not on 3rd Street as I first reported. I promise to do a better job fact-checking next time, friends.

I did go to the market last Tuesday, though, to check it out and meet some of the other vendors. Jeff and I are both really excited about this market - the people who are organizing are doing a wonderful job in every area, and we are so grateful to be part of it! I think this market will stick around, grow and be the go-to place for consumers looking for local, sustaninably grown produce. You could make a whole dinner out of what they had there - meat, eggs, bread, produce, goat cheese and some wonderful sweets (gluten-free). And, there were several other vendors who, like us, decided to wait a little before starting the season there. So it's only going to get better. I really think it's going to be great!!

My only concern is that people are going to go there looking for Jeff, who has mad skillz in the area of talking to people about the farm and making life-long customers out of them. Or at least season-long. I'm afraid they might be disappointed to see me there instead! We'll see. I'll do my best to be engaging and knowledgable, but, as we all know, I'm no Jeff. Until next time, eat local!

Welcome to Sugar Creek Farm

Welcome! I'm Betsy Tucker, co-owner of Sugar Creek Farm. I'll be using this blog to communicate with family and friends all the latest news from our farm. Each week I'll post a list of the produce we'll be bringing to the farmers' markets, as well as all the details of our fulfilling, dirty, often hilarious life on the farm. You'll get the good, the bad and the dirty - farming ain't always pretty, folks! Picture a hot day mixed with a little manure and you get the idea. But farming is always satisfying work, even on the worst days. I hope you'll like what you read, and maybe get a little inspired to spend more of your time eating or growing local food. Who doesn't want to spend more time eating?

So, let's get on with it. On Tuesday, April 20, from 10 AM until 1 PM I'll be selling buttercrunch lettuce, red leaf lettuce and swiss chard at the new and improved Krankie's Market on 3rd Street behind Winston Tower downtown. It will be the first market day of the season for us. And yep, you got it, we are adding a WHOLE NEW MARKET this year! So you can buy from us on Tuesdays at Krankie's or, as always, on Saturdays at the Dixie Classic Fairgrounds Farmer's Market. At Krankie's, they will block off 3rd Street just outside the coffee shop, but I'm not yet sure where our table will be located. Safe to say, though, that out of ten or so vendors you will be able find us. We'll have a big new sign with our awesome new logo, so come check it out along with our yummy greens! At the Fairgrounds, you will find Jeff's smiling face in the same corner spot as last year on the row closest to the Village of Yesteryear. Those of you who have been to the Dixie Classic Fair will know the village that I'm talking about. Those who have not, well, I don't even know what to say. You better go this year! Happy spring, folks!!