Monday, June 1, 2015

The New Land

April 13, 2015

“The land is the only thing in the world worth working for, worth fighting for, worth dying for, because it's the only thing that lasts".....Gerald O'Hara

News from the Farm: The New Land:  The Good, the Bad, the Beautiful
Finally, the weather cooperated and we were able to begin working the New Land (243 we call it...Round Hill Road).  It's one thing to see it under the snow, dreaming of vegetables and herbs, it's a whole other thing to get the tractor, disc, box blade and tiller moved and dive in the Black Dirt. The whole moving thing makes me very nervous ...tractors, trailers, chains, forklifts and more chains...ever since my finger was pinched and nearly de-fingered while unloading some new equipment. It was only seven stiches and it recovered nicely, but the trauma lives on. 

I was surprised how good in shape the fields were considering how long it's been since they were farmed (1996 I learned this weekend, onions).  And it's amazing what a tractor and disc and a few hours can do.  (This particular tractor is equal to 32 horses and only required 10 gallons of diesel fuel for many hours work).   And it was surprising to see how big that weeping willow tree grew in just 18 years.  So big in fact, that we needed to prune several of the dead branches.  It's probably not the best thing to leave it growing in the
Black Dirt, but it's so beautiful and it'll be nice to have some shade...for us and you, the CSA members when you visit the farm to pick your own vegetables. 

The Good:
  • Lots of road frontage.
  • Lots of parking (a previous landscaping owner dumped a lot of gravel with plans to build a large garage).
  • Short rows. (Some of the rows can be very long out here in the Black Dirt, so long that some members didn't want to bother walking the length of the field to collect some basil).
  • Water & electricity.  At least the potential for both.
  • A weeping willow tree.
The Bad:
  • Lots of garbage. (I picked up at least 8 contractor bags of bottles, beer cans, plastic bags, Styrofoam cups and junk).  And because we have so much road frontage (good) there will also be lots of people throwing stuff out their windows...littering (bad).
  • It's wet. That's the first thing that he (a retired local farmer) told me.  "These fields are wet. You need to ditch (this is not a simple or inexpensive task) every year.  And make sure you get it ditched right, with the water flowing the right way," he said pointing to the direction that the water needs to flow to.
The Beautiful:
  • The view.  We still have the same expansive Big Sky view of High Point Monument in New Jersey along with the prevailing, and I do mean prevailing, winds (the wind tunnel we call it).
  • The Weeping Willow Tree. I don't know what to name her (but I know it's a she).  I too have suffered from the weeping willow affliction...depression.  Not so much that I've had to be "farm-aceutically" medicated for it...well, maybe I have.  I think this whole farming thing has saved me!
  • Friends.  And community. And Mustafa.  I still have some of his seeds. 


Lisa & Jacob

P.S. The 2015 form is on the website.

P.P.S. Above photo is of my
friend, Mustafa,  who grows the most wonderful Bangladeshi greens and pinks (it's like red spinach and will turn your sauce pink like Cat in the Hat Comes Back.  We do too!)  And we hope you do too.  Come another year).

Keep up with us on Facebook.  

Don't forget the Open House on Saturday, May 2 from 11-3pm at 27 Utter Avenue, Hawthorne, NJ. 

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