“Here we are at the solstice, and doesn’t it feel like it? The forecast calls for clear weather until Monday, and it has been clear all week, so we, like every other farmer in the region, are maniacally making hay. We have 300 large round bales of grass hay down now, and about half of it baled. I love these long days of focused, urgent effort, when everyone works together to get it in before rain, and large bets are laid on which way the clouds blow, and whether or not the repair on the baler will hold. We switched from square bales to round bales a couple of years ago, so we no longer spend sweaty summer evenings running through the field, throwing bales onto the wagon, then loading and stacking them in the hot barn loft, dizzy with effort and trying not to get walloped on the head when a bale fell off the elevator. My memories of those times are all happy ones, even the night when I tried to keep pace with Matt Volz, stacking, and got sick on the new green bales. Haying is not so demanding now, physically, but there is still that enjoyable sense of urgency and unity that I have always loved.
Vegetable team, led by Kirsten Liebl, is feeling the solstice burn. They are weeding, transplanting, and copiously harvesting now, all at once. There is so much coming in from the field for distribution today, Anya and Isabelle came in at 5 this morning to get a jump on it in the cool dawn. The obvious star of the share this week is the strawberry….” Continue Reading this Essex Farm Note.