News from the Farm | January 30, 2023


What’s the news of the week? Wind, weeding, and waiting.

Wind: we had some fierce north winds multiple days over the past week. High winds (almost always from the north) are normal for us, particularly in the spring and fall, but that doesn’t mean we like them. Wind makes working outside pretty miserable, so a big thanks to our crew for powering through it. The wind can also stir up a lot of dust and really dry things out, especially new transplants. Last week’s wind, plus a few sunny days last week and the week before, did dry out the soil enough to do some weeding and transplanting. Early last week, the winds brought warm weather but by the end of last week, over the weekend, and this morning, it’s turned cold.

Weeding: with soils dry enough to get into the field, we finally were able to start chipping away at all the weeding. With the rain (16 inches) and our break, we haven’t been able to do anything since early December and there’s a lot of weeding to do, both with mechanical cultivation (weeding with a tractor) and lots of weeding by hand. A bit more about our weeding options here. Pretty much every field that’s not planted in cover crops will need some weeding, and we’ll also be taking out weeds as part of the standard processes of readying beds for transplanting.

Waiting (and watching): in addition to the constant eye on the weather forecast, we also were watching for the first flowers and lambs of the year. The first anemones have bloomed but no tulips yet. And the 2023 lambing season has begun! The first lamb was born on the 26th (last year the first was born on the 25th). We have 80 ewes that will give birth over the next month, with the majority having twins, though historically, many of our ewes have triplets. The lambs are adorable, but checking on them periodically through the day and night over the next month adds up to a bit of extra work on top of all the other activities we have going on! But the sheep are an important part of our farm and soil health, so the work is worth it.

– Elaine Swiedler, CSA Manager