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Friday, July 17, 2015

Water Usage - Drip Lines Installed

I purchased a drip system for my farm to save water.   This is an investment that will help reduce water use during the drought and also save me money.  I installed it over the last week and all of the rows now have drip lines instead of having to overhead water.
I am using Netafim drip tape and running two lines down each row.  My rows are 3 feet wide.   The water usage is very low.  Its .359 gallons of water per hour per row.   That's  less than half a gallon per row per hour or 9 gallons a hour for all 25 rows.   This will cut my water bill by 2/3rds.  

An image from the Netafim website showing how drip tape works.  I chose netafim because if offers a self cleaning variety.

The benefit of drip lines are the water is placed directly in the root zone.  

The leaves of the plants remain dry - reducing the spread of disease.

You won't water the rows which will cut down in weeds in the rows.

Here are some images of the drip lines installed.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Ground Squirrel Damage Control

I have a couple ground squirrel burrows in the corral where I grow my vegetables.   They are voracious pests who will destroy everything if left unchecked.    They are considered a pest by the state and are therefore no protected.  They are also known to carry fleas that vector the plague.  

I planted an entire row of cucumbers, squash, and cantaloupe.   100 plants per row, and they wiped them out by chewing off all the leaves.  

I have replanted the rows and plan on covering the rows with  some netting to give them a good start. Once the plants are larger and vining, eating a leaf here or there will not do that much damage, compared to when it's a seedling and there are only 2-3 leaves.

I am using some metal rods that bed into a half moon over the row then attaching the netting.

Here is a picture of the netting.

Here is are the rows with pictures showing the process.  I will let you know if it works.    You can see the holes where there used to be plants and also some plants left, minus the leaves.

Special Visitor to the Farm - Health's Kitchen Owner

We had Robin who owns Health's Kitchen, a new restaurant that recently opened in Riverside.   She stopped by to help do some planting, then forage for some veggies for her restaurant.   Here is a picture of the interior of her restaurant from their website.
Here is a map along with the address

There website is

Here are some pictures of Robin - after planting a row of onion seedlings