Saturday, November 3, 2012

Raising heirloom lettuce this winter

The new restaurant in LaPorte that I have been supplying with garden produce has been a good thing for me here at the farm.   After I took care of my CSA customers, they took just about everything I produced. 

Steve, who puts in a little time around here every now and then, said he could rig the greenhouse so that I could raise lettuce all winter without having to use the furnace.  Okay, I thought I would give it a try. 
Trusting that this was going to work out and could perhaps provide enough income that I could move to town and keep the farm too, I approached a restaurant in LaPorte to sell them winter heirloom lettuce.  He put in an order!  The restaurant

I took the greenhouse catalog from last year and told him to pick what he wanted us to grow next season.  He said he felt like a kid in a candy store and gave us a list of about 30 items that he would like.  But right now, I have to get going with the lettuce.  I started about 3,000 seeds in seedling trays.  Today the first of the germinated lettuces were big enough to pot up into a big growing tray. 

Here are some pictures of what is happening in the greenhouse.

Barrels of water to control heat

More barrels

Planting first tray of cutting lettuce

Finished tray of cutting lettuce in water bath

Gravel around foundation to discourage mice

Organic potting soil - 58 bags!

Seedling trays on heating mats


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