And that is why we made the post we did. We all gain strength in the telling and the understanding. And, when we get ourselves to talk (or write about it) it usually means we are ready to move on.
And, if you don't believe this isn't a cycle for your farmers (and likely other farmers who do what we do), consider this post from December of 2013 extolling the virtues of a perfect, but flawed, season on the farm. And, in case you want to see the other side of the coin - the season when the farmers think all the rows will be straight and the weeds will be well-behaved, go read about Farmer Delusional Syndrome.
One way of moving on is to remind ourselves of what is going well. Because there ARE things that have gone, or are going, quite well. In fact, we're very aware that we've had a pretty good season compared to others who have fought a very difficult battle with the weather this year.
1. Excellent variety in our shares
The contents of our shares this season have been very good, if we do say so ourselves. Thus far, our shareholders have received thirty different vegetables in their shares. The value received is well above the cost for the season and the quality has been very good.
In short, the CSA has gone very, very well this far into the season and I'm sure we'll do a decent job for the rest as well. Remember, we let things on the farm bother us, this is true. Yes, many things didn't and aren't going the way we wanted them to. But, no matter what, we have found ways to provide our members with an excellent experience.
2. Excellent people in our CSA farm share program
|Thank you all for a great festival!|
But, this is another reason why we ride the roller coaster we do. We very much want to do well for our share holders. We take mistakes or failures on the farm even more personally because they could reduce the quality of the CSA experience we want our members to have. And, when something doesn't go particularly well, we do everything we can to minimize the impact to our members. It's part of our commitment to the program and it's just the way we think it needs to be.
3. Really, we got some major things accomplished this year.
|Getting a new high tunnel up and running was no small thing|
We should not forget that we did put up our second high tunnel in June and we have still managed to keep everything going this year - despite having a good week taken away form our normally very busy planting/weeding time. We actually had a hatching of our own ducklings this year - which is also a new thing for us. We'll count that as a fairly major accomplishment, though we can't take much credit for the actual efforts our ducks put into it. And, we finally get to re certify the West half of our farm as organic this year. What a relief that is to us!
4. There have been some very successful crops this season.
There is a reason peas were featured in more than one blog post this year. And, the cucumbers did very well for an abbreviated period of time. So, we really did mind your peas and cukes! I took a quick look at the numbers and realized that part of the issue was that we had a rough year with the small cukes (Boothby's Blonde, Parade and True Lemon) - and some of that was simply a matter of running out of time to harvest. As it was, we picked a record number of A&C Pickling (858) cucumbers and just missed a record with Marketmore 76 (952).
|It's still hard to believe this year's onion crop|
support our pollinators on the farm. We attribute part of the effort to a renewed commitment this year to getting annual flowers interplanted into our crops this year. We've done this since we started the farm, but recent seasons found us having some trouble getting the flowers into the field at the levels we would prefer to see. We'll add some pictures later - but I witnessed some of the rewards just this week while I was harvesting. In a very short period of time, I witnessed at least 2 dozen monarchs, 4 hummingbirds and countless bees and other smaller insects in the row of zinnias by the tomatoes.