Little Peace Farm

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Little Peace Farm Blog

Welcome to the blog.
Posted 3/15/2010 10:48am by Michael Scheidel.
Hey folks.  Welp, we've all endured thigh-high snow and ankle deep rain, wind strong enough to worry about but the growing season is upon us.  As I type this we have several varieties of lettuces and Asian greens growing in flats to transplant out to the hoophouse.  We should have heads, salad mixes, greens and radish etc... ready by mid/late April.  I am seeding some peas this week so hopefully what the bunnies don't get we'll all be eating soon.  Potatoes and shallots have been ordered as have all of our seed for the season and beyond.

With the help of a brother-in-law, we've completed some farmhouse projects including new floors, new plumbing, and running electricity to the greenhouse.  We've also received truckloads of compost to amend our soil, especially for the ground we haven't plowed before.   

Our wandering hens are truly free ranging as they are in between being moved back to their pasture/eggmobile and the barn where they have been since the second snow storm.  They are slowing traffic in front of the house which is an unintended benefit as we live on somewhat of a straight-away and people drive way too fast. 

We are still exploring new opportunities for selling our produce and still have plenty of space in our CSA for new members (keep spreading the word!). 

Anyway, we hope all are well.  Back to the mud for me!  Peace.
Posted 2/22/2010 7:35pm by Michael Scheidel.

Hey all.  I am not sure everyone got to see the videos about recent farm projects and Hope, our new addition, so if not, here they are (just click on underlined above) or just check out the blog on our website. Use your volume as there is music too!  Thanks and enjoy!
Posted 2/22/2010 7:23pm by Michael Scheidel.

Hey all.  I am asking for some patience as I am tweaking my website a little bit.  I would like you to be informed when I post a blog entry or send our a message.  So if you get a few short or strange messages from Little Peace Farm, don't be alarmed! Stay tuned!



Posted 2/22/2010 7:21pm by Michael Scheidel.

Hey good folks.  Well, if you have known us for a while or have known us for a short while you are certainly aware that we have wanted to be farm owners for some time.  Before I even met Emily I knew this is what I wanted and she says the same.  Last Tuesday, we settled on the purchase of our farm.  It was a loooooong and sometimes frustrating process but exactly what we need to increase our business and live out our dream of farm and family.  I am pleased to change the item on our website that is titled The Plan because the plan has certainly come to fruition!


I wanted to thank all of those who have supported us in any way (prayer, advice, farm work, patronage…) and to let you know how truly grateful and humbled we are to be “your” farmers.  We are hopeful that interest in local, sustainable agriculture will be strong enough to support our family and feed yours. 

Now if you’ll excuse me, I am going to stare at the rafters in my barn.  Peace.

Michael and Emily and family.   


Posted 2/6/2010 1:34pm by Michael Scheidel.

Hey all.  I hope you enjoyed the last two blog entries (the videos).  I wanted to catch you up on what's going on at the farm.  Hope is an amazing addition to our lives and we have been blessed to bring such a wonder into the world.


I've ordered and recieved most of my seed for the 2010 season.  I am very excited to grow some new varieties like Forellenschluss Romaine lettuce, white satin carrots, and orange banana tomato.  I am continuing varieties that have performed well for me for several years as well.  Much of my seed is certified organic and I only buy seed from companies who have made the Safe Seed Pledge or who pledge not to sell any genetically modified seed. 


We need your help!  We still have plenty of shares available for our CSA so spread the word!  Small scale farms like ours thrive when supported by the community and reciprocate by providing food security!  You can refer friends and family to our website or have them call us for details.  Our goal is to serve a membership of 75 shares that is as local as possible.   


I recently purchased a 55" tiller to pull behind the tractor.  These tillers do an excellent job at preparing seed beds.  Using this implement should cut my time behind a machine significantly!  I also recently purchased a brand new irrigation system.  We will be irrigating from our pond using a gas powered pump and drip tape.  Now we just need the ice on the pond to thaw so I can "git at it"!


We are due to settle on the farm on February 16th.  Most of you who know us know it has been a long road.  But we are finally approaching another milestone.  We'll keep you posted. 


I recently purchased new plastic to cover our 60' long hoop house.  I plan on covering it within the next couple of weeks and seeding it soon thereafter.  This means that by late March we could have a boatload of salad greens!  I'll keep you posted on the progress.

Thank you all for your support of local agriculture and for your concern for the quality of food you consume and share.  Stay tuned for more news about Little Peace Farm.  Truly.


Posted 2/6/2010 1:31pm by Michael Scheidel.

Click here to see another video of some projects that have been keeping us busy!

Posted 2/6/2010 11:24am by Michael Scheidel.

Hey good folks!  Amidst all the snow we've gotten, we're finding ways to stay warm.  Click on her name to see a short montage with music of the newest addition, Hope, to Little Peace Farm.  Stay tuned!



Posted 12/3/2009 9:41am by Michael Scheidel.

Hey good folks.  Those who are in the area were sure to have enjoyed the 40 mph. gusts of wind and rain last night.  I spent a good deal of time in bed thinking about what was potentially being destroyed outside.  The egg-mobile was first in my head.  That's what I made to house our pastured egg layers.  Well, the hens were fine this morning, the egg-mobile upright and a beautiful sunrise it was!

We are in the process of acquiring a loan for purchase of the farm which has been a very difficult process in this tight lending market!  We're stressed but trustful that all will go well.  We'll keep you posted! 

We are currently accepting new members for the 2010 season.  Take a look at the details below and let us know if you are interested.  We are expanding for next season in volume and offerings.  Note that we are offering a limited number of egg shares so first come, first served!

Anyway, I hope all are well.  Looking forward to hearing from you soon and keep in touch!

We are currently requesting $50 deposits or full payments for half and full vegetable shares and additional shares for the 2010 season.  We are expanding our membership for next year so spread the word!  Here are the details:

Half Share=$295; 6 items per week; 18 weeks
Full Share=$520; 10 items per week; 18 weeks
*we will not be offering free flowers and herbs for the 2010 growing season (read below)!

We are again offering our members the opportunity to sponsor an anonymous family in the area.  Last season, 10% of our members were recipients of Good Steward Shares.  If you are interested in sponsoring a family, let us know.  You can either purchase a half share or donate any amount to our Good Steward Share Bank.  When we reach the cost of a half share, we will add another family.  If we fall short, Little Peace Farm will pick up the difference.  We will identify the families and share with them our farm information.
We learned that a valuable addition to our farm this year was the cut flowers and expansion of the herbs we grow.  We are offering for 2010 a flower and herb share.  This entitles a member one bunch of cut flowers and two bunches of herbs per week.  Our herbs include: basil(multiple varieties), parsley, fennel, chives, rosemary, chervil, savory, thyme, oregano, tarragon, cilantro,  mint, among others.  The cost is  $70 for the 18 week season in addition to the half or full vegetable share.

We are also offering a small number of egg shares this year.  Our hens are pastured and fed a layer ration and lay some beautiful eggs.  The cost for a dozen eggs per week is $35 for the 18 week season.   

We have decided to drop the Schuylkill Haven Farmer's Market for next year.  We were losing a significant amount of money and time there, although we enjoyed the market.  So we are offering two pick up sites for next year; the Pottsville Farmer's Market on Saturdays and at Little Peace Farm.  We have not decided on a day for farm pick up but it will likely be towards the beginning/middle of the week.   We'll keep you posted. 

Well for us, it was the chicken.  This summer we pastured 30 birds which are now in our freezer.  It went well although our simple system could use some changes.  We're considering growing pastured meat birds for customers but want to make sure we've got a grasp on the process so stay tuned.  

Oh, the final addition is our baby who is due in early January!  We'll keep you posted.

Posted 7/9/2009 11:51am by Michael Scheidel.

One more piece of great news, garlic is in!  We'll have it at markets starting today!


Posted 7/9/2009 11:26am by Michael Scheidel.

The warm and dry weather has kept me from my communication duties but I wanted to take the time before market today to update you on farm news.

Late Blight!

Late blight is the same fungus that caused the great Irish Potato Famine and it has reared it's ugly head here in PA due to the historic wet and cool weather this spring.  It has never been detected so early in this part of the country and the source is apparently from Wal-Mart/Home Depot stores selling infected plants that they got shipped in from the south!  The tomatoes home gardeners planted have spread the pathogen spores all over the northeast region. 

An alert from Penn State went out to growers over a week ago and since then me and lots of other growers have been losing sleep trying to decide how to proceed.  The problem mostly exists for those of us who stay away from chemical sprays.  The most effective sprays are used in conventional growing and there are very few OMRI (certified for organic production) listed products that are effective in stopping blight.  Late blight is a virtual death sentence for tomatoes and potatoes. 

After LOTS of reflection I have decided to use a combination of some OMRI listed copper products with a conventional fungicide.  Since I don't have a licence to spray anything very strong, I will spray whatever the average Joe can buy at Agway and will limit my applications as much as possible.  The loss of all of my tomatoes and potatoes would mean a virtual collapse of our business and we have worked too hard to stop here.  I thought you all should know.



We've joined a new market (the Plaza Grower's Market) at the base of the PP & L building in Allentown on Wednesdays from 11:30-1:30.  It is a very new market and has thus far yielded weak results but I think the potential is there and I really enjoy meeting new people in the same business.  The Allentown Brew Works is purchasing our produce weekly to put on their weekly sepcials menu.  There is live music every week and organic coffee, awesome hot food, AWESOME LITTLE PEACE VEGGIES, and honey.  Stop out if anyone is in town on Wednesdays.


Anyway, I hope all are well.  Pray that we survive blight and check us out at our markets and on the website.

PS...we promise some current photos soon!