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December 2, 2015
A frosty fall morning

It is hard to believe that another season has gone by. October and November were a whirlwind of harvesting and getting the fields ready for winter. We had some help from my niece and her friends for half of the dry bean harvest. The winter squash came in slowly this year, but eventually made their way inside. The garlic was planted and mulched…on time this year! More fields were planted in cover crop and the drip irrigation lines were pulled out, rolled up and put away.

The garlic is planted, mulched and growing

Even if it is not technically winter yet, it feels like winter. We had a few nights in the mid-20s before the last delivery. After Thanksgiving, it got even colder, with our lowest night around 16 degrees. Brrr…You’d think by now I would be used to the growing season ending this way. It has been a good, though challenging growing season. In the spirit of Thanksgiving, here are some things I am thankful for this year:

Water  This has been one of the driest years ever. I am so thankful for our well and that it functioned perfectly all season.

Washing the late season carrots

Carrots and Crop Diversity  It is funny how things go. One year the winter squash is better than ever and the carrots not so good. The next year, vice versa. (In case you weren’t sure, the carrots were the good ones this year.) Having a lot of crops to choose from means if one or two don’t do well, you still have plenty of other crops that do.

The harvest crew

Good Help  As much as I like to do everything myself, I need help. I am thankful for the help I had this year. I appreciate the young women who worked with me this year, one for the whole season and one for a couple months, sticking it out through hot days (cold ones, too!) and repetitious tasks. I also appreciate my niece and her friends, who came several times to help out at some peak moments of need. And, of course, I am thankful for our family and friends, who support and encourage us and help out when they come for visits. I will mention Steven’s dad in particular, for his weekly visits to prune trees, mow grass, till fields, spread compost and wind drip tape, among other things.

Loaded Pasta Sauce
Loaded Pasta Sauce

New ventures  With Beth and her new business, Can-Do Real Food, Bethel Springs Farm fruits and vegetables are available in delicious new ways! It is exciting to have the extra and not so perfect fruits and vegetable come to the table, instead of the compost pile. I am looking forward to working on this project this winter, evaluating how the first round went and seeing what we can do to make it better next year.

Customers  I have the best customers ever. Some of you are new this year, and some have been around the whole time I have tried my  hand at growing food. With so many good farms in the area, I am thankful that you have chosen Bethel Springs Farm as one of your sources for local, organic fruits and vegetables.

Yikes! Like last year, I ran out of room before I could get Steven on the list. Maybe next year…

The frost makes things look even more beautiful
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