Welcome to Mistik Acres.

We hope you are able to form a connection with us, and the products we grow and produce on the land we live and work with.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Fantastic Fall

Wow, what a fantastic fall we are experiencing.  Sunny, warm daytime temperatures along with nights that dip just below zero, but not too far below.  Can't really ask for anything more than that at this time of year.  The gardens have been mulched, tilled and are ready for Spring.  Planted a few types of seeds that will survive the winter temperatures, to get a early start on some vegetables, such as radish, spinach and lettuce.  Planted Bell's of Ireland and Buplerum seeds as well, for the earlier harvest.
Dug and prepared the last batch of horseradish root for the year.  Stop in at the Saskatoon Farmer's Market and pick up a jar or two as it won't last long.  We are heading out to the bush to harvest Red Willow and Dogwood stems for Fall and Christmas decorating.  They will be available by the stem or bunch.  They look great in your outdoor fall displays.
Pat has been busy making barnboard bird feeders and bird houses this past week.  They will be available at the market Saturday.
I have now received all of the plant catalogues from the various suppliers and have been deciding what to order for our plant stock sales for 2012.  There are lots of unique and interesting options, so we have been taking a closer look at individual plants and researching hardiness for our zone.  We are going to have available the Red Rhubarb for 2012, as we had many requests for it after we were sold out of our 2011 stock.  I will profile the various plants we will have for 2012 sales in future postings.
Happy Halloween!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Information on growing tomatoes.

I came across really good information this past week regarding growing tomatoes, or specifically, solutions to diseases of tomatoes.  The first link is focusing on blossom end rot and how the experts solve this issue. http://www.douggreensgarden.com/black-rotting-bottoms-on-tomatoes.html
The second link below is a downloadable chart on symptoms of tomato plant issues and the possible causes.
It is a very good reference for next year's growing season.

We have enjoyed a relaxing past week.  We visited and enjoyed fantastic food all Thanksgiving weekend.  We continued to tidy up gardens, made tomato sauce, salsa and roasted tomatoes.  Made a batch of horseradish, to sell at this Saturday's market.  We do not expect it to last too long, so best to come down early or e-mail us and we will set some aside for you.  We took a drive up to LaRonge for a change of scenery and to pick up a supply of fish, netted in the cold waters of  Northern Saskatchewan.  The colours of fall were on display, and we stopped in at the Robertson's Trading Post in LaRonge, to see all the wonderful items made by the local people, which include, moose hide moccasins, mukluks, jackets and beautiful paintings of local artists.  It is a store that has everything including grocery items, clothing, beaver and otter pelts.  We purchased a bag of locally grown wild rice.  If you are ever in the area, make sure you stop in and take a look around.

Below is a few pictures of our horseradish making process.

First the root is peeled, washed and cut into about 2" chunks and then fed into the food processor below.  We are then left with a fine grating of the root, which is mixed with vinegar, to stabilize the volatile compounds, which provides the heat, and a little bit of salt.  Once the vinegar and salt is added it is packed into sterile jars.  It will keep for up to two months in the fridge and up to a year in the freezer.

The grating of the root requires a heavy duty processor, as the root is very tough and fibrous.  As you can see the process needs to be done in a space that has ventilation, due to the fumes given off by the grated root.  The best place to do this is outside.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Busy week.

This past week we accomplished a lot of fall/spring chores.  We planted just over 1100 garlic cloves a few days ago, almost tripling what we planted last year.  The reason we increased the quantity is, that we always sell out of garlic within a month of harvest, so hopefully next fall we can stretch the garlic supply over a couple of months.  We came across some well aged sheep manure, so we hauled eight truckloads and spread it throughout the gardens, before the rain came on Friday.  This past week we hauled three truckloads of alfalfa bales.  We incorporated some of it into the soil and we will use the rest for mulch next growing season.  We moved a lot of perennials this past week, and shredded the garden plant material and tilled all the gardens.  It was a very productive week, the weather was wonderful and we received an inch of rain on Friday to settle everything into the soil.
We are planning on attending the Saskatoon Farmer's Market till mid December this year.  We continue to have a lot of ripe tomatoes, yellow onions, leeks, carrots, dried herbs, frozen raspberries, succulents and dried wheat and flower arrangements.
Some of our customers have been stopping by the last couple of weeks at the market to tell us their dahlias, they purchased from us in the Spring, are still blooming.  So envious, sure wish all of ours hadn't froze.

Enjoy Thanksgiving!