Friday, May 26, 2023

Suisun Valley Garden Plot

So this is a possible garden plot that I could work on. I was told that a gentleman had some land that I could grow on. Unfortunately, the land owner did not have any water on the site that I could use. Without irrigation, it is very difficult to try to grow very much. He did say that there was some county water nearby and that I could contact someone to have it turned back on. However, I am not familiar with the process of doing this.














Perhaps I will try to do this another time. If I can get water to this location, then I can fight all the critters in the area in an attempt to grow a crop.

Friday, May 19, 2023

Creeping Cucumbers in their Native Habitat

While I was visiting with a sister-in-law in Louisiana, I noticed a spindly vine with leaves that looked very familiar to the cucamelon.





Sure enough, it was the Melethria pendula or Creeping Cucumber. I had never seen one of these cucumber varieties before, but it definitely did look a lot like a regular cucamelon. As I didn’t want to waste the seed from the fruit, I didn’t pick it immature – so I was not able to harvest seed from the fruit.

Friday, May 12, 2023

Working to Partner with a Farmer in Rio Linda for 2 Years

I am grateful for the opportunity I had to have my Striped Carosello Leccese cucumbers grown to seed by a Rio Linda farmer in 2021. We grew over 1 ton of cucumbers, with the majority of the fruit being harvested for seed. Because of this collaboration, I was able to grow and harvest a lot of fruit for seed processing and I was able to expand the seed companies that offer this incredible cucumber variety.


















In early 2022, through H&K Farms I was able to give a talk in Rio Linda at the Community Alliance with Family Farmers. I had a very good time and I was expecting that this would be a turning point in working with the staff at H&K Farms. Unfortunately, this would just mark the beginning of the end for my relationship with this wonderful farming family.









It is difficult to maintain any relationship for long without proper communication. I am grateful for the opportunity to work with a farmer in 2021, but I am also grateful for the ability to recognize when a relationship is no longer salvageable. I will continue to hope and pray that I will be able to find another farmer to help me maintain vigor in my most marketable carosello cucumber varieties.

Friday, May 5, 2023

Striped Carosello Leccese at H&K Farms

Back in 2020, I had a really good situation in that I was finally able to grow out one of my cucumber varieties with a local farmer. I had set aside several hundred dollars for him to grow out my cucumbers in quantity. It worked out relatively well. The farmer was with H&K Farms in Rio Linda and he grew out nearly 2000 pounds of Striped Carosello Leccese for seed. Out of that, I harvested around 20 pounds of high-quality seed.













Some of my favorite experiences were when I would go to check on the field or harvest fruit. I really enjoyed being part of the process and always looked forward to going back. Here is a quick video of me in the farmer’s field, trying out the Striped Carosello Leccese:




Over the course of the season, there were a lot of ups and downs. Unfortunately, a lack of communication at the end of the season made it very difficult to maintain the relationship. I continued to work to keep things going through the next season, but it was a real struggle.