News From the Farm | July 1, 2019

July already. The crew just brought in four bins of orchid watermelons hopeful that they would all sell well before the July 4th holiday.  This is the first big watermelon harvest of the season — each summer brings it’s string of ‘firsts’ as we look forward to each crop. 

Walking across farm fields, down furrows and over graveled roads I know that crew members have also walked these furrows over and over, year in and year out. Every square foot of ground has been travelled by many other eyes and grown uncounted seasons of crops. Walking down a field of freshly prepared, unplanted beds I came across a pile of feathers, all that remained of a bird — Probably this was the scene of a fierce struggle the previous night. It was fresh and I think that I was the first to stumble upon it. 

At the farm, we talk about ‘turning over’ the fields, when one crop is finished and the field is being prepared for the next one. Sometimes this can take awhile, but lately the spring fields have been moving through their cycles into summer and fall fields in a matter of days. There are fields in all different stages at this moment.  In addition to a few fields now bare and waiting to be planted, there are cranberry beans almost ready to pick; winter squash that will not be ready until the Fall, celery root and leeks that will grow undisturbed all summer long and asparagus with 5-tall fronds that brushed across my sides as I walked down the furrow. The last of the carrots were being picked by one crew while potatoes were being dug by another. A tractor was driving up and down cultivating weeds out of one field and in another sheep were making breakfast out of some already harvested broccoli and chickens were clucking contentedly on the edges of the peach orchard. 

From this point forward, the summer harvest is going to explode — melons, tomatoes and all of the other summer crops  — their harvest will be the consuming focus of each day over the next few months.  

—Judith Redmond

For the last few years we have built a shade structure over our pepper field to protect the pepper fruit from sun burn. It is always quite amazing to observe its creation in a matter of only a few days.