Fall Cleaning

With the sweet potatoes tucked away in the greenhouse, normally we head right for the regular potato field. But, since our harvest was somewhat dampened by the drought, we just don't have as many spuds to dig this year. Last year we had about 26,000 lbs in the ground at this point. This year, just over 5000 lbs. So, we did some digging, but in between beds, we had time on our hands. With it being a little early (and warm) for the storage root harvest to begin, we knew where to turn our attention: Clean up time!!

One of the consequences of a drought year is to put a lot of tasks "in the parking lot." If it's not mission-critical (it doesn't involve watering or harvesting crops), we will leave it for later. So, by mid-October, we had a quite a list - so we hit it with gusto!  First, we headed off with the brush hog to knock down the old corn stalks, the leftover weeds in the winter squash, and the summer growth from the fallow field over at Small One's. Then to the tomato field; With the plants dead from the frost it was time to remove the strings, then the posts, and then stack 'em up neat for next June. Then to the irrigation pipes; Find the pipes in the field, and lift each one, piece by piece, onto the wagons where they will sit until we need them again (hopefully not for a while!!). Then to the melon field and rip up the plastic mulch we used to warm our soil (allowing us to grow delicious cantaloupes).   Then brush hog the cows late summer pasture. And re-stack the hay bales and cover before the rain.

In the midst of that, we managed to pull in big loads of broccoli, cabbage, roots, and plenty of potatoes as well. By weeks' end, we had over 10 acres of land ready ready for the final round of cover cropping (something we like to have done by November 1). After months of barely keeping up, there we were, suddenly ahead of the game. You just never know how this is going to work out.

We hope you enjoy the harvest.

Your Farmer,
(for Karen, Abbe, Zoe, John, Rebecca, and Sunny)