Fall is Here! October 20, 2014
The most refreshing and beautiful clouds rolled over the hills and engulfed the farm. They were mostly gray and white with the occasional packet of dark rain, their depth varied, spreading the mass of the clouds unevenly through the valley.
The air was cool and blowing briskly, announcing the showers that appeared to be close. Drops of water started to fall from the sky, tamping the dust down and releasing the smell I adore most - the musty and refreshing aroma that follows the mixing of water and dry soil.
The farm was prepared for the rain. Fields that housed our summer crops had been disked, ripped, disked again, land planed and seeded with our winter cover crop mix of legumes. Fall fields of vegetables were happy to receive a spritz of water. The showers faded in and out and then left, leaving the gorgeous, cool overcast cover and enough water to hold the dust down for a day, maybe two.
The cover crop seeds still lie, surrounded by dry soil, leaving us with the option to apply irrigation water with sprinklers or to wait for the next storm and hope it delivers enough water to germinate them. The tractor work and other operations were not stopped by this shower, but everyone did stop for a moment to soak in the refreshing change in weather. The scorching, hot summer days takes a toll on all things - people, crops and animals.
The tweety birds on the farm erupted in endless chatter over the event. They chirped and bustled about in an excited frenzy. The ground squirrels seemed motivated to gather more food for the winter. One of them ran brazenly by me to grab an old carrot that was left behind by a harvest crew, then ran by me again, disappearing in its hole in the earth. The resident flock of wild turkeys could be seen by the creek’s edge in the middle of the day with four deer hanging out near them enjoying the weather.
The satsuma mandarin crop is beginning to make the color transition from green to orange - they are still a bit tart for my liking, but their flavor is full. Carrots, kales, charts, radish, beets, Bok Choy, lettuce and fennel are all ready - harvest crews are bustling to get the crops out of the fields and into your boxes.
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