can you tell it's been a crazy year. Where does one begin with assessment of this one. Well, I'll begin and see how far I get today.
It was our lost year, the way Japan had a lost decade, as another farmer put it: Ctrl+Alt+Del.
That said I learned alot and alot is happening with the general Vermont ag scene that I think is going to make next year pretty darn interesting.
1)Things that don't seem to mind flooding at least on the Intervale soil where they can drain pretty qucikly: Asparagus, garlic (to an extent), peach trees. I'm not going to start a peach farm, but garlic and asparagus are something I am interesting in growing more of. Their limited harvest window also makes them interesting to me. Floods at certain times have no effect on them whatsoever.
2) did i tell you I figured out how to grow lots of chard far easier. Probably cause ive told everyone, but for me this is pretty exciting. It takes less time to pick and is more plentiful. space it in plugs and don't direct seed, just that simple.
3) good to have some higher ground. no way around the fact that that's a plus. for me that could be alot places within the intervale or outside. I am going to be farming some at south village next year. probably about a half acre plus hoophouses. so definitely alot of learning continuing. Haven't dealt that much with clay soils or hoophouses, but I'm excited for the balance, and to see how the relationship grows.
4) this would have been learned in a normal year: deer fence works
5) I can grow corn. I was scared to do this, just having never done it at Quail Hill where rachel and I apprenticed, but spurred by early losses I gave it a go, and half of the CSA did recieve pretty good corn (will be better next year cause actually planned for) before hurricane. deer fence made this possible too.
6) Having a CSA is great. Way beyond the money part, which obviously can't be overstated as important to our continued farming, our members were so supportive, and make me want to come back next year and give them the season they deserve.
More assessment, like limited results from the survey coming out to you next week, have a good thanksgiving!