Notes from the Field: CSA Week 7

Photograph by Eytan Alder.
Photograph by Eytan Alder.

And in the blink of an eye, July is both here, and almost gone. Summer on the farm reminds me sometimes of hosting a busy dinner party – very fun, but requiring your constant attention and preparation. Do we have enough of this seed and that green? How will our brassicas do with the next flea beetle cycle? Guests may leave abruptly, arrive unexpectedly early, make a mess, and you handle it all with as much grace as you can muster. You attend to everyone’s needs as best you can, and sometimes step out for a minute to give yourself a pep talk because despite your best efforts, your beautiful dish in the stove has caught fire, or the dog has eaten all of your appetizers, and it’s all you can do to keep from having a shouting fit. But, you’re still the host, and the party goes on, and at the end of the day, you can sit down and enjoy the rewards you have reaped; tired, but happy.

Our crew stays cheerful and hardworking, through the ups and downs of this ‘party,’ through heat and pounding rain. Our planting project was interrupted by the flash flooding of this past week, with several rounds of five-minute downpours turning our field into a lake, and our bed aisles into rivers. We planted on, and the sudden rain providing for hilarity as we shot limericks and haikus back and forth about the weather, and slipped, often getting impossibly stuck in the mud. It is times like these that make me thankful for our crew, their tenacity and spirit that keep me laughing through the extremes that we come upon in our job – if you see one of our farm crew this week, thank them! Our beautiful produce is a testament to their hard work, and passion for what we do.

Cooler nights these past few weeks have meant that our first planting is taking a breather after a few bountiful weeks of slicing cucumbers and summer squash that you’ve seen in your share. True to the nature of summer though, as this first planting slows temporarily, we have other plants gearing up for their time in the spotlight. As I walk through our Concord Road field, I have been simultaneously excited, and bracing myself for the harvest that our amazing fruit set portends. Solanaceous plants like peppers and tomatoes are a reward you have to work for, and I find that it’s a fair tradeoff for the big delicious heirlooms, and peppers, sweet, green, and hot. Our next succession of cukes, zukes, and summer squash is gearing up for their turn on the CSA table, and after a big harvest, we’re happy to say we’ve saved a lot of carrots from the deer that had just begun to discover how tasty Land’s Sake carrots really are. I’m also happy to say that the flower garden is open for business to both CSA and Pick-Your-Own! It is one of my peaceful places on the farm, where I’m happy to spend my last minutes before I go home checking on the flowers, deadheading, weeding, or just strolling, and I hope you enjoy it too!