Ahhh, Spring. A fickle temptress indeed. As soon as the snow recedes just enough from the slumbering garden space, I dream of tomatoes, watermelons, crazy fever dreams that are still about 6 months away. But still, it lures one to imagine beaches and birdsong and bonfires. In reality: Cold, cold, cold, wet. Then suddenly, in the blink of an eye or the snap of a finger, HOT, HOT, HOT (wet). Although allegedly a transitional season, I find this a deceptive label. Out here, in our Defiant Field (and many other places as well) it is really just a mash-up of Winter & Summer, sometimes alternatively, sometimes all at once. We have seen at least a foot of rain, we have seen fires in the woodstove to warm us deep into the heart of May, we have experienced several days near 90F already, hunkered through a few rounds of hail. BUT, any and everyday we have been able, we've been out prepping, flipping, weeding, watering, planting, praying, sweating, coaxing, celebrating, saddened. Basically, we've been farming in the Midbest Spring.
We were pulled away from the farm for a variety of reasons in May, so it may have been a bit more quiet over here, but we are using these long light-filled days to play the catch up game as best as we know how. Knowing deeply that there is no way to dupe Father Time, the wily old cuss, but trying our best to dance around his periphery, maybe if he doesn't notice, we get this second, minute, hour to complete the task while he obviously chuckles at our foolishness. But we try. We do try.
Because of and despite our best efforts, Spring is all about Growth. Helping us release the failures, (oh and there are those) the many hens lost this Spring to a coyote pack we just couldn't outsmart. The shallot crop lost to the cutworms, nestled so cozily in a thick mulch overwinter. But then we notice -The chicks have rapidly reached their ugly/cute tween stage. The piglets are getting noticeably bigger plowing their way quickly through spring pasture, lush and full. The first nest of Robins in the barn have fledged already. The Hummingbird feeder is busy day and night. The first generation of Monarch caterpillars is currently munching their way through our milkweed stands and the fireflies light our paths in the late late twilight as we close coops and breathe the soft Spring air deeply.
In the garden, the Spring favorites are readying. Beautiful and crisp Little Gem Lettuces, snappy Arugula, Pac Chois and Kale and the Brassica friends deepening green and soaking in all this moisture. Delicate and lovely Japanese (Salad/Spring) turnips ghostly white glow pushing up through the soft dark ground. Herbs readying as the pathway clover grows wild and unruly and pollinators of all kinds, especially the honeybees ,binge on their sweet nectar. Visit our Online Farmstand to complete a custom order and get our spring goodies delivered to your door!
Spring, a sprint, a heartbreak, a triumph, a defeat. She tries our patience, fatigues our bodies, and frustrates our minds. She enchants our spirits, swells our hearts, makes us fall in love all over again, and what a privilege to be here, doing this work for another round. ~Farmer Sarah