Albright Farms

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Farm Diary

March 7, 2011

Caddie, Our Suffolk-punch Today while working around the farm we grafted tomato plants for green house use. We also worked fixing equipment. It was good to get back in the swing of things, seeing the greenhouses up and running.

The cattle are getting spring fever and are starting to stare at that grass on the other side of the fence hoping it was tall enough they could eat it. It's great to see the calves feeling their oats and running around playing in the barnyard.

Spring Green Up

After a couple of warm days last week the small grains (both cover crop and those which will be harvested this summer) are starting to green up and grow. It will soon be time to add fertilizer to these crops.

Last Updated on Monday, 07 March 2011 20:55
 

August 15, 2009

dad helping with seedingWhen this website starteed I thought I could keep a diary and let you know what was going on each week, although i did get pictures taken trying to keep up was impossible, so waht i am doing is trying to take pictures of a season and let you see how the year goes in our world.

In the first part of January we begin seeding for our early tomatoes as well as for our perrenials.  At this time our stand is only open on fridays, and we are attending the greenspring market twice a month. People think winter is a down time for farming, but that isn't exactly true. The cattle need to be fed and cared for daily,  manure is spread as the weather allows, and all of the machinery we use needs to be repaired and prepared for the season. We mostly work with "antiques." I'm also finishing up on all of the seed and plastic ordering for the year.

Tom and my dad built this machine that helps with the filling of the pots.

By February the cutting plants arrive and we start transplanting the started seedlings as well as the incoming cuttings. This time of year we can be in our t-shirt inside, and have to bundle up when we go out because it is below freezing outside.

As you can see we reuse/recycle about as many of the pots we can.  it takes atleast three of us to the the pots filled.  We try to do enough to get us through a week.

By early march while the greenhouses are getting busy with the flowers.  The houses are really filling up. We have to start thinking about planting the early seedlings in the greenhouse.  This is the start for our soil grown green house tomatoes.  We use bees to pollinate and we use these little waspsas a preditor to kill the white fly that is the biggest enemy of indoor tomatoes.

This is also the time we start with the first of the chicks for the season.  It will be cold and they will start indoors under heat lamps, but as soon as they get a little bigger they will go out onto the grass.

Weather permitting, by the end of March or the first of April, it is time to think about field work.   

April is the month we always hope is warm, and always ends up wet and cold.  The greenhouses are overflowing with flowers. Preparasoil grown greenhouse tomatoestions for the opening of the stand start. During this month Tom tries to get potatoes planted, and start  planting field corn. Chicks are about ready to go out.

May is the month where everything happens at once. The greenhouses are full, flower sales start, the markets start.  the green house tomatoes need to be pruned regularly, All of the produce needs to go into the field, and by memorial weekend the first of the hay needs to be baled, unless lit is like last year, when it never stopped raining.    handmade (custom design) chicken house

As you can tell I have fallen a little behind in my diary. Things were going along so well, then boom, it stopped raining, flowers started selling, it was time to start putting produce in the ground. Then by the beginning of June it was time to start cutting hay. This is the time of year when you loose track of what day and time it is. The days get filled quickly. Everything needs to be done at once, especially this year. With the wet spring it was to muddy to get in the fields early, so when it dried up everything needed to be planted two weeks earlier. Now the plants are bearing fruit. The first of the tomatoes had blossom rot due to the weather, but are beginning to pick well now.

We raised another batch of chickens.  They did quite well until this week. A storm came through and scared them. Chickens are not known to be the brightest, so when they got scared they piled up on top of each other and suffocated themselves. We lost 85 birds that day. It doesn’t make sense. They had plenty of room and shelter from the wind if they wanted it. We are not quite sure how to prevent it other than just checking on them.

If all goes well i am going to use this diary as a photo gallery of sorts to catch you all up on what we have been doing. A picture is worth a 1000 words they say. Hope you are enjoying your summer.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 19 May 2010 08:22
 

June 4, 2009

Another rainy day.  The strawberries have been coming in good. 
 

May 24, 2009

I hope everyone is having a great holiday weekend.  It has been a real busy week for us.   Next week I hope to be able to add photographs, as soon as I know how.   I took a lot pictures to show you what has been going on.  I have been busy selling flowers and helping people plan their gardens.   Tom and the men put tomatoes and zucchini in the field.  They also cut and then round baled hay at our home this week.  We will cut and bale a lot of hay in the next few weeks.  We put up about 10,000 bales a year.  This seems to be a season for flat tires.  Tom got one when he was working on the hay and another when he was bringing wood down for a project he is working on.  Saturday was the Prigel fund raiser.  The kids helped with the event and we went down after the stand closed and the truck was loaded for market.  It was heartwarming to see so many people coming out to support a farm family in need.  I think there were close to 1000 people there.  Plenty of food to eat, great band to listen to, volley ball net set up and ice cream for dessert.    Early figures show that 32,000 were raised.  If you want to know more check out at friendsoffarming.net.   

Yes we have started picking strawberries.  They are just getting going so there are not a lot of them, but each day there should be more.  You forget how much better fresh picked berries are than what you get in the store.  They really are great.  My favorite is the smaller early glows.  We grow several types of berries.  They ripen at different times so the season is extended.   The green house tomatoes are getting closer but have not started turning yet.  It will probably be another 2 weeks before we can start picking them.   We have started selling the chicken we raised.  Early feedback is positive.  We are working on a way to let you know about availability of the beef and chicken.  The best way to be sure you get what you want is to order ahead so we can be sure to have it there for you, or to be able to let you know we are out and when more  will be available.  Because we grow what we sell, we are unable to have all cuts available at all times.  I’m still collecting recipes.  I hope to add that section shortly. 

 

May 19, 2009

baby bullGreetings,

I'm working on learning how to manage this website on my own this is my first practice diary note that I have entered on my own.  I will add to it if it really does show up.  

 
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Tom Albright has been actively involved in the farm community in Baltimore County for decades.

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