Week 17 from Valley Flora

  • Napa Cabbage
  • Rainbow Carrots
  • Eggplant
  • Rossa di Milano red onions - an open-pollinated Italian variety with high sugar and pungency, great for cooking. Excellent keepers - should store for months in cool, dry conditions.
  • Sweet Peppers
  • New Potatoes - the last dig from the field, a mix of Harvest Moon, Painted Purple, Red Gold and Yellow
  • Tomatoes
  • Beets

On Rotation:

  • Sweet Corn

Fall, Officially!

The autumnal equinox takes place at 12:21 pm today, making it official: the next of my favorite seasons is here. I'm pretty sure they're all my favorite, but the arrival of fall is something I relish especially - in particular when it's attended by 3" of wondrous rain, like we had this past weekend. I think for all of us on the farm it feels like a much-needed change from the knock-down, drag-out final round of summer, when we are all feeling our dustiest and most tired. Our final week of summer was a squirrel-scurry ahead of the rain: everyone on the crew teamed up to get all the winter squash out of the field (by far, our heaviest endeavor), to get the dry beans harvested, and to get our final variety of onions cleaned and stored safely under cover. We were all ready to go home on Friday and take it slow while the rain came drumming down on Saturday (I got my tomatoes canned, and some cherry bomb peppers, too). It was well worth the scramble, though: the barn and greenhouse are bulging at the seams now with squash, onions and potatoes and we've used up every last storage bin and box on the property. All that, and there are still four beds of potatoes to dig and put somewhere...

It's startling how quickly dry grass goes green on the heels of that first rain. There's humidity in the air and every now and then during this warm week I've gotten little wafts of east coast - some hard-to-pinpoint combination of leaf moulder, steamy soil, September air, which spin me back momentarily - just a flit of the synapses - to my early college days in Massachusetts. I love the tilt of the earth, all 23.5 degrees of it. This occurred to me this morning when my kids and I were talking about the equinox and balancing eggs (turns out that's a myth, BTW; you can balance an egg any old day of the year if you practice enough): but what if we were spinning straight up and down on our axis and the seasons never changed?! 

That'd be terrible! I'm so glad our planet went wobbling out into orbit partially tipped over, all cattywampus and perfect.