Find out what’s happening on the farm from Farmer Alex, April, 2015

I’m feeling particularly grateful this Easter.  It seemed like winter was clinging on unusually deep into spring’s territory with temperatures still dipping below twenty degrees after the official change of seasons.  The days conducive for fields drying out have been few and far between.  Then finally, the sun came out this week with warmer temperatures and drying winds.  I woke up relieved and excited Saturday morning, basking in the glory of an errant weather forecast.  We did not get the inch of rain predicted Friday, and I knew that we would be in the fields by the end of the weekend!  There’s something exhilarating about the first tillage of the season; breaking up the cool, moist earth, freeing it from old man winter’s cold, lifeless grasp so it can breathe again.

Even though it is going to rain again soon, it’s important to loosen up the soil so next time we’ll be able to incorporate the residues of last year’s cover crops, mulches, and vegetable refuse.  The initial plowing is a huge first step, as it is always unpredictable when we’ll be able to get to work in the fields every year.  Seeing the greenhouse continue to fill up, with nowhere to put the quickly developing transplants definitely had stress levels rising.  This is why I was exceedingly grateful to spend Easter morning on the tractor, but still make it home for family dinner and to claim my Easter basket (thanks Mom!). 

There will be a lot of progress this month.  We are expecting to plant out our kale, peas, and cabbage within the next two weeks.  Also in that time frame we’ll seed carrots and potentially our potatoes in the fields.  We will continue to do tractor work as weather permits, while caring for the next succession of crops in the greenhouse.  Our tomatoes, peppers, and eggplant are all being seeded this week – hello summer bounty!  Two interns joined the Sandbrook Farm Crew this past week.  I am already excited about working with Meg and Devin this season.  Their energy, positivity, and bulging biceps are welcomed and timely additions.  Our third and final intern, Anthony, will be arriving next week.  We’re welcoming back Adam for his third season here, and Eileen for her second.  They both are filling significant roles here at Sandbrook.  I have to say I’m pretty excited about the team we have assembled this year, and the prospect of what we can accomplish!  Spring has finally sprung…farewell winter! 

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