The other day I had that experience of a late winter evening when you look up and realize that it’s still light, at around 6:15 in the evening. And you are VERY happy about it! One of those little indicators that spring is coming, that the winter can’t hold on forever! Alas the same is true of this, the last delivery of winter shares for the 2021/2022 season. And though we are not happy to leave our members without our farm food for the next few weeks we are happy to think about the new season approaching and the prospect of warm soil, sprouting seeds and fresh spring vegetables.
This time of year on the farm feels like a precipice; we are still standing on the top but know that soon enough we’re going to be speeding ahead with all the frenzy of work that is the spring on a vegetable farm. But first, we get to enjoy the lengthening days, the completion of winter admin work and the peaceful work of seeding in the greenhouse. There’s lots to look forward to but we still have time!
Hopefully our members have enjoyed this winter’s veggie fare, the product of the sun and rain of last year. It’s always supremely satisfying to pull dense winter veggies from their winter storage spaces and bring them to our members. We have a lot of respect for these veggies that have the capacity to hold on to their flavour, texture and nutrients long after being pulled from the field. And for the human stewards whose work went in to cultivating these varieties that know how to exist throughout a long winter to keep us fed. And we realize that eating seasonally, even in winter, is an act of environmental and social responsibility. In a world where humans seek so often to override natural systems, eating in a way that respects the earth’s natural boundaries and systems is a simple and incredibly satisfying way to try to work towards something better. So thank you for doing it! And hopefully it was tasty and satisfying while you did.
And now we are on to 2022! This year’s vegetables have already begun with tiny seedlings growing right now in our heated greenhouse for early spring shares. It’s always lovely (and more than a little nerve-wracking) to be seeding tender greens in a winter greenhouse, often while the wind is howling outside. We’ll be beginning to plant these seedlings in the ground next week!
The upcoming season will see some changes on the farm. We are no longer bringing shares up to Port Elgin, which was our third delivery spot for the last many years. We so appreciate our members who have supported us there for so long but realize that the third delivery trip off the farm was contributing to more burn out and less time for work for ourselves and our co-farmers. With less time off farm, we can devote more energy to growing food. And we can serve more members in our continuing locations of Hanover and Guelph. We are also excited to be able to grow more food for The Conscious Kitchen, a super cool local business run by young entrepreneurs providing home delivery of incredibly yummy vegan fare (https://www.theconsciousfarmkitchen.com//). There are a few other cool collaborations we are also exploring and think that this change will help energize and inspire us here at the farm.
We are also excited to be bringing our food to the Guelph Farmers Market location with new and interesting prospects being dreamt up for this space by the folks at 10Carden in Guelph. No, we are not selling at the farmers market there. Rather, 10C, which took over management of the market last year, is opening up the space on other days to more local food businesses in order to maximize and energize this great space. We’ll keep you posted about some of the ideas coming forward for bringing more local food access to the farmers market location and in the meantime we are happy to have a secure and accessible spot to bring our food to Guelph.
Hopefully this spring will bring some fresh energy and optimism to us all. We hope you are all well and look forward to seeing you again when the crocuses are (hopefully) blooming!1