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Our first market day, continued heat, fence-raising, and more!

Market Debut - We're starting to feel like real-life farmers!  On Saturday we were able to make our first trip to market with our produce.  We bought a tent and tables, loaded up the truck, and drove to the Clayton Farm and Community Market.  We are glad to be a part of the Clayton market and enjoyed meeting many new customers and other vendors on Saturday.  It was nice to be welcomed in to such a friendly community group committed to offering Johnston County a market for locally grown and produced food and goods.  We will be at the Clayton market from 9:00-2:00 every Saturday through the end of October.  Come out and see us and all of the other vendors!

More Heat - Since our last post about the interminable heat wave of 2012, we've seen precious little relief.  We had part of a week of welcomed milder weather (upper-80s, cloudy, rain), but now are returning to the mid-and upper-90s for at least another week.  I received an email last week from Mike Lanier, an extension agent with the Orange County Cooperative Extension, that included a spreadsheet with some data he had collected on summer high temperatures by decade going back to the 1950s.  This spreadsheet shows a pretty dramatic scatter of weather patterns from the last half-century-plus.  I can pass along the data if you are interested, but I'll give a summary of the highlights for those not as enamored by data as I am.  The data is broken down by number of days with a high temperature in the ranges of 90-94 F, 95-99 F, 100-104 F, and 105-109 F.  The temperatures were measured at RDU airport and taken from the state climate office and Weather Underground's weather almanac data.  The data shows a clear trend upward from the 1960s to the present, with the heat of this decade on pace to dwarf any of the previous six.  Granted, we are only two and half years in to this decade, so a few cool summers could balance it out a bit.  However, the magnitude of the heating over the past few years, at least in terms of relatively recent history, has been quite impressive.  The key pieces of data from the table that illustrate this most clearly to me are the following:

  • Average number of days 90+ per year by decade:  1950s - 45.5, 1960s - 22.4, 1970s - 20.5, 1980s - 35.2, 1990s - 36.7, 2000s - 49.4, 2010-present - 82.6
  • Average number of days 95+ per year by decade:  1950s - 11.2, 1960s - 1.6, 1970s - 2.7, 1980s - 2.7, 1990s - 9.2, 2000s - 14, 2010-present - 41.1

Now, unless you're a climatologist, I'm not interested in starting a climate change discussion with this.  However, I feel safe in simply concluding what the raw data's really hot here, and it's pretty rapidly been getting significantly hotter.

Fence-Raising - We have made the first small steps of putting up our perimeter fence!  Besides the ages-old adage that good fences make good neighbors, the importance of us getting up a perimeter fence is that it is one of the major prerequisites for us to have before we start raising large animals.  We don't want anything getting in and messing with our animals, and we don't want any adventurous goats or furious boars befouling our neighbor's crops or yards.  We went through several different iterations of plans to get the fence up, but decided, like many things on the farm, that it would be best to do it ourselves.  Doing it ourselves accomplishes several things:  a.) it allows us to learn an important skill that we don't have (in a later post, I'll tout the genius of the design of an H-brace!), b.) it's cheaper, and 3.) hard work builds character.  I always like to remind myself of that last one whenever we're seconds away from losing all morale.

Anyways, with the help of our All-Star farmhands Dane and Adam and a pretty impressive 2-person auger, we have staked out the entire perimeter fence and have one 350' section of fence posts set.  There is much work yet to be done over the coming months and we are entertaining the notion of having an all-hands-on-deck fence-raising party sometime in the near future.  Any volunteers would, of course, be compensated in a banquet of free food and beverages after the day's work, along with a bonfire and a patch of grass on which to pitch a tent.  Let us know if you might be interested in something like that, and we'll keep everyone updated on how plans progresses.

Market Table Emails - If you're on our email list (sign up on the right if you're not!), you know that we will be sending out weekly emails with a list of our available produce for that week.  If you're interested in buying anything, just reply to the email or call/text us and we will make arrangements to get it to you.  This week's Market Table will be sent out just as soon as I get this post finished.  

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Reader Comments (1)

Thanks sweetie for calling it a "two-person" auger instead of "two-man". Now, I definitely have to prove my augering skills. I am ready and up for the challenge!!

July 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCaroline

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