This farm is blessedly quiet this time of year. The tractors are mostly stationary, there are only 2-3 people working on any given day and everyone is happy to keep the days short. We are harvesting our winter crops, cleaning equipment, doing deferred maintenance, grinding chili powders and cleaning up. There is always work to do but the pace has shifted and it creates space for rest, reflection and planning. We are in the midst of hiring our 2021 crew, seeding our second set of lettuces and our first few peppers this week! It seems as if winter is all but gone already. (Is it just me, or does time move faster as we get older?...) Us North Bay farmers are praying for more rain; without it we will have to scale back, ranchers will have to buy hay or sell stock, and many south county farms will have to abandon the 2021 summer season completely. So do a little dance, run through a field naked, howl at the moon, say a prayer or whatever magic you might know to conjure some rain!
Our winter crops are waning as we harvest the last of the cabbages and beets from the field. The hardy greens are starting to stretch upward to make seed and the broccoli is in full flower. We are still at the Marin Civic Center farmer's market on Sundays hustling cabbages, bagged greens, scallions, dry pepper goods and the very first flowers of the season! Not to mention some very exciting new value added products that will hit the table in a few short weeks. More on that soon… *riveting suspense*
The California Small Farms Conference is this coming week, February 22nd to the 28th, and I (Will) am speaking in a workshop titled "Tooling Up Your Farm" this Wednesday the 24th from 3-4:00 PST. I'll discuss how to choose the tools you need for your operation, lessons I've faced in scaling up and making larger equipment investments, and some realities of debt and farm finance. It will be formatted as an informative video followed by a round table discussion and live Q&A with myself and some of the tool folks from Johnnys Selected Seeds. I’d love to see some familiar names attending! The entire conference is virtual and FREE! There are also loads of other interesting sessions on everything from compost to social justice and everything in-between. Register for "Tooling Up Your Farm" here.
Don’t forget to do that thing (anything) to make it rain!
Will & the Blue Leg crew