At Hart Farm we believe in creating an opportunity for people to connect to the land, to the their work and to others.  It is important for people to come together and share their experience and their labor, we believe it builds a stronger community.  For this reason, Hart Farm holds open volunteer days on Thursdays and Fridays.  On these days anyone who is interested, curious or eager to help out may join us in the field.  On these days we will be harvesting, weeding, planting and doing farm projects.  It is great to have new people join in and share their knowledge and experience as well as their stories and jokes!

If you are ever interested in stopping by feel free to shoot us an email at conwayhartfarm@gmail.com.  We’d love to see you soon!

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Julia and Louise planting beans
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Nora weeding the hoop house
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Jeanie stops by for a visit and helps us with weeding
Jeff and Julia plant cabbage
Jeff and Julia plant cabbage
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Richard and Jeff building the chicken tractor

ImageThe chickens are here!  After much anticipation, 59 Rhode Island Red and Isa Brown laying hens now inhabit the chicken tractor.  The chickens are young, between 16-18 weeks old (we like to think of them as teenagers), which means that they will be laying their first eggs in the next few weeks.  Once they are producing, we will expect about 35 dozen eggs from them a week.  Their eggs will be sold at local farmers markets, at our farm stand and to the NYC box share.

Even in the adjustment period after their recent arrival, it is clear that these birds are happy and healthy.  Their movable coop allows them to range free and graze all over the orchard while simultaneously fertilizing the soil for later plant production.  They are being fed local, non GMO grain and compost and of course, they have very nice humans taking care of them.

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And now, we wait for eggs!

You  can now sign up in advance for Hart Farm’s NYC Box Shares!

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In anticipation for the growing and market season, Hart Farm would like to set up the NYC box share program and sign you up as soon as possible.  Although it is 2 months in advance, we would like to implement our sign up now in order to best prepare the program and for you to get a share before they are all taken!
Here are the details:

  • Box shares will hold a large assortment of vegetables, cooking herbs, seasonal fruits, 1 dozen eggs, 1 prepared good (i.e. pickles/jam/maple syrup), 1 bouquet of flowers and artisanal bread. Meat from Sage Farm on Hart Rd. and other local friends’ farms will be available at an additional cost on request.
  • Box shares will be delivered to your home!  Deliveries will happen on Sundays.  The first delivery will be on June 15th.
  • Once you have signed up and pre-paid for your box we will contact you with a general time when the drop off will be made to your house.
  • Each box share costs $75. 
  • We offer a loyalty membership to those who can commit to all 4 months of box share deliveries (June, July, August, September).  Members will receive a 10% discount.

 
To sign up for the first delivery or the whole season please supply your contact information by visiting https://conwayhartfarm.com/nyc-box-share-program/  .  Feel free to contact us at conwayhartfarm@gmail.com with any questions.

The snow has thawed, maple sugaring has ended, the sun is out and there is now so much to do! Now that spring has sprung many projects are underway at Hart Farm.  The hoop house, where we will be planing early greens, tomatoes and other delights will be up and running very soon.  The chicken tractor for our 75 chickens is being designed and started this week.  Most importantly, our vegetables are starting to grow!  With 15 seed trays germinating and our first direct seeding of peas in the ground, we almost forgot to notice that the GARLIC has started to peak their little shoots out of the ground!  Last fall we planted 13lbs of organic soft neck and hard neck garlic and will be enjoying it later this summer. 

Here are some pictures to give you a good visual of what has been going on:

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Over the past few weeks the first seed trays have been started.  Even though the cold weather is persistent, a controlled indoor climate has allowed for our purple scallions, parsley, lacinato kale, cabbage and lettuce to begin to germinate — not to mention a handful of flower varieties too.

We are thankful to the Elwell’s at Spring Water Farm in Ashfield who have generously lent out their greenhouse space for Hart Farm’s seed starts.

scallions germinating

 

The buckets are up, the wood is stacked, the pan is cleaned and boiling shall commence!  Over the past few days we have been working hard to get everything dialed in as we start to watch the sap flow from the trees.  Today there are approximately 20 gallons of sap out there, which when boiled,will turn into half a gallon of syrup (more or less).Image

We are very grateful for all the help from friends and family who have come up to lend a hang in tapping trees, stacking wood and plowing snow.  Sugaring season is the funnest when thecommunity is involved and it feels like a party!Image

old holes

Sugaring season can be so poignant! With a focus to each individual tree, we can see the history and time-line of every one. Old tap holes heal and “travel” up the tree as the trunk grows. It is a reminder that people have been using the natural resources around them for many decades before.

This specific tree has been tapped for maple sugaring for at least 20 years (that I can remember).

As I watch the snow fall incessantly out my window, as beautiful as it is, today I can’t help but feel a tad bit sick of winter.  What gets me through, is knowing that maple sugaring season is just around the corner!  Over the past week, in attempts to make the season come faster, I have picked up a half cord of wood for burning, I have cleaned out the sugar shack nice and good and bought a few new supplies that will help the process flow better this year.

Last year was Hart Farm’s inaugural sugaring season.  And how fun it was!  After 4 or so weeks of collecting sap with friends, learning how to split wood “efficiently” and boiling away, we entered spring with 3 gallons of sweet, delicious, GOLD!

I sincerely look forward to do it all again with anyone/everyone who wants to come up to the farm and help out or just hang out and drink a beer.  All are welcome!

Here is something to get us pumped:

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Freezing nights and warm days are what sets off the sugaring season.