Beyond Weeding

After working here for a little over two months, I can’t say enough about how awesome of a learning experience this has been for myself and others. After a hard day of work in the hot sun, moving fast to harvest everything for that evening, it really pays off when Alex and I get to witness people picking up what we harvested earlier in the day. veggies

After getting to know some of you in person, my sense is that a lot of you are part of the CSA not only because the food is fresh and organic, but because there is a strong community involvement which helps our farm operate. Instead of simply going to the supermarket and buying food that claims to be organic and sustainable, many of you get down on your hands and knees and witness exactly what is happening the hours before your pickup.

From the point of view of our farm crew, we get a chance to learn about why all of you genuinely care about eating fresh and locally grown produce; either because it is more environmentally friendly, or it simply provides your children a healthier alternative to junk food. Without these different circumstances and perspectives that cause us to care about what we eat, our farm simply would not exist.

More specifically, in terms of the workweek; the number of shareholders present at any shift has a direct impact on the output of the farm. On Wednesdays for example, we have the most shareholders signed up for pickup in the evening compared to any other day, thus the more shareholders harvesting with us from 7:00 am until noon that day, the more likely we can harvest every veggiworking in the fieldse that is ripened to be picked. If we only have one shareholder coming those mornings, we may have to forgo one vegetable on our harvest list simply because we don’t have enough time or hands to be able to harvest it. This past Wednesday for instance, there were very few additional volunteers at hand, and due to the amount of work we were able to accomplish that day, we made a late decision to cut peas from the pickup, and simply have pick your own.

Our CSA production is impacted just as strongly when it comes to weeding as well. Whether we are weeding kale, carrots, ovation mix, or our beloved radishes, the less weeds engulfing these crops, the faster we can harvest them during a future day, and the more likely these crops will flourish due to less competition (over sunlight, or nutrients from the soil) with weeds. While this task can sometimes seem rather menial while doing it, there is certainly a far reaching affect that it has on what we accomplish throughout the season.

Barn room this past Wednesday before pickup...Got veggies?

Barn room this past Wednesday before pickup…Got veggies?

In summary I can’t say enough about the numerous ways that out farm crew and all shareholders are affecting each other for the better. Not just in an economic sense, but mainly because the level of shareholder involvement allows us to accomplish and benefit from many things: fresh food, forming relationships, and witnessing all of the many intricacies of communal farming. Thank you all for being a part of our community! We look forward to our future morning in the fields with you all.

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