Intro to Season 3
‘Tis the season. Now less than a week away from our first greenhouse plantings, half of me is powerless over my enthusiasm for our return to the sunshine and fields; the other half looks reluctantly toward the certain exhaustion and turmoil ahead. Have I gotten soft over the winter? Has fatherhood altered my priorities to the extent that it’s taken me out of the game? Am I ready for the physical, mental and emotional toil of the summer? I can’t help but wonder if, collectively, we’ll have what it takes. The execution of a summer CSA is no small undertaking in itself, and given the abundance of major projects we’ve got planned for the summer, I’m thinking it should be… interesting.
The off-season has been interesting as well. We’ve currently got two founding members taking the season off for a short-term sabbatical, and two new members on the team, along with one prospective member who will work with us through the summer. Short- and long-term turnover is built into our structure, and the flexibility of sabbaticals is one of the interesting perks to ownership. However, it will take some work to adjust to the flow of a new crew and new commitments.
We’ve also taken some turns philosophically and economically. Rather than doubling down on vegetables through the three farm markets of years past, we’re dropping down to one (and one additional market run by a non-member); choosing instead to focus on infrastructure development and animal husbandry. We intend to have a new fencing system installed by late-spring, and a host of animals grazing our fields and paddocks in summer. We hope to have constructed a new building on-site by late-summer, furnished with a kitchen and small sleeping area. We’re planning to continue small upgrades to our farming infrastructure and equipment management, while maintaining a similarly sized CSA to last season and establishing perennials. While I have some doubts about our ability to pull this all off, I can admit that I’ve been surprised before. It will likely depend upon the depth of intention that we bring to each task, and our collective willingness to dig deep and trust in ourselves and each other.
What I know for sure is that it will be a brand new season; unlike any we’ve yet seen. My wife Fanni’s forceful presence will return to the fields, after a season of birth and recovery, and by all indications our little Ella Bella will be toddling the land on her own will, providing free entertainment and inconvenience to all. My outside work schedule looks much less intensive than last year, and I’m excited to dig in full-force to our partnership with the land we’ve been blessed to inhabit. As the summer of my 30th year approaches, I feel as ready as ever to make things happen. Which is good, because we’ve got a lot to make happen. It’s good to be back.