Rainy days at Biophilia Organic Farm: North Fork Sunday Scene

Biophilia Farm

Farmers Phil and Abra weeding the garlic field with resident groundhog guard dog Pudgy. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

What’s a farmer to do when it has been raining for more than 10 days?

For farmer Phil Barbato of Biophilia Organic Farm on Manor Lane in Jamesport, it’s time to get out and weed. There was a light drizzle Thursday afternoon so he and fellow farmer Abra Morawiec were out there in the 1/4 acre garlic patch weeding around the 7,000 hard and soft neck plants. They planted the nine varieties in that field last fall and will harvest them this summer.

“Weeding is what you can do when it is wet,” he said. “The weeds come out easier. It feels like we’ve had 10 days of rain and the next eight have a forecast of rain for six of them. You can’t get in the field with a tractor when it is this wet.”

They also spend a lot of time in his greenhouse repotting tomato seedlings.

The 65 tomato varieties are started from seed and transferred from flats to four inch pots. This method helps develop a good root system before they are planted in the field in the next two weeks. The 975 plants will take up about a 1/3 acre, with each variety occupying a 30-foot-long row.

The first fruit harvested will be around the last week of June and the beginning of July. Phil said he plans for early, middle and late harvesting varieties to meet the demand of his CSA customers, of which he hopes to have about 50 signed up. His annual tomato festival takes place on August 20 this year.

Now he is just looking for a break in the weather and some sun.

“Plants love sun and so do people,” he said. “I struggle with it when it is gray like this. I try to do as much as I can indoors in the greenhouse.”

This year is his 17th season on the 14-acre farm. For more info go to localharvest.org/biophilia-organic-farm-M10707.

See more photos below.

Farmer Abra Morawiec holds a cherokee purple tomato seedling that was transferred into a 4-inch pot a couple weeks ago to develop its root system.

Farmer Abra Morawiec holds a cherokee purple tomato seedling that was transferred into a 4-inch pot a couple weeks ago to develop its root system.

Farmer Abra Morawiec watering the newly transplanted tomato seedlings Friday morning.

Farmer Abra Morawiec watering the newly transplanted tomato seedlings Friday morning.

Tiger enjoys the warmth of the greenhouse on chilly rainy days.

Tiger enjoys the warmth of the greenhouse on chilly rainy days.

Farmer Phil Barbato weeding the garlic patch in a light drizzle Thursday afternoon.

Farmer Phil Barbato weeding the garlic patch in a light drizzle Thursday afternoon.

Your North Fork Sunday Scene features weekly snap shots of life on Long Island’s top fork

Previous North Fork Sunday Scenes:

Blooming in Baiting Hollow

Riding in Laurel

Spring plowing at Sang Lee Farms

Baby chicks in Riverhead

Early spring blooms

Peacocks in Southold

Roaming the pasture at McCall Vineyards and Ranch

A Southold ‘Renaissance’ man

Winter at the Beach

Sunset over the Sound

An early harbinger of spring

A field of geese? Look again

A North Fork snow day

A New Suffolk Ave. sunset drive

Icicles form at Iron Pier Beach

Birds of many feathers in Riverhead

Blanket-wrapped horses

Katahdin sheep in Jamesport

Late fall harvest at Andrews Family Farm

Feisty Acres quail farm

Fall art in the fields

North Fork fall foliage

Healing with Horses

Harvest is coming

CSA pickup day at Biophilia

A postcard from Love Lane

Bring on summer

A stroll down Oregon Road

‘Zenful’ flowers in Baiting Hollow

Hello from this North Fork mama and her babies

North Fork asparagus is here