November 21, 2018

Fall Thanks


The mornings are getting cold, cold enough to cause the citrus trees to remember they are tropical trees living in a place that is just warm enough through the winter to keep them from dying. They show this through their leaves in the early morning curled back like they are reacting to a bee sting. The smoother and lighter green of the underside of their leaves is visible. By mid-morning, they are back to normal.

The summer crops are done, and the farm team is in a frenzy to get those fields disked, leveled and planted with a nitrogen fixing cover crop before it rains. These cover crops will protect the soil through the winter from eroding away with the rains. They will choke out weed seeds from growing into mature weeds. They will transform the nitrogen gas in the atmosphere into organic nitrogen that our plants will take from the soil, and they will sequester carbon into the soil doing their part to stifle climate change. Yes, cover crops are miracle makers.
Turkeys with Mud Stuck to Their Feet

Right now, those cover crops are seeds in bags in the back of a pickup. Right now, those fields are bare dirt, a light brown covered in a texture of small clods smoothed over. A flock of resident wild  turkeys walk across the field. There are about 30 of them, and they walk in the shape of a triangle. A lead turkey in the front decides where they will go, and the rest are following. They walk slowly, their heads pecking at items in the soil, then looking up, then pecking some more. I imagine that velociraptor dinosaurs looked similar upright with their jerky movements, heads twitching side to side.


With fall here, I am struck by how quickly the end of the year has arrived, and with it, we have reason to celebrate. For Thanksgiving, we are blessed to be expecting a full house of family that consists of generations that have come both before and after mine (third-generation in the photo above). With the season to give thanks, we all wish to thank you for choosing to participate in your local food system and sustaining this farm’s way of life.

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