Whether bad or good, nothing in life is here to stay forever. It is an undeniable and inescapable reality of our human existence. As each of our moms likely told us during a difficult time, "this, too, shall pass", and she was always right. There are few places that I can think of where I am more aware of this concept of impermanence than in the garden. While human states, feelings, conditions, relationships, jobs, you name it, can last for what feels like an eternity at times, most of the plants in our field will be birthed, mature, and die during this one season. Watching them grow and "age" is like watching a video on fast forward. In our field right now, it has been powerful to see how it has transformed over the past week. It has hit a major growth spurt, so to speak. This past Monday through Wednesday, we transplanted all of our field tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, and sweet potatoes into the ground. Drying beans and snap beans were seeded as were Painted Mountain and Oaxacan corn for making cornmeal this fall. Not to forget the remainder of the winter squash and pumpkins that also were planted.
At this same time, our first planting of winter squash was germinating, our potatoes were starting to flower, our first garlic scapes were starting to curl, our first couple of June-bearing strawberries started blushing, we discovered we have three-inch-long Yaya and Cosmic Purple carrots, our first succession of beans started to emerge from the earth, and we picked the first long-awaited sugar snap peas of the season. Nothing ever tastes so sweet as the first crunch of peas eaten in the early summer. We tried a new variety this year, in addition to a couple of others, that was marketed as being an early producer, and the seed catalog did not lie nor did this deceivingly hardy plant disappoint. It flowered a good two weeks before the other varieties, and is putting off fruit at the same time that we harvested peas last season, which is saying a lot considering how much warmer the 2018 season was. We're impressed. Now, our entire pea patch is in bloom, and it's a beautiful sea of white flowers. We don't trellis our peas for a number of reasons, and I have to say how beautiful it is to see this stand of five beds of peas swaying in the winds that we often experience here. It looks like an ocean wave rolling, somewhat mesmerizing for sure.
The field changes from morning to evening, further illustrating this notion of impermanence. We are growing broccoli raab for the first time this year, and over the weekend, I swear that suddenly within a matter of hours it had harvestable florets. With this said, we have broccoli raab this week! Also known as rapini, it is a delicious cruciferous green vegetable that looks like broccoli shoots. The leaves, stalks, and florets are edible. In addition, we also have my favorite, the hakurei turnip, available as well as radishes, kohlrabi, salad greens, pea shoots, spicy greens, bunches of chard, and red butterhead lettuce. I have to say that we are especially enjoying our mixed kale blend - red russian, scarlet, and blue curled scotch - right now. And, there certainly is not an easier side dish than garlic sautéed kale with lemon. This week we also have new beds of gorgeous parsley and sorrel coming in. If you haven't had sorrel, it is an incredible spring herb. It makes a wonderful sauce for fish, or is nice sliced thin and put in salad greens. In the next week or two, we should have our first sugar snap peas, garlic scapes, and carrots available, too.
And with this, we wish each of you a wonderful week ahead! Thank you for your support of our farm and local, organic agriculture! It is our great privilege and honor to be growing food for you.
In gratitude, Melissa & Cale