It’s been a long winter. For many months, I rationed out vegetables from the farm that had been braised and frozen. And, I bemoaned the fact that butternut squash purchased at the supermarket tasted bland and colorless compared to the sweet and silky Restoration Farm squash that I pureed and flavored with maple for Christmas dinner.
But, in just four weeks, the 2010 distribution season begins anew, and this visit is just a taste of what’s ahead.
We hike past freshly turned fields, scented with manure that will burst with cutting flowers as the weather warms.
Dan offers a short tutorial on the fundamentals of cover crops and how they nourish the soil.
A buckwheat cover crop provides different nutrients to the soil.
In the Spring field, early greens in neat rows poke through the soil. Tender lettuce enjoys this cool snap and will be the some of the first produce harvested. An entirely new field has been dug for potatoes and experiments are underway with asparagus and rhubarb. Dan also reminds us that there will be plenty of kale and Swish chard should any of us be concerned about a shortage.
Caroline talks about her favorite field, which she calls “the sweet field.” Indeed, there are succulent berries in our future. The blackberry bushes already look out of control, and strawberry plants are covered with delicate white blossoms. While blueberries are still a year away, the bushes have taken root.
George proudly shows off the new tool storage sheds.
Caroline and Dan stress that it is not just about the vegetables and that a sense of community is cultivated at Restoration Farm. Indeed, the word “community” comes first in “CSA” and how fitting that we all share in fresh berries and home baked cookies from Caroline’s mom, Susan Fanning at the conclusion of the tour.
©2010 T.W. Barritt All Rights Reserved