Air Farmers

 

We made it through the weekend, despite the forecast for lots of rain, without getting too much. It was cloudy and cool. But it never really poured. Same with Monday; it was soggy, and we needed to postpone our annual Deerfield River crew-appreciation-day float, but not so much water from the sky. Just when we thought maybe we'd squeak past, the sky opened up two separate times, dropping about 3" of rain on an already-wet farm. Oh well. Since then, we've just been trying to farm some air.

See, that's the thing about water; it takes up all of the air spaces in the soil. And plants need to breath. And if they can't breath, they turn yellow and rot. We've seen a lot of that in the usual very wet spots, like in (what was the) late zucchini planting or in the kohlrabi planting in the middle field. So, we wait 'til it dries out, and then bring some tools into the field, to basically rip channels for air to get into the soil to feed our plants some much needed-air.

We also found a new challenge this week - a new pest (for us) on the peppers. Apparently there's a (yucky) fly. The fly drills into the peppers. Then lays eggs. Then the eggs hatch into maggots. Which are inside the pepper. And then, well, the rest is history. So on Tuesday in the rain, the crew pulled bucket after bucket of rotten peppers from the field.  The good news? There are no more of these nasty flies being born this season. The bad news? We have no idea how many peppers have flies in them. We will continue to monitor and hope for the best.

With all of that going on, we used our two sunny days on Wednesday and Thursday and filled them with melon harvesting and cultivating (air farming). We saw the lettuce and greens make a tentative, sweet comeback. The field tomatoes started ripening nearly a (literal) ton of beautiful fruit. The barn was filled with melons. Then on Friday afternoon it poured again.  Nothing else to do; We keep moving forwards.

We hope you enjoy the harvest,

Your Farmer,
Dan
(for Karen, Zoe, Abbe, Ellen, Alex, Ben, and Jake)