On Thursday–one week ago–as I prepared to write our weekly edition of this farming life, Rebecca was in the final stages of labor. Needless to say, that email did not happen. Just after ten in the evening, she gave birth to our precious darling of a daughter. She is strong and healthy and is officially one week old! Rebecca and I are proud new parents (sleep deprived, but immensely proud). We look forward to introducing Georgia Rhodes Harris to you in the months to come at the farmer’s markets. We invite you to welcome her into this community – people of the food – so that she may grow up being loved and cared for in the way that you do so boldly for us.
As if basking in the love and giddiness of a new baby was not enough, the weather gods bestowed on us a fantastic dry week. This is a big deal. It finally seems like winter has let go. It meant that we could disk and till our fields, shape beds, dust off our planting tools, and plant ’till the cows came home. Ok, not really–but it felt like that. And those onions, which would have been planted so many weeks ago, finally found their place in the soil! So too, did arugula, broccoli, beets, carrots, collards, cauliflower, a few kale varieties, salad greens and spinach, peas, radishes, and turnips. If the weather holds (food growers always begin a sentence like this) we should plant the first succession of tomatoes in the coming week!
Farmer’s market season is around the corner for us. While both the Byrd House farmer’s market and the farmer’s market @ St. Stephen’s are year-round markets, we only have booths there from spring to fall. As you may know, this has been a long winter and a wet spring so far, which has slowed down our whole crop planting schedule. It means that we are a few weeks behind schedule, and are working hard to catch up. We can promise you that once the goods come in, you’re gonna love ‘em. Our crew has been working very hard to make it all happen, and we are extremely grateful for their dirty hands and clean hearts (as our friends at Working Hands Farm would say)!
For our CSA members: expect to receive a more detailed email from us early next week with information about the upcoming season. This will include details about your CSA member card, what to expect at the first market, member events for this year, and much more. We are so excited about growing fantastic food for you this season!
The Midwestern poet, Tom Hennen, who was once introduced as the “genius of the common touch”, has spent most of his working life outdoors. Perhaps it is this that makes his a poetry of the heartland, in the rich tradition of Thoreau and Emerson and Bly. Tom Hennen describes himself in one of his poems as The only talent I have/Is to be able to smell each new season/Before it comes/In the hair of women. His heart-buckling lines, delivered with an acute awareness of the frogs and the grass are to die for. It is his Spring Follow Winter Once More that made my heart buckle this week. May yours too.
Lying here in the tall grass
Where it’s so soft
Is this what it is to go home?
Into the earth
Of worms and black smells
With a larch tree gathering sunlight
In the spring afternoon
And the gates of Paradise open just enough
To let out
A flock of geese.
Be well, eat healthy, and be kind to yourself and others.