Last week, we watched the forecast of frost for the weekend carefully as it rose and fell a degree or two. On Friday, we set out the row cover we'd need to protect the peppers and the beans and we made sure the harvested squash and sweet potatoes were tucked into the greenhouse. Then the cold night moved from Saturday to Sunday night, so we waited. Sunday evening, Dan and Ellen were at the ready and covered up the plants so they'd make it through. "Goodbye tomatoes, it's been a good long run with you this year," we thought.
On Monday morning, we proceeded through the harvest as though it had frosted, though it wasn't visibly white out - we dug some roots first andmoved the greens harvest later in the morning so they'd have time to thaw. But by mid-morning we could tell it hadn't quite frosted after all. All those tomatoes we'd mentally prepared to lose overnight? There they were - still ripe on the vine. So we got the buckets and went picking again.
It had a flavor of saying a heartfelt farewell to someone outside a building, only to find you're walking the same direction. But less "walkward," because they are tomatoes. Often, the tomatoes die in a frost with green ones still on the vines. This year, there are no more green tomatoes left; they've fully fruited. These are tomatoes that have lived a good long life. As the week warmed up, we allcelebrated what still is with another fresh salsa. Then on Friday we harvested the first fall carrots. They're still weedy because no frost has killed the tender galinsoga weeds yet. But when we stood up we saw for the first time that we're already in the midst of the fall leaf show. And we gratefully took some of these last borrowed time tomatoes home to make a soup. We hope you enjoy the harvest.
Your Farmer, Zoe
(for Dan, Karen, Abbe, Rebecca, Sunny and Ellen)