Bowdoin Organic Garden

Early July Update

Story posted July 28, 2011

What's Cool

Our potato plants (about 350 row feet of them) are looking great, with minimal Colorado Potato Beetle damage due to good rotation and careful scouting.  We've been harvesting beautiful lettuce heads (Pirat, Black Seeded Simpson, and New Red Fire) for about 4 weeks now.  We had the biggest asparagus harvest yet this year, cutting from our 150' of 3-year-old plants.  Transplanted beets and spinach are also doing very well, and have taught us a good lesson about transplanting versus direct seeding.  We have had a steady stream of volunteer help this season so far, from Bowdoin students to friends to community members to Bowdoin faculty and staff to Upward Bound students.  We would be much farther behind if it weren't for all their help!

What's New

Our intern this year is Alex Thompson, a rising junior from Freeport, Maine.  He loves to fish, build things and squash bugs!  He is a tremendous help and a humorous, useful adition to the BOG.  Our plot at Wolfe's Neck Farm is new and equally fun and exciting as it is daunting.  We have over 1500' of winter squash out there (Winter Luxery, Polar Bear, New England Pie, Marina di Chioggia, Galeaux, Reba, Delicata, Butternut, Carnival, Long Island Cheese), as well as 600' of garlic that is scaping now, about 400' of leeks and 200' of onions, corn for drying and grinding, giant sunflowers for seeds, and some black turtle dry beans.  The fertility out there is top notch, but so are the weeds.  We've been spending every spare minute weeding between our carefully mulched rows and even between the plants where the weeds find a way up.  If only we had an army of 20 people, we could tackle them all in a day!

What's Challenging

Early summer has brought a mix of thunderstorms and hot, sunny days, though the hot/wet pattern means the weeds everywhere are tough to tackle.  Bugs have been more prolific than normal this year as well, with the striped cucumber beetle, tarnished plant bug, and potato leaf hopper among the worst offenders.

What's Getting Harvested Right Now

Arugula, beet greens, mustard greens, kale, chard, kohlrabi, radishes, cilantro, parsley, basil, lettuce heads, lettuce mix, rhubarb, asparagus, chives, thyme, oregano, sage, savory and peas.

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