Sometimes a beautiful week makes a load of difference, in lots of ways. It certainly helps the plants, which is great. It also gives the weeds a boost, which is less than ideal, but it also provides us with ample time out in the field to fight the good fight. Though we’ve been harvesting for CSA boxes and market on a regular basis, my focus these past few weeks has been cultivation. We have a few big crops that were a bit choked with weeds while we had to devote large amounts of time to continuing to transplant. This week, however, we finished cultivating our onions and put a big dent in our potatoes, carrots, and beets.
This is a unique part of the season, when we are simultaneously trying to accomplish everything all at once. We still have a good bit of planting to do, we have food to harvest, but we also have to play catchup on weeding so that we can make our harvests more secure in the middle term. I might be alone in this feeling, but I find that cultivation is actually the most gratifying task of all. Sure, when you plant, you get to look out in the field to perfect rows of new plants, and when you harvest you get to wash and pack and share your bounty, but cultivation carries with it a whole range of, well, feelings. When you zip up and down rows with a razor hoe killing weeds in the thread stage, you congratulate yourself on your impeccable timing, knowing how much work you saved your two-weeks-from-now self. Conversely, when you’re in “save the crop” mode, you curse your month-ago self for letting it slide, but the feeling of accomplishment when you reach the end of a task is commensurately more gratifying. More than any other task on the farm, weeding is a mental game. You psych yourself up, you set yourself goals, you push yourself physically, and sometimes you find yourself hoping that your enthusiasm becomes infectious. It might seem like an odd thing to feel passionately about, but if anyone wants to catch the weeding fever, I know where you can get your fix!
Thinking about: surprise visits, stitches in time, connectivity
Eating: homemade pizza with Italian sausage and creamy spinach sauce, homemade pulled pork on ciabatta rolls, delicious, crisp, buttery head lettuce salads
Reading: fine print, Plutarch’s Selected Essays on Love, the Family, and the Good Life