Welcome to summer officially. Although yesterday was the first day of summer, it has felt like summer for a while. I was thinking about how many days we hit 90 last year and my gut tells me that we may have already passed the number of 90 degree last year.
The biggest thing I notice about the heat is how fast the weeds grow with it so hot. We’ve had a couple weekends where it has been over 90 and the weeds much grow at least 6 inches over those couple of days. Entire beds of plants can disappear in a mat of weeds over a weekend. I am a little worried about our potatoes getting lost in weeds this year. I’ve been out there twice trying to cultivate, but it could be a tough year for them. Here the weed seed bank is not as high nor is the fertility of the soil as high so we can stay on top of it a little better. That being said I think we lost a planting of carrots already…
While the weeds go faster, we do not go faster. The hot days sap so much energy out of us. It is amazing how much more tired I will feel after a 90 degree day than a 80 degree day. For example, today (Tuesday) is not too bad and we have been able to move at a pretty good pace. However, yesterday was so hot we were all so slow at the end of the day.
Another problem with the heat is that several crops just don’t like it hot. Both the cilantro and the spinach is just done already. Normally, I would expect both of them to last a couple more weeks. The lettuce, arugula, and the other mixed greens also do poorly in the heat.
The pigs also don’t like it hot. I’ve been going up to their pen in the middle of the day to give them extra water to roll in to cool off. Pigs cannot sweat so they just lie on the ground in the shade panting like a dog. They like to bury themselves in mud to stay cool so I’ll give them a little extra water during the day to take a nice mud bath.
I may be complaining about the heat a little, but there are many crops that like it hot. The tomatoes so far look great in the field. The peppers, eggplant, and summer squash also all love it hotter. This means we may see more of these crops this year compared to others. Fortunately it hasn’t been too humid so I haven’t had to worry about disease spreading around and killing these crops early.
The season is still young and anything could happen though. Maybe July and August will be really cool and it won’t ever get above 80. Or maybe we won’t get any more rain all season and everything will dry up. One can never know when farming, however, there is always next year.