Suddenly Mother Nature decided to relent and give all of us a much needed day of warmth and beautiful sunshine. The farm burst into spring yesterday. I think we can all use a few “feel good” moments these days. Enjoy these spring photos quickly since apparently we are moving into summer weather by this afternoon! (Note – Our crop of dandelions is not included in the photo album since Curtis ran them all over with the lawnmower.) For more photos showing signs of spring you can visit “Buds & Blossoms.”
Today as we move our clocks forward an hour, I think most of us can safely say we have had enough of winter and are ready to move towards spring. But before we dismiss winter completely, I have compiled a small slideshow of photos of winter 2020 here at the farm. All the predictions called for a long, cold, snowy and hard winter. Yet we went through one of the rainiest Januaries since data collection started, snow fall was sporadic and the temperatures fluctuated wildly. I hope you enjoy these photos whether you spent last winter out and about in the snow or opted to snuggle with blankets by a blazing fire. To have a closer look at some tiny wintery treasures you can visit “Weedy Wednesday.”
Sometimes it can be hard to drag ourselves out of bed in the morning and face a long, cold, dark winter day here at the farm. However, it can be a little easier with a beautiful view like this one taken at 5:00 am from our back porch earlier this week. And yes, this is what often greets us when we have an early start to our day! To see some other pictures of the beautiful sky seen around our farm you can visit “The Sky.”
Happy Family Day Canada! Here’s a look at some different families spotted recently here at the farm. We hope you enjoy this long weekend with those you love! To see some other pictures of animals you can visit “Pond Life Part II.”
Today is Canada’s Agricultural Day. The day we come together to celebrate the food we love as well as the people who grow it for us. Every day we are #AgProud here at our farm! We are #AgProud of the work we do, the food we grow and our customer service. I am pleased to release my new recipe for “Potato & Sweet Corn Chowder.” I invite you to try this recipe that’s made with simple and wholesome ingredients that are all grown and/or produced in Canada. You can click on the file above to print or download the recipe. If you’re looking for inspiration for some other new recipes you can visit “#AgProud” and “Tater Tales Feb 13th: #AgProud” to get you started. Bon Appétit!
Southern Ontario was hit with substantial snow over the weekend. How do we cope with clearing all the driveways, laneways, pathways and walkways here at the farm? We bring in the big equipment naturally! The photos above show John using the loader tractor and RJ using the backhoe to clear snow. All done under the watchful eye of Murray of course! To see some photos of unusual winter phenomenon I took here at the farm you can visit “Weird Winter Weather.”
Happy New Year everyone! All of us here at the farm wish you peace, health and happiness in 2020! RJ and myself started this new year with a rare free afternoon, so we decided to truck to our back 40 and explore the forest. First we collected kindling (me) and played with the chainsaw (RJ.) Secondly we checked in with our rivers to see how flooded they were and drove the trails checking for downed trees.
Lastly we checked in on our tree. This ancient, majestic tree is quite a landmark on our farm. It’s anyone’s guess as to how old she really is but since my arms don’t even go halfway around her, we know she is rather elderly. And since tree hugging is good for the soul, we both gave her a big hug and told her we would be back soon to check on her. To see some other interesting pictures of nature I took here at the farm you can visit “Buds & Blossoms” and “The Sky.”
Today I would like to address a little known topic about farming. We are often asked how we get the potatoes out of the ground in the winter. For centuries winter harvesting has been a tried and true method for keeping a fresh market supply of produce here in Canada. Working with snow and ice is never easy, and don’t even get me started on the wind chill in open fields! These pictures show our windrower and harvester set up to take on the winter weather conditions. Our tractors have full heating systems so the men who work in the fields are comfortable until they have to get out of the tractor to fix something.
Once you have thought a little bit about this information, I’m sure you’ll agree with me how ludicrous this all sounds. Potatoes are about 80% water so they would freeze solid if they were left in the ground over the winter. Implements would seize up in the cold and there is no way we could break the ground to dig up potatoes. All our potatoes are safely put into temperature and humidity controlled storages well before the ground freezes for the winter.
Thank you for reading along with me and Happy April Fool’s Day to you! To learn more about our actual harvesting process you can go to “Journey From The Underground Part II”
Here’s a little something fun for everyone to do this weekend. This is my on-line version of our wildly popular trivia game presented at the 2018 Farm To Fork Tour. Now’s your chance to challenge yourself by playing “Are You Smarter Than A Potato Farmer?” There are five true and false slides that will test your knowledge of some common animals found around our farm. (We felt it would be rather unfair to have a trivia challenge based on potatoes!) The first slide will have a true or false question which will be followed a second slide holding the answer. You can use the “pause” button found in the top left corner of the slide to think about your response before you move to the answer revealed. Good luck!
If you have been playing along this week on our Facebook page, you just need to watch the slideshow to see how you fared with your answers. Feel free to post the correct number of answers you got on our page. If you managed to get all five correct you have earned supreme bragging rights as you have proven to be smarter than a potato farmer. (Or at least as smart as we are!)
For some more fun photos of some of the wildlife spotted here at the farm you can visit “Cute & Fuzzy Animals” and “Predators.”
Today is Weedy Wednesday here at the farm. Even though weeds are something we normally work to eradicate, and even though most of us are quite tired of winter, at a certain point we need to take a few minutes to appreciate what we’re given. So I present my slideshow of glittering weeds covered in ice and snow sparkling in the brilliant sunlight. The photos were taken in the bitter cold early one frosty morning. Although I ended up with frozen fingers and burrs on my boot, I believe the end result was worth it. If you’re hungry for signs of spring, I invite you to take a look at “Buds & Blossoms” for a preview of spring flora and fauna.
Thompson Potato Farm
Farming is fascinating!