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Yesterday was my first day back at the farm after a full week off. It took me several hours to set the Tin House back in order following the Thanksgiving farm stand, but the next winter share pickup is in three days. With 95 people on the schedule, there’s a lot to prepare for.

Believe it or not, we still have entire fields full of food. From far off, the broccoli, brussels sprouts, and romanesco might appear yellowed and dead, but a closer inspection reveals edible parts in their prime. This late-season abundance is no fluke, but the result of careful breeding by seed companies. Belstar broccoli may be a great all-around variety, but for an early-December harvest, Arcadia is my pick. When we order seeds for the upcoming season, the choices can be overwhelming, but choosing the right variety for the right conditions is essential to any crop plan. Of course, weather is always the wild card. Remember that cold snap two weeks ago, when the overnight low hit 23°? Even the hardiest of varieties can't withstand sustained lows in the twenties. Fortunately, the cold snap was just that—a snap—and now here we are, stepping into December, with loads of late-season greens on the harvest list.

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