New season corn plus soil health at Tweed River Pecans and more!

Is there ever a sound more heartening than the musical notes of rain pinging on the roof or nearby tank when the ground is so desperately dry? I was fortunate that I received some beautiful rain but didn’t get hit with any hail over the weekend and I hope you were too.

Farmers watch the weather very closely so that they can plan accordingly and sometimes this ends in disaster as was the blueberry story several years ago when November hail wiped out $1million of protective netting.

Tweed River Pecans were over the moon about the rain coming as Kaye and David McNaught had planned to “feed” their pecan orchard and the rain helps to settle it all into the soil.

More about how Tweed River Pecans nurture their orchard in our What’s News section.

Firstly though congratulations Sarah and Angus from Monty’s Strawberries on your new addition. Sarah delivered a beautiful baby son – Ross – brother to Lilly last week. We wish you all the very best at this very busy time in your life. And yes their strawberries are also flourishing and plenty for everyone now so check them out this week. 

I trust that you enjoy hearing about the various activities that our local farmers plan in different seasons to ensure the best productivity possible. So this week here is a snapshot of what Tweed River Pecans has been doing:

David decided that it was time to feed the pecan orchard and nurture the soil and soil microbes that nourish the trees ensuring that they produce reliably delicious AND nutritious nuts. Soil health has been a long standing interest to both David and Kaye. 

David explains that “we are spreading a mixture of soft rock phosphate, gypsum, lime and compost. It’s all organic. This will be followed by a spray of worm juice, molasses, kelp and liquid sea minerals.”

I am well informed that 26 tonnes was spread so that is no mean feat!! Thank goodness for great farm machinery.

Two days after spreading, the much anticipated rain came with the promise of more next week so the timing was perfect. The rain helps to settle the new applications into the soil as well as providing much needed moisture. Not too much though and not too little. 

The photos above show the newly forming buds, some of the inputs being delivered and David spreading it.

Kiddies Patch is back 👏with two Story Time sessions and one activity each morning.  These are always COVID appropriate.

Joanna Wharton has kindly volunteered her time to read stories to the littlies and from what I could see last week they were enthralled. I guess this is Joanna’s teaching background. She certainly knows how to engage their interest. The two time slots are: 9.30am and 10.30am.

Angie Shears-Myburgh  has kindly volunteered to take on the activity at the Kiddies Patch tables and with her warm personality she is loved already.

A big THANK YOU to both Joanna and Angie and to Paula LaBelle for The Family Centre for coordinating these activities. We are so lucky …. So very very lucky ……

Griffith Uni /MFM Research Project
The research being conducted by three Griffith Uni students and mentioned in our newsletter over the past two weeks now includes an online questionnaire in case you haven’t had a face-to-face interview yet. If you missed last week’s newsletter, the aim of the research is to determine the beliefs, attitudes and perceptions of consumers attending the Murwillumbah Farmers’ Market.

Courtney, Amy, and Tatjana have conducted face-to-face interviews but for many 5 minutes online is so much more convenient so here is the link: below  

What’s GREAT at the Market this Week? 

Delicious new season corn has arrived at Jumping Red Ant and next week Everest Farm so pick some up this week and enjoy corn on the barbie or raw shaved off the cob for a delicious sweet addition to your salads.

To barbecue simply keep it in its husk leaving the silk on so that it adds extra sweetness. The husk prevents it from drying out although some suggest that it is good to soak the corn in its husk, first. Carefully put a little oil or butter under the husk by gently peeling it back then rolling it back up. Cook for 5 minutes on each side and then cook for just little longer on a lower heat – maybe about 15-20 minutes in total. Very fresh juicy new season sweet corn MAY need less time.

Interesting facts: Corn is one of The Three Sisters – corn, beans and squash. According to Iroquois legend these three plants when planted together thrive in the same way three sisters can be found to be inseparable. The Native Americans chose to plant corn, beans and squash in the same mounds, which created a sustainable system that provided for soil health and fertility. The corn allows the bean to climb up and produce more, the squash forms a protective blanket over the very thirsty corn roots as well as the roots of the week