As the long dark days of winter come to a close some people may think we’re kicking back and taking it easy this time of year. While it’s true winter is not as crazy as the rest of the year, there’s still plenty to keep us busy.

During the 2022 growing season we faced a jungle of weeds in our gardens. Talking to other local farmers, they too said they faced some of the worst weed pressure they’d seen in their many years of farming. Since we’ve had several requests from individuals and local groups and organizations to tour our farm, we decided before we offered farm tours, we need to have weed-free walk paths.

Loren and our youngest grandson, Jonathan, and granddaughter Grace laid weed fabric in the designated walk paths. To limit tripping hazards on the fabric, we ordered 105 yards of sawdust from a local mill, and Loren and the kids spread wheelbarrow and bucket loads of sawdust over the fabric to make fairly smooth paths between our planting rows. A ton of work, but our fields look great, and more important will prove easier to navigate for visitors to the farm.

Last fall, our oldest son, Ben hauled in four dump truck loads of chicken fertilizer from a local farm. Loren and Jonathan added the fertilizer to the new 3’x50’ raised beds they built in the north greenhouse. They also used the nitrogen-rich fertilizer to amend the soil of other growing areas on the farm. Then Loren ordered 28 yards of certified organic compost from Lenz Enterprises in Stanwood to top-off the beds and help alleviate weed pressure.

In the middle of our winter work, Ben & Amanda surprised us when they invited us to join them on their annual trip to California. Excited to getaway, we could relax and enjoy our trip knowing granddaughter’s Charity and Grace came daily to check on and water the thousands of seedlings and plants growing in our greenhouses.

We had loads of fun and laughs, flying around curves at 60 miles an hour on the Cars ride, in the land where dreams come true!

Some of the other winter chores we’re checking off our list include pruning fruit trees, cleaning and sharpening our clippers, an essential tool, and mending gates among many other jobs.

Cleaned and sharpened clippers at Silver Maple Farm

Cleaned and sharpened!

With spring right on our heels, Loren and I are plotting out the last of our planting beds for the 2023 season. Finally, we’re putting the finishing touches on a special farm project to benefit our gardening customers. We’ll unveil this big surprise on our website and our farm Facebook page before we open in May.

Until then ~ All the best to our customers!
See you soon!

Loren & Kathy

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