Can it be mid-June already? It has been a fairly cool and wet spring, and so the summer is sneaking up on us. It is coming, however: the first CSA pick ups have happened; the solstice is almost here; the hot crops – tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, melons – are in the ground; strawberries are rolling in; and yes, flushes of weeds are keeping us busy. The alternating rain and sun we’ve experienced over the past few weeks has enabled us to get into our fields to plant crops at key times and then watch them get watered and grow. This is also due to our sandy soil, which is a mixed blessing. The water drains quickly from our fields (other farms have not been so lucky and have had to delay planting). On the other hand, if we do get a drought, we must use irrigation to water crops, because our fields dry out quickly.
I encourage you to continue to come for your work hours – even as the summer gets busy with school getting out, vacations to take, and novels to read under a shady tree! Spreading out your hours over the entire summer enables us to take care of the small things as well as all of the priorities in the field, and this keeps the farm looking good. Thanks to the many people who have put in work hours already this season, we got the farm up and running fairly smoothly this year and have been staying on top of things. We’ve had some big groups come out, which is not only fun, but enables us to get a lot done, quickly and efficiently.
We also invite you to stay for lunch on the days that you work. Alison, Brendan, Paulette, and I want to get to know you and would love it if you brought a sandwich and sat with us at the picnic table. We often bring something to share – a block of cheese, a pitcher of lemonade, a chocolate bar, or just some good ole’ conversation.
We have had many wildlife sightings this season already. There have been a lot of wildlife “firsts” for me this year, both on the farm and off. At the farm: Large deer antler found on perimeter of our field in the early spring; Rabbits; Pileated woodpecker; black swallowtail caterpillars on parsley plants; toad in greenhouse; turtle bones found in field; Resident red tailed hawk and accompanying small, chasing birds; Hummingbird; Ladybugs; Cedar waxwings (these gregarious creatures love eating strawberries); Coyote prints; Carolina wren; Great blue herons flying overhead; Catbird tending nest near wash station; Pair of killdeer nesting in the flower garden (these birds sit on their nest, which is on the ground, carefully tending their clutch. They take turns, and if you watch closely, you can catch the “changing of the guard.” If we get too close, however, they let us know by feigning a broken wing, in order to lure us away!). What have you seen…?
See you at the farm,