We want to share a little id bit of what is going on here on the farm as we prepare to start the CSA harvests, deliveries, and Wednesday farm gatherings.
It was a long cold spring and we waited patiently for the weather to change. It was not more than three weeks ago we had March temps, then all the sudden it took a drastic turn. Right now it is all hands on deck to get our babies in the ground. This week peppers, winter squash, the last of the tomatoes, and flowers will start sinking their roots into our loamy soils. Meanwhile we are nurturing those plant beings that have already been planted out. We are pruning and trellising tomatoes, fertilizing our wildly vigorous garlic patch, and weeding (already!).
Life is full for all of us, plants, animals, and farmers alike. We have been working 14 hour days. We are laboring double time as not only are we growing plants, we are also making necessary improvements and adjustments to infrastructure to accommodate the next phase in the life of our historic dairy farm and once Conservation Corps Camp during the building of the Wrightsville Reservoir. We have been adding massive amounts of compost to our soil, approximately 500 lbs. per 100’ garden bed. We have added almost 20 tons already this spring as a massive dose of fertility to get us off to a great tart. This hard work is already paying off by biologically animating or charging our beloved piece of earth. During the much anticipated rain last week we took a field walk in the evening and counted 5 huge earthworks basking on top of the rich soil in just a a 2 square foot section of the garden! In all our years of gardening we have never seen anything quite like that! Earthworms till and aerate the soil, creating networks of tunnels and pockets where water, nutrients, and micro organisms can find space to hang out in the soil structure. This process has been taxing on our bodies, as all this compost is dumped into wheelbarrows and raked onto each bed. However, all this work also gives promise to the healthiest and most abundant harvests to date, which you all will be part of.
Because of the late spring, and incredible amount of work we are doing to prepare our farm for this season and beyond, we are a few weeks later than last year on our brassicas like broccoli, cauliflower, and kohlrabi. And a few other root crops. There are always curveballs and new problems to solve, like snails and voles so far.
We are making the necessary changes and adaptations in our practices to accommodate the surprises this corner of the earth has for us. These are relatively minor complications, compared to the many advantages of our new home.
We have a barn and sheds to store all the things we need to conduct the symphony of the farm. We live right next to our garden, looking out at the fields as we write. This means that we can manage it all with as much diligence as possible. And we are just a short skip from Montpelier, so we are planing and envisioning the next phases of Ananda Gardens and we want all of you to be a part of it.
We will start humbly this year with our Wednesday CSA gathering for those of you how want to come to the farm. And we will grow into a space for our community to gather, connect, and celebrate all the beauty within and surrounding us. So stay tuned for more announcements of farm events and gatherings…..