Best wishes for the Easter Break! The long evenings and brighter mornings have put the spring in everyone’s step around the farm these past few weeks. We have our very own new spring lamb in the household – Una has given birth to a baby boy and we are all absolutely delighted. She has now stepped back from farm related work until 2018 and we have a great team of staff here who are sharing out the workload while she is on leave.
We are very excited for the annual Galway Food Festival this Easter Weekend 21st – 23rd April. As with the past few years, we will have our own stall in the food market down on the Spanish Arch. Pop in to meet with Caitriona, Steve, and Trish over the weekend. It is always great fun, and we have our fingers crossed that the weather stays good.
Winter crops are coming to an end, and the kale; turnips; parsnips and new leaf crops from the tunnels are coming along nicely! The salad leaf is bursting with flavor and we have an excellent mix of mustard; mizuna; and mibuna leaf in the bag. These crops make for a great mix in the box and shop orders.
We will start the 1st plantings of crops with red lettuce, scallions, beetroot, chard, cabbage, and early onions to be planted out in the top field this week. And this season we are taking a lease on 28 acres of land at Aughrim Ballinasloe, which will allow us to double production over the next two years. The new land will enable us to grow a wider range of crops and to extend the Irish season for Organic grown vegetables.
This year we are using a biodegradable film to plant the crops through. Weeding and weeds are a big challenge when growing vegetables organically. Over the years, we have used flame weeders; brush weeders; harrows; hoes; and even good old fashioned hand weeding to deal with them. This “folie mulch”, as it’s known in Holland, will cut down on weeding, warm up the soil underneath, and will give us cleaner crops at the time of harvest. We will keep you posted on the progress!
Until next time, wishing you the very best,
Padraig and the Beechlawn Team