• Accokeek Foundation

Field Notes: Volume 16, Number 22

This Week’s Harvest

  1. Fennel Frond

  2. Scallions

  3. Arugula or Mizuna

  4. Green Cabbage

By Colette Buchholtz

Each week, we seem to hem and haw over what information will get distributed to SHAREholders about the state of the farm, and how best to convey those thoughts and ideas. We don’t have speechwriters, though we did have a blog writer for awhile and were grateful for the assistance. But those posts lacked our voice, and the voice of the farm itself. So here we are, now writing these words ourselves and wondering what in the world to write about (though not from lack of options). We want to share with you the news of the week, the crop report (as Midwest farm radio refers to it), the weather outlook, what’s buzzing about.

To say we enjoyed the sunshine the last couple of weeks would be an understatement. We floated about the farm on a sunshine high, as giddy and enlightened as the migrating monarchs. And things felt quiet and peaceful. The last of the standing water finally dissipated, and we felt firmer ground beneath our feet. We got some weeding done—enough to give the remaining fall crops a fighting chance. We did some organizing and cleaning up. And we got some rest.

And then we blinked, came to, and realized that it’s the middle of October and the garden is in a sad state of affairs. The sunshine wasn’t enough—too little, too late, as they say. Quite honestly, I stopped mentally adding up the rain gauge contents when we topped 20 inches, so I don’t know what the final damage was for what seemed like a long, long spell of rain. We took a hit with Irene, but it was downhill from there. Sure, what can one do about a so-called 500-year rain event? And all the inches that followed?

To answer that today, in the here and now, there is nothing we could have done to change what happened. But if we’re not always looking for better ways, innovative thinking, bright ideas, we wouldn’t be good farmers. And so we don’t just walk away from events like this downtrodden and despairing (though admittedly we are disappointed, because this isn’t just a job). We’re already analyzing, questioning, researching. Because sust