That term usually applies to Summer right? Well not this year! This week on the farm it’s been SUPER HOT! I know, I know it’s not just on the farm, but at your house too. It’s always something, isn’t it? Last year it was rain and this year it’s a heatwave. So what do we do? Well let’s talk about it as I share with you some tips that work for us.
Just about every morning I have a conversation with Shena of Bain Home Gardens. This is usually right after the crack of dawn as we are both working diligently to beat the heat. Yes! I said the crack of dawn……we have found that this is the coolest part of the day. Take for example Sunday, I went out around 6 pm to finish up farm chores. Right before this I checked the weather and wouldn’t you know it was still in the high 90’s? 97 to be exact!!! So I sprayed myself to fight the mosquitoes and headed out. I had started that morning, but didn’t get it all done so I had to wait until the second coolest part of the day to finish out the work.
Side note: Sometimes the weather can be deceiving. As the sun goes down it may seem like it’s not that hot, but this is where you can get yourself into trouble if you’re not careful. Heat exhaustion is real and it can creep up on you without warning. So be observant and take precautions.
Back to Sunday……About 45 mins after I went out I was pouring sweat. Even still the meatbirds needed to be moved and watered. (Hens have an automatic waterer) Plus my evening garden inspection was absolutely necessary since we’re heavy into bug season.
A few things that we do to beat the heat is number one you guessed it, go out early. The plants have previously had a long day of full sun and an equally long night battling with bugs, so getting a nice cool drink in the morning helps them to soak up water in the soil throughout the day. I like to get down right at the soil level and make sure everything gets a good soaking at the roots. Thankfully we have some drip irrigation, but it’s not everywhere.
The importance of staying hydrated cannot be stressed enough! Drink water before you go out and then take water with you to ensure you have enough to keep you well while outdoors. This is our second tip.
Our third one is take sun breaks. Have your chair ready in the shade and sit for at least 5 mins to give your body a break. While you’re there enjoy it! Don’t stress about what has to be done next. Sit, sip, and relax. Be thankful for what you’ve completed thus far.
Just because it’s hot doesn’t mean the work stops. So as farmers and gardeners it’s up to us to find what works. Of course the list could continue, but these are just a few. If you have a suggestion or would like to share something that works for you, let us know. Until then, we hope these tips work for you.