Exploring new ways of seeing, new ways of being with an open heart and an open mind
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
The Farm Across the River
Snow is falling ever so softly, and I have to say it's a vast improvement over days where nothing is happening except steel gray skies and their ongoing threat. I prefer snow, but even more, I prefer thunderstorms. I'm already looking forward to summer clouds full of the promise of thunder and lightning and a downpour that turns everything a brighter shade of green.
I'm also looking forward to the promise contained in a letter I received this morning. My neighbors across the bridge have forwarded their plan to our county commissioners for a u-pick farm: vegetables, berries and flowers. I spoke about this last summer in my post, "Community: A River Flows Through It." We stood on the bridge that spans the river running alongside both of our properties and he talked to me then of the changes coming, that they were planning to embark on this new phase of farming. And I couldn't be happier about it. I will be able to walk to get my groceries. I wrote an email to the county commissioner listed on the letter to express my support and gratitude for their new adventure in farming. It will be a great asset to our little community. I'm certain it will pass with flying colors.
I had already made the decision to concentrate more on my flowers this year, getting them well-cared for, providing ground cover to help allay the endless weeding and to plant only a very small amount of vegetables. Once I get the flowers in a good place and feel that I have them not just under control, but where I can enjoy them more and fret over them less, then I will move into more vegetable gardening. This letter affirms my decision. I will frequent their farm, go there to get my berries and veggies, along with the farmer's market in town, and support their efforts until I expand my own.
In the meantime, Buddy has been out rolling in the snow, rubbing his face against it and living with that joyful abandon dogs seem to have in abundance. I do believe he's going to be my greatest teacher.
Winslow Homer "Fresh Eggs"
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This is indeed very good news. Your very own 'farmer's market' right on the doorstep.
Vegetable growing, we have always thought, is terribly time consuming and fraught with difficulties, pests and diseases. Far better to let your neighbours do the hard work for you and simply reap the fruit of their labours, so to speak.
Whatever, we agree with you completely that this will be a marvellous boost for your local community!!
Jane and Lance, I believe you're exactly right. Vegetables are a great deal of work, especially when it's just for myself. It seems that supporting other gardeners/farmers is a wiser use of my time and energy. Thanks so much for visiting.ReplyDelete
Hey, Teresa! Buddy rolling in the snow. I wish we had some of that down here. That's great news about the farming community plan. Walk to get your groceries. What a deal. Small farms and local food. You are doing some really great things up there.ReplyDelete
I can tell you are chomp'n at the bit for gardens and flowers and to be able to get out and dig in the dirt with Buddy at your heels. Me too, actually and it will come. Minnesota is so wonderfully ideal in the summer. I can smell the earth from here.ReplyDelete
Hey, Jack! Yeah, it was a great sight. I imagine moisture in any form would be a welcome sight in your part of Texas. I am so looking forward to the close proximity of that farm fresh food. It is a good place to be.ReplyDelete
Manzi, I am. Need warm earth. Soon. The greens of Minnesota are hard to beat, aren't they?
Interesting and what is needed everywhere plus being promoted and encouraged by government but that won't happen..ReplyDelete
It's clear our empire is in decline. The days of shipping vegetables from the west coast to the east coast will be coming to an end.
Want to create some jobs well this is a way to do it.
Here is something to think about.
I'm sure where Teresa lives that the land was homesteaded as the land was where I grew up maybe 300 miles directly south. That means four homes on a section of land. (one mile square)One of the first things these guys did was plant trees for protection from the elements and for food as well. Each place had it's own set of outbuildings and many houses were built for processing animals in the basement. Gardens were massive but family's were large too as it took a lot of bodies to get all the work done.
What I'm getting at that in many ways each of these farms were self sufficient. What a place it must have been. Corporate farming won big and that's been a negative in my opinion.
Where I live in NW Colorado the average number of frost free days is 52.
Vegetables grown in the mid west even on a large scale would kick anything that came from cali right in the ass. Can we have our flavor and all the rest of it back please.
Your post has such a wholesome, hopeful feel about it, and what wonderful news it must be to know there will be a u-pick farm so close at hand. You must keep us posted as the spring and summer wears on, and best of luck with your flowers this year, and then your vegetables. I like to put in some herbs amongst the flowers; parsley and feverfew to name some.ReplyDelete
One Fly, Thank you for your contribution here. Those self-sufficient farms were started for a reason, a very good one. We were sold a bill of goods, mainly that our lives needed more goods and they had just the guys in mind to supply it. I am looking forward to a return to the land. I do not see it as going backward at all, but as the real hope for our future on this planet and we best get started. I love your closing question. What my neighbors will be doing is exactly that.ReplyDelete
Penny, Thank you. There's something about spring, despite today's snow, that brings out the hope in me: Hope springs eternal? :) I've been thinking of an herb garden close to the kitchen, but putting a few amongst the flowers is a great idea! Thank you for that. You can be sure I will keep you posted. Last summer, I thought I would wear out my welcome here in Bloggerville with my incessant talk of living off the land and hope for the future of our planet, Earth. She's a beaut, and well worth saving.ReplyDelete
This phase of farming was once widespread before row crops overtook them for profits.It is a lot of work to manage.ReplyDelete
Hi Teresa, this is wonderful to hear! We really need to get back to community, this "isolation" thing we've been "growing" for the past 20 or so years is really counter productive...remember "Welcome Wagon" growing up?ReplyDelete
Funny, I have done the opposite, let the flowers go pretty much (well, the iris seem to have a determined mind of their own, but herbs work in between) and focus on vegetables, I have neighbors who do flowers, each to what their own strengths/interests are, I reckon...:)
This is wonderful news for you. Any time you can get home grown it's a pleasure. The flavor is so much better. I started a 20 X 30 garden at the city plots this year, and am amazed at how many others are participating.ReplyDelete
I love the local farmers markets, but sometimes their prices are so high it makes it difficult to support the local growers. I understand the cost are high for them to grow...but my budget just doesn't allow for that. It's hopefully going to change with my own garden this year. So far it's only set me back $25.00 for the plot...and then some for the seeds.
Good luck with your flower garden. Are you having any issues with rabbits this year? Their actually eating everything in sight in my perennial garden...including evergreens! Silly wabbits!
Steve, it is, indeed, a lot of work, even a vegetable garden, but I would sure love to see more gardening and less reliance on our existing food systems. I hope to become more and more self-reliant as time goes on. Something to work towards anyway.ReplyDelete
"I thought I would wear out my welcome here in Bloggerville with my incessant talk of living off the land and hope for the future of our planet, Earth."ReplyDelete
Need more like you with us!
Tom, I do remember WW. Those were the days....ReplyDelete
I just bought this place last summer and feel the need to get a handle on what's here, what I need to do to caretake the land. The previous owner was a master gardener and left several large and beautiful beds that I feel need attending. Meanwhile, I will acquaint myself more with the vegetable gardening aspect, finding out what I can and cannot manage on my own. It's all a process, learning as I go... :) You certainly have found some great ways to become more self-reliant.
MG, I've found our local farmer's market to be fairly reasonable, with a great selection. I love those community gardens. We have one here as well, and many participate. Last year I barely ever left my place in order to stay on top of things. I may choose to do the same this year, it's a good place to be, but I need to make certain I'm balancing it all out. I'm still quite a way from having to worry about flower eating rabbits (and deer). Late, very late spring here, but I use a natural repellent, which smells on application, but dissipates for humans while still being effective with animals. My veggie garden is behind a fence, thankfully.ReplyDelete
Twix are for kids... :)
I love my farmers' market, and the chance to get all those fresh veggies and fruits. One of the reasons we moved to this part of the country for retirement is that it has such an abundance of fresh food available. I applaud your decision to watch your groceries as they grow up... :-)ReplyDelete
That's an important consideration. It's partly why I feel I was drawn back to Minnesota. Thanks, Jan.ReplyDelete
The you-pick farm sounds like a great idea. I think it would be very satisfying to pick berries and veggies, and as you say it can give you ideas of what you may want to do in your own garden later.ReplyDelete
Hi Nancy, I love the picking and I don't have to worry about the possible problems of growing until I learn more. It's actually a good lesson in planning and patience for me. Thanks!ReplyDelete
I love u-pick. Plus my own small fruit and vegetable garden, and the eggs my neighbors share, and the box of fruits and vegetables that arrives most Thursdays from a farm to our north that delivers. I know it's cheaper and probably more efficient just to go to Safeway, but it doesn't seem quite as real, for some reason.ReplyDelete
You Still Have Snow?! I hope it warms up for you soon! As a Grower, I guess the rain & thunder is important.Yes, I love the odd rumble of thunder myself!ReplyDelete
Linda, You have a great local food system there. I love the "deliver what's fresh" aspect of it. What I'm so grateful for, is that when I decided to back off a little from the veggies, just for now, and concentrate on the flowers, this sprang into place right here, not more than 1/4 mile away. It seemed rather timely. :) Plus, I really want to support what they're doing.ReplyDelete
Tony, Still a little snow coming down, but it was all gone by evening. I am very ready for sunny skies. There's something about thunder that I find oddly comforting. Thanks for popping by!
Love the idea of supporting your neighborhood farms.ReplyDelete
BB, Snow. Yes. A steady falling until late afternoon and then it all disappeared. Sorta sunny today, but still chilly.ReplyDelete
Farmers markets are wonderful. The fresh vegetables are so wonderful. I can't wait until it warms up more here so I can start to think about my garden :)ReplyDelete
Josh, Yes, they add so much goodness to the summer.ReplyDelete
The super stores carry amazingly high quality produce, shipped in from around the world...and at an environmental cost. How wonderful when one can support the efforts of local growers!ReplyDelete
Hi Paul, I believe it's key to the future, certainly a valuable aspect. Thank you.ReplyDelete