Here at the OSA research farm in Chimacum, Washington, the days are getting longer, the soil is slowly drying out, greenhouse starts are being patient with the slow spring, and the maples are blossoming. In the greenhouse we have pollination tents with farmer-breeder Nash Huber’s red kale in full flower, and red drumhead crossed granite cabbages just starting to flower. We’re transplanting carrot roots to share the tents with the brassicas. Pepper starts are being distributed to our daughter farms this week for NOVIC trials, and NOVIC tomatoes are waiting for the weather to warm a bit more before being transplanted out to the field. Soon we will be seeding winter squashes and sweet corn in the greenhouse for transplanting out later in the month. Purple sprouting broccoli is sending up shoots and will go through another round of selection. In the field the red onions that stored through the winter are sending up shoots, and ‘Lyra’, one of the parent lines in our spinach breeding work is growing nicely.
Katie Miller is OSA's research field assistant in the Pacific Northwest.