Wow! A few warmer-than-usual days in March teased us farmers, got us all antsy to be outside, then we got snow storms back-to-back, a bonafide blizzard that held everyone in a bit longer.
Now it seems like spring has exploded on us and we’ve been just keeping up.
Spring on the farm entails lots of visioning. We hydrate tiny seeds and watch them grow a bit each day, looking toward the fields that will be full, lush, and abundant in the future. We prepare the fields and work to be ahead of the “weeds” that come up quicker than a blink of the eye. (But, yum! We’ve already foraged Dandelion Greens, Lamb’s Quarter, and Sorrel for some meals!)
There are lots of peeks in the greenhouse throughout the day, making sure everyone is watered, settled, and thriving.
Just yesterday we began hardening off Westlander and Lacinato (Dino) kale, Champion collards, and seven varieties of onions that will be planted in the fields next week. “Hardening off” is moving the plants outside when conditions aren’t so intense, preparing the plants with a little stress to get strong for a whole season of growing through varied conditions.
If you know other farms, you will notice some differences with our field preparation. After the snow melted, fields were soaked for a good week or two, so it wasn’t good for tractors. Because our no-till method doesn’t necessitate tractor use, we were able to keep going on the crop plan even through the mud. I put on my muck boots and found the wheelbarrow–yep, the first beds of the season were covered with all human power (thanks to some trusty tools)!
Who’s looking forward to Evergreen Hardy scallions, Cabarnet onions, Watermelon radishes, Golden beets, Alto leeks…??
We have some new family members to introduce!
We’re envisioning these babes all grown up, too, helping clear out brush in the back of our yard, keeping bug populations more balanced (check for ticks, y’all, they’re already coming in droves), and providing some household eggs.
Speaking of, don’t forget to add a weekly or bi-weekly egg addition to your share! You can check out Old Ford Farm and their pastured methods here.
This is a beautiful season full of hintings of new growth. We work with greenhouses and computers to get a jump on the season, but the land is still in charge, reminding us to let go of the tick-tock seconds of human time to lean into the heart-beat, budding and flowering, windy breeze, sun pattern rhythms of the ecosystems we’re part of.
This is also a difficult season of awakening muscles, learning new lessons–some I thought I knew, some I didn’t know I would be learning, and breaking in new work boots in that not-comfortable-now but gonna-be-good way.
We’re reacquainting with fields, methods, and tools while we’re dreaming, scheming, and testing out.
I am so grateful for the network of farmers where we support one another, listen to ideas, and give each other feedback. As often as I can, I say “forget an internet search, I’m calling one of these folks up and we’re talking it out while we’re both in the field!”
We’re sore more often these days and skin is startled by all of a sudden being outside. I sometimes feel like one of the leggy kale plants that got a little too mature before being moved into a bigger container–knowing I’m going to make it just fine, that I am strong, but at the moment there’s awkward, growing pain, adjustment.
It’s intimidating, exciting, and wonderful to be growing food for you all. We are so looking forward to meeting in person, to sharing our love for food and the land with you, and continuing to create this community together.
If you haven’t signed up yet, get a move on so we know to save your spot! There are still about 20 spots available if you have a friend interested. Thank you for the recommendations some of you have already given–it’s an honor!
Put Tuesday June 6/Wednesday June 7 on your calendars for first pick-up!
Follow us on Instagram and Facebook if you want more regular photo updates, @secondwindcsa.
Here’s to all of it–the good, hard, confusing, exhilarating, and challenging! Here’s to giving it all we’ve got and doing it together.
For the love of food,