Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Mornings On The Farm


I am out of the habit of writing.  I’ve let too much time pass and the small triggers that used to send me scurrying to my keyboard pass unnoticed.  Perhaps it isn’t that they pass unnoticed, but that they are more subtle in this life.  A deer passing through the woods doesn’t call attention to itself like a bull humpback charging vertically out of the sea.

Still, the wild creatures of this land reveal themselves to us almost every day.  I’ve taken to waking early and drinking my coffee at my desk.  Absorbing the deep black fuel I stare out of my window over my garden and the 20 acres of hay field in front of my little house.  This morning surprised me with five turkeys crossing from one tree line to another.  We have seen these birds before, but they are always a welcome sight.

The garden gives respite from the days work and we walk in it daily.  The corn has grown tall and the tomato plants are heavily laden with green fruit.  Okra is the new star with the most beautiful flower we have seen yet in the garden.  Cauliflower and broccoli have just been planted for a fall harvest.  Watermelon grows fat and the pumpkins are still small yellow blobs much the size of a golf ball.  Even this late in the season we still find something new every time we inspect the plants.  It is rare for us to buy any produce.  Our diet is fresh and colorful and I like it.

This morning I am off with the New Holland tractor to grade a small gravel bed for our irrigation pump.  The recent flooding nearly cost us our pump and engine.  Water rose in our little river over 12 feet and flooded our bottom 10 acres.  Now that the rains have stopped we need to get fertilizer to our hay and that takes water.  If it doesn’t rain soon the pump will again be throwing water onto our field dissolving the nitrogen and carrying the nutrients down to the roots our grass.

The season is getting late and I fear our grass isn’t yet established enough to survive a long hard freeze this winter.  Only time will tell.


  1. Sounds ideal. I think you will be pleasantly surprised by the young grass.

  2. Brother, your sailing video's and blog were a masterpiece. They were amazing. But now I check this site every few days hoping to see that you're writing again. Each time I look, you're still away. I hope all is well and if you are in fact permanently 'out of the habit of writing', so be it. Enjoy your life, thanks for the past videos and I wish you well.

  3. The reason is that wind and water erosion degrades the soil on the conventional farm while the soil on the organic farms steadily improve in organic matter, moisture, microbial activity and other soil quality indicators.