Hello and Goodbye

We’re closing in a full week of no serious precipitation, and it feels as though our world is finally drying out. Spring showers are nothing new, but coming on the heels of last summer’s torrential rain, and it’s a recipe for—you guessed it—mud. One of the first lessons Steve and I drilled into our new apprentices Lisa Chalif and Michael Mottola was the importance of not getting the farm trucks stuck in the muck. Fortunately, they’re quick learners, and the mud finally seems to be abating.

The sun was shining on last Saturday’s farm tour. We had several new faces in the group, but most attendees were long-term CSA members curious to see how the farm has evolved. For almost two hours, Steve and I waxed poetic about reduced tillage, cover crop, and cultivation techniques. The soil was dry enough to accommodate a basketweeder demo, and a few kids got sweaty chasing Canadian geese from the kale. Afterwards, when I asked Lisa for feedback, she seemed most impressed by the variability of our fields. For a relatively small farm, our covers a wide range of soil types and terrain, making for a steep learning curve. Knowing that Pond Field has poor drainage, that Lower Crooked is slow to warm, and that Lower Williams will occasionally host a raging river—these observations take years to make and absorb.

The first CSA pickup is now one week away, and the predictable mini-dramas are playing out in the fields. Wi