Except for a week in November and a week in January, we have had quite a warm winter, a very wet warm winter. It has been great growing weather, the type of weather we wish we had in the spring and fall, the type of weather that we have, in general, lost. We stopped harvesting and delivering shares in mid-January. It is a decision we have to make every winter, the result not of an inability to grow through that time, but instead, not enough human hours between Lalo and I to continue doing it and getting ready for the spring season and catching up on mountains of paperwork that get put off all season. It is one of the many farm-labor-economy conundrums that keeps local, organic food out of the supply chain. It is something that really frustrates me, and something we continue to try to solve. In fact, we still have plenty of food in our fields (kale, collards, chard, spinach, lettuce, bok choy and other Asian mustards, sprouting broccoli, cabbage, carrots, parsnips, and Jerusalem artichokes, not to mention hundreds of pounds of winter squash in our basement). Some of our winter CSA members have picked veggies weekly, taking advantage of the bounty. The rest of it has fed us and our animals. Much of it, in the end, will be donated or just get tilled in, as we begin planting for our April harvests.
Despite the winter veggies still left in the fields, we have turned all of our attention to the spring harvest. The greenhouse is full of transplants. Many of which we will transplant out as soon as there is a dry window. We have begun seeding in the fields (carrots, peas, and spinach). And our van is full of seed potatoes from New Sprouts in NC, ready to be planted. We continue seeding every week; we are now seeding summer crops like bell peppers and tomatoes. When we can’t get a tractor on the fields, we are doing odd jobs around the farm like fixing fences and tractor maintenance that we only get to this time of year and putting together paperwork for our annual organic inspection, taxes, and grant reports.