apple tree blossom

Photo Update Spring 2014

Wow! Our recent weather in West Michigan has been fabulous gardening weather. Several warm, sunny days with intermittent rain. Not enough rain to keep you indoors all day, but just enough to keep me from needing the sprinkler more than once. I’m so thankful! During this previous winter I realized that I simply didn’t take enough pictures of the farm in 2013. To remedy that in 2014 I plan to, at a minimum, take photos for a spring, summer and […]

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Woman with basket of vegetables

What Now? Arcadia Farms’ New Mission

I’ve spent the last three years of my life jumping from one major change to the next. One of the biggest changes came in 2012 when I left my full time job as a Human Resources Director to start a micro-farm and CSA in my suburban backyard.  Arcadia Farms is the realization of my dream to become a farmer and an entrepreneur. The journey from HR to agriculture has been enriching in numerous aspects and is evolving in ways I […]

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2013 Farmer’s Report

At the beginning of this month I delivered the final round of produce for our 2013 season. Now that the season has ended, it’s time for me to provide you with our second annual Farmer’s Report. The annual Farmer’s Report is an exercise that helps me analyze what went well, what went wrong and – most importantly – what I’ve learned so that I can apply those lessons to improving subsequent seasons. It’s also a great way for me to […]

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ground cherry salsa

Each year I like to try my hand at growing something new. This year the list of new things included ground cherries. Ground cherries are related to tomatoes and look a lot like tomatillos. They are very sweet and come in several different shades and flavors. My nieces say that my ground cherries (Aunt Molly’s variety) smell and taste like starbursts. The sweet, fragrant smell is pleasing but I have to admit the texture is a little strange to me. […]

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garlic bulb drying

It’s garlic time! This is the first year that I’ve kept all of the garlic I have grown, so this is also the first year that I will be curing and storing garlic. I’m very excited that have been able to grow all that  we’ll need for the next year. Garlic is super easy to grow and it’s pretty straightforward to harvest and store. Here are all the details. When to Harvest Garlic In Michigan garlic is usually harvested in […]

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We’ve had strange weather this spring. It began with a sticatto pattern of unseasonably cold, rainy days (one or two)  followed abruptly by one or two unseasonably hot, dry days. As spring has morphed into early summer those rainy patches  have both  warmed and elongated. Now that the rain comes with warm weather, I don’t mind it so much because the plants love it and I don’t have to worry about irrigation. However, there have been several occasions recently when […]

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ways to cook garlic scapes

What Are Garlic Scapes Garlic scapes are the stalks and flower buds of hardneck garlic plants. In early summer, gardeners remove the scape so that the plants can focus energy on producing a larger bulb rather than creating a flower. To harvest, use a sharp knife to cut the stalk where it emerges from the base of the plant. How to Store Garlic Scapes You can refrigerate your scapes (in a paper bag) for up to a month. You can […]

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potatoes hilled with mulch

One of the most popular pages on the Arcadia Farms website is my guide to Square Foot Gardening plant spacing. Maybe as far back as a year ago a reader suggested that I also create a guide to companion planting. Companion planting is the practice of growing crops in close proximity to take advantage of beneficial relationships between specific plants… and it is one of the cornerstones of health in my garden. Some of the known companion planting relationships can […]

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Striped and spotted cucumber bugs

So far the 2014 garden is off to a great start! At the end of May I shared a summary of what’s going well and what’s not-so-swell. At that time, the garden remained relatively pest-free. However in the short time since that post I’ve encountered to more prevalent invaders. The first pest is a mysterious, large, picky eater. The invader may be a deer, although there are no signs of jumping our 8-foot tall fence and the tracks left in […]

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