September 30, 2013

Harvest the Spirit

By Stowel Lake Farm

with Sue Horning & Emily Millen, September 26 – 29.
These groups always seem to be having the BEST TIME!!! I snagged these photos off their Unity Retreats website of this past retreat.
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Here is a little summary of their autumn retreat:

One of the greatest challenges of modern day living is to live harmoniously with nature and the changing seasons. Autumn is a time to harvest the bounty we grew in summer, to store and prepare for the winter ahead, and is associated with the metal element, signifying contraction and introspection, as opposed to the upwards and outwards movement of the fiery summer. It is a time to reflect, to receive what is of essential worth, and to let go of what is not useful to us.
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September 24, 2013

Noah’s Summer Photos

By Stowel Lake Farm

Noah is 12 and lives on the farm. He recently got a new camera. Here are some of his shots…
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These are some of my favourite photos from the summer. I go out and work on the farm and if I see something amazing I’ll go get my camera. Sometimes I take my camera with me if I’m going our for a walk but not always. Some of my favourite things to take photos of are birds, our chickens and life on the farm.
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A pear from Jennifer’s tree.
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Seed peas drying in the glasshouse.
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The tiller sits by the fresh tilled beds.
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Filling up David Brown.
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Preparing David Brown for making hay. (Noah Hart is 12 years old and spends most of his time out on the land or creating things with his hands.)

September 16, 2013

Fall Fair

By Stowel Lake Farm

Entering vegetables in a small town fall fair feels like it links us to the farming community of the past and the present. Admittedly it is a bit silly to try and find 6 tomatoes that are identical in shape colour and size or 8 carrots that are between 4-6 inches with matching tapers when we believe vegetables are better when they are not ‘perfect’.  That aspect aside it is fun to spend the morning before the fair choosing the best specimens and taking the time to marvel over the treasures that come out of the garden.
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remembering what we entered and gathering the best of the best…
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pretty peppers
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our green peppers won 1st!
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then of course there are the zucchini racers. This one stayed together the whole way down!
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and a few rides are always part of the fair!

September 13, 2013

Preserving

By Stowel Lake Farm

This is the time of year for drying, freezing and canning, for getting the vegetables that are coming out of the garden away for the winter. There are plans to pickle beets and beans, roast peppers and freeze pesto. These days we have all been busy processing tomatoes. Our beautiful paste varieties, Viva Italia, Roma and Maria’s, are so abundant right now, the fruits are just dripping off the vines. We take turns harvesting week to week so that everyone gets their share to put away. At the end of it all, it is so satisfying to have a shelf full of jars of your very own tomato sauce for the winter months ahead.
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The very full pot on the stove.
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Always happy to have helpers!

September 06, 2013

Potato Time

By Stowel Lake Farm

Yesterday was our community potato harvest. We all participate in the planting, growing, weeding and harvesting of this crop. This harvest day is momentous and exciting as we pull all these edible treasures from the earth. We grow Yukon Gold variety as our storage potato and they store beautifully until April! Each family/individual takes home as many as they think they can go through in the winter (this ranges from 50lbs- 300lbs!) There is something very comforting about having abundant beautiful food put away for the winter.
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We harvested about 1500lbs this year! The back of our truck was very full.
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We use the chisels to loosen the potatoes and then dig with our hands. This way there is no damage from the digging forks.
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Definitely a group effort!
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Young barefoot farmers
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A bed of potatoes.

September 02, 2013

Being Moved

By Stowel Lake Farm

We happily hosted Bettina Rothe & Joanne Winstanley again this August. They brought 5Rhythms to the farm through a beautifully deep and inspiring retreat. The focus was “being moved’ – how to move more easily in the currents of life and cultivate openness to a state of flow. A few of us “farmies” got to partake in the offerings and Haidee was in the kitchen serving up her culinary creations to this energetic and loving group of folks. We were so grateful to have you all here!