Photos by Susan Harlow
CLEAN CUTTING: With a gas-powered walk-behind harvester, Christa Alexander of Jericho Settlers Farm can cleanly cut 200 to 300 pounds of greens in 10 minutes.
TIMING IS CRUCIAL: Although greens can easily survive below-freezing temperatures, they must be harvested above freezing to give plant cells time to rehydrate.
SPINNING THE GREENS: Taylor Mendell used a conversion kit to turn a commercial washing machine into a spinner that dries greens quickly. She and her husband, Jake, did this as part of a University of Vermont project testing the efficacy of a commercial washing machine converted into a greens spinner, at a cost of about $1,200.
GROWING IN THE COLD: Footprint Farm grows a variety of winter greens, including a mesclun mix, several kinds of kale and spinach, Asian greens, and mini-head lettuce.
YEAR-ROUND BALANCE: Using hoophouses to grow winter greens helps Taylor and Jake Mendell better manage cash flow through the entire year.
WINTER SPINACH: Christa Alexander uses a mechanical hand harvester to cut spinach. It works well in hard-to-maneuver places like bed ends.