This is the time of year when feelings of excitement about the farm and all its possibilities seems like a distant memory. Instead, excitement is felt when considering a chilly day in November...wrapped in a blanket waiting for a snow fall...farm beds laid to rest, weeds no longer growing, many months until my body will feel this much exhaustion again.
I know it seems I have an obsession with the “seasonal life.” But when you live and work outside, the seasons rule everything. The ebb and flow of work and rest, set-backs and opportunities, hot and cold...they serve as a constant reminder that the only constant in life is change. Just when you think you have control over something or feel set in a routine, the Universe and Mother Nature conspire to remind who is really in charge. Answer: it’s not you. This is a challenging way to live, but ultimately the seasonal life has opened my eyes to a larger picture. It has taught me to let go of perceived control, be open to change and new opportunities, accept all things as fleeting. The heat will come and go, the flea beetles will come and go. Similarly, the bad days and sad days, euphoric days and hard days - they will come and go. Never permanent, always passing. Living in tune like this has helped me deal with a lot of life’s challenging situations. Any situation I’m dealing with at present needs to be dealt with and moved through, but it is not a lasting state - just like the month of August. My ability to be present in the situation and not get swept away by the emotional weight of “oh my god this is my life now!” will determine how focused I am in handling the situation and how emotionally intact I’ll be on the other side.
This is the attitude I’m trying to carry with me this month: this too shall pass. While the weight of the world (or just the weight of the entire farm season) can easily overwhelm me as I look out at tired brassicas and tall grass, and feel all my sore muscles, I am trying to remember that this too shall pass; and the more focused I can be in my actions right now, the healthier the farm will remain and I will be more emotionally stable on the other side for whatever challenges arise next.
We are gearing up for a little vacation in the next couple weeks, so we are busting our butts trying to get everything looking and feeling good before we take off. The next few days will entail a lot of weeding, turning over spent beds, and cutting back flowers so they continue to bloom through the fall.
Join us for a casual pizza night at the farm this Sunday evening from 6 to 9pm. Bring toppings to share, your own beverages, and a layer for when the sun goes down. We are hoping to host regular pizza nights soon and want to get our systems down! Come help us get in the groove and test out the pizza before we start charging $$ ;)
Week #10 Veggies, Herbs, and Suggestions
Tomatoes! - They're here! This variety is called Primo. It is a red slicing tomato with a mild flavor, but excellent shape and versatility. This is a great tomato for a salad, sandwich, soup, or pasta sauce. Keep tomatoes out of the fridge: if the temp is too cold, the tomato flesh starts to get starchy and the flavor suffers.
Cherry tomatoes - These sungolds are everyone's favorite! They are the perfect tomato for snacking, slicing into a salad, or enjoying with basil, mozzarella, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper.
Ailsa Craig Sweet Onions - such a delicious and versatile onion: cooked, raw, pickled, or anything in between!
Rainbow Chard - This hearty green is wonderful when cooked down in a stir fry or soup.
Beet Greens - The color of this variety will leave you with no questions as to why it's called Bull's Blood. This has a similar texture to Chard and can be used identically.
Peppers - A mix of hot, sweet, and mild peppers will be available for your choosing!
Scallions - A perfect allium to add to any salad, soup, rice dish, taco, or dipping sauce for an extra crunch and flavor punch.
Basil - This green Genovese basil is perfect with tomatoes and some cheese.
Napa Cabbage - We love to make slaw with Napa Cabbage. You can make a vinegar-based slaw by mixing any number of chopped veggies with spices and a combination of red wine vinegar, balsamic, rice vinegar, and sesame or olive oil. Add lots of salt and let sit in the fridge for a few hours. A creamy slaw is also easy: combine mayo, yogurt, and/or sour cream with a little vinegar and spices and add to veggie mixture with some seeds or nuts for extra crunch.
Cucumbers - Refreshing, crunchy, and delicious!
Edible Flowers - A garnish to any dish or drink - or an integral part to a salsa or chimichurri!
Tithonia Diversifolia (Mexican Sunflower) - This is such an attractive summer plant! It is easily over 4 feet tall with lush green leaves and velvet-soft stems. The bright orange flowers are picture-perfect and add a beautiful pop to the garden. They aren't great to work with in a bouquet, but they bring a smile to my face in the field and are pretty easy to grow.