Greetings from 12 Seasons Farm,
We hope you have had a wonderful weekend with family and friends.
Life has been very full here. I wish you all could see the beehive of
activity that exists here at the farm. The amount of hands and
coordinated activities it takes to cultivate a crop and bring it to
fruition is impressive. This week was one of those weeks where a lot of
timely, significant work was achieved before going into a long weekend.
We are grateful to work another season with a capable and energetic
Tomorrow we will be at the Captiva Farmers Market on Dec. 26. We
should have the first strawberries of the season.
Last Saturday was a fun and busy market. Thank you to all who support
us either through farm pick-ups, home deliveries, or the farmers
Here is our updated schedule this week:
TUESDAY CAPTIVA FARMERS MARKET : Tuesday, 9am-1pm at
South Seas Island Resort , Captiva. Buy directly from
the stand this week as preorders and Sanibel/Captiva home deliveries are
turned off this week due to Christmas Holiday. Market will be open both
Dec. 26 and Jan. 2. ** **
THURSDAY FARM PICK-UP & HOME DELIVERY FOR SW FL (NOT
INCLUDING SANIBEL AND CAPTIVA): Please place an order online
before TUESDAY, 8 pm. For farm pick-up on Thursday, please come to 14840
Old Olga Rd., Ft. Myers, FL 33905.
SATURDAY BONITA FARMERS MARKET **** ****: Saturday,
8am-noon at the Promenade Shops at Bonita Bay. Buy directly from the
stand or place a preorder online by Thursday, 8 pm.
Orders can be placed online at 12seasonsfarm.com **
This is what we are harvesting:
- Summercrisp Lettuce
- Baby Butterhead Lettuce
- Large Leaf Butterhead Lettuce
- Romaine Lettuce
- Curly Kale
- Flat Kale
- Mixed Kale (multiple varieties)
- Swiss Chard
- Sweet Italian Bull’s Horn Peppers
- Broccolini (limited)
- Cabbage (limited)
- Cherry tomatoes
- Campari tomatoes
- Heirloom/Specialty tomatoes
- Red Slicing tomatoes
- Round radish
- Daikon radish
- SW FL Saw Palmetto Honey
- SW FL Wildflower Honey
This evening Simeon and Benjamin enjoyed harvesting the first
strawberries that are going to market. We harvested in the rain and
don’t have a lot, but it is a start.
Kids enjoying break time last Friday.
Simeon helped a Painted Bunting bird get out from one of the screened
high tunnels last week. They are an extraordinarily beautiful bird and
from my experience, rare to see. Birds sometimes get stuck inside the
netted tunnels and Simeon is always happy to liberate them. He has an
especially keen interest and care of birds.
Last week we covered 2 greenhouse frames with 6 mil plastic. We
custom built our own vent system with a 3 ft. strip of netting at the
top of the greenhouse that is sandwiched in between two 20×110’ strips
of plastic. This vent at the top helps lower the temperature around 5
degrees and helps keep air moving.
After 2 days of constructing the vent system in this open area, we
are now ready to cover a greenhouse frame. We waited for a day with less
than 10 mph winds. Friday was great weather though it was a busy market
prep day. The photo above shows the team getting ready to lift and carry
the 43X110’ gh plastic (with the custom built screened vent). It was
carefully folded like an accordion.
The following photos shows some of the other steps involved in
covering one house.
Here is the team carrying the greenhouse plastic to the greenhouse
structure without bending too much the aluminum frame supporting the
Now, we reverse direction to fit in between other greenhouses.
It was a narrow fit!
Now the team on the right side has just successfully pulled over the
leading edge with the pink paracord you see on the right side.
Then we pull tight and secure the ends with “wiggle wire” in an
aluminum track that is attached to the top of the endwall arch. There is
a good view of the vent in this photo that runs down the middle. Once
the endwalls are secure, we secure the plastic along the sidewalls with
two different teams of workers inserting the wiggle wire into an
aluminum track to hold down and tension the plastic.
Now we add the whitefly netting that goes around the greenhouse. This
keeps whitefly and stinkbugs out. The whiteflies carry a deadly virus
and stink bugs just ruin the tomatoes.
We covered in the greenhouse in the morning and finished planting in
the afternoon along with all the harvesting and prepping for the farmers
market. It was quite the feat to accomplish in a day.
Farming takes an enormous amount of human energy. The 12 Seasons team
worked great this past week. To pull off covering 2 greenhouses,
screening them in, and planting them both is a lot of work in addition
to the typical duties of seeding, transplanting, crop maintenance,
harvesting, and packing. We are grateful for such noble and excellent
efforts from a motivated team!
I hope you get a little window into the beehive of activity on the
farm. Much goes into the soil and infrastructure in producing high
quality food along with a talented team. But what keeps it sustainable
also is your faithful support over all these years. We truly are
grateful to you.
Our family is touched by all the ways so many of you have blessed us
this season and last season with very affirming words and generous
support. We thank you and hope this coming season is one where you
experience God’s goodness and abundance intended for each of you!
Danny, Vicki, the kids, and the 12 Seasons Team