There’s nothing quite like seeing 100 acres of barley waving in the wind to give you that proverbial lump in the throat. It reminds us why we became farmers.
Every July we make plans for the harvest season at Rogue Farms.
The Risk™ malting barley harvest in Tygh Valley kicks things off mid-month, followed by our seven varieties of hops at our farm in Independence in August. But you know what they say about making plans.
This year, Mother Nature and the 7,140,289 Rogue Farms honeybees decided it was time to shake things up.
“To everything there is a season”, the ancient sage teaches us, and at Rogue Farms we’re coming to the end of one season and starting another.
We just finished planting our jalapeño peppers. This is one of the last crops we’ll put in the ground this year. The planting season is winding down and the harvest season will be here sooner than you think.
Just a couple of years ago we were growing our peppers in small, garden boxes. It was an experimental patch to see how they would do in the soil and climate of the Wigrich Appellation, and how they would taste in our Chipotle Ale and Chipotle Spirit. They turned out so well that we planted a quarter acre last year, and a full acre this year.
The calendar says summer is just getting started. Not the time of year you normally think about bringing in a crop.
But Mother Nature doesn’t always stick to a schedule. Thanks to a spring growing season that was unusually warm and sunny the Rogue Farms cherries are ripe now. So what if they’re a couple of weeks early? It’s time to get the ladders and baskets out of the barn and head into the orchard to start picking.
This is the greatest time of year to be a Rogue Farms honeybee.
We’re in the middle of the summer nectar flow, when gazillions of wildflowers, blackberry flowers and clover fill the fields surrounding our farm.
It’s the honeybee’s version of an all you can eat for free buffet. But for our bees, that’s not good enough.
We’re about a week away from the summer solstice, aka the longest day of the year.
On June 20th, the sun will rise over Rogue Farms at 5:25am and won’t drop below the horizon until 9:02pm. 15 hours, 36 minutes and 31 seconds of daylight.
This is when is our hop bines go into overdrive. Long periods of daylight trigger the natural hormones within hops that cause them to grow several inches in a day, several feet in a week. You can literally watch the hops grow.
So how’s this year’s crop coming along?
We took advantage of the gorgeous weather this weekend to plant this year's crop of Dream pumpkins.
It's amazing to think of how these tiny seeds revolutionized the way we do things at Rogue Farms. We'd been growing our own seven varieties of hops and two varieties of malting barley. But when dropped our first seeds of pumpkins in the soil a few years ago, the GYO revolution took a big leap forward.