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Buurma Farms expects slight delay for spring vegetables

Early spring vegetable crops for Buurma Farms Inc., based in Willard, OH, will include parsley, green onions, collards, kales, dill, radishes and mustard, according to Bruce Buurma, a family owner of the farm.

Barring unforeseen continued problems with cold weather, Buurma expects to harvest radishes at the end of May and green onions around June 15-20.

Buurma in mid-April was “shipping from Georgia in full swing” with carrots. “Georgia has been extremely wet and cold. It was 16 degrees there in early December so the cold slowed things down. We started carrots Feb. 23 when Feb. 1 is normal,” Buurma said. “The acres we have on now are excellent quality. Lots of carrots are available.” Buurma is part of the Vidalia onion deal.

A cold weather planting delay won’t cause Ohio’s vegetable crop to be terribly late. Buurma said April 15, a day that his farm was covered in new snow, that planting later in April has the advantage of longer days to warm the fields. Ohio’s black soil absorbs the warmth and thus young transplants or seeds can “make up some ground.”

He expects to be seven to 10 days late “unless this weather remains.” Historically, “we have had some snow in late April and early May.”

The early spring in Ohio had been “extremely wet and it is difficult to find a place to start planting. The snow makes the soil greasy,” Buurma said. But as conditions dry, “when we hit the ground, we’ll hit it running. We’ll have no problems when it warms up.”