As I flash back through the hundreds of pictures that capture just a portion of the work and spirit that has gone into this beautiful piece of land, I feel an incredible sense of accomplishment, awe, and wonder. The vision in my mind is in motion, and with every passing day, every passing project, more detailed pieces of that vision take form and draw me further down the road of this unveiling creation.
This past week I took my "work trade" crew out to lunch at Ikes Quarter's Cafe. This marked the end of the "work" part of the trade on the farm and this was but one way for me to show my great appreciation for this group of people who have helped with countless infrastructure projects and harvest days on the farm over the past seven months. Amazing what a bunch of people can get done in such a short time. Thank you ALL!
Harvest on the farm is not quite over for the year. The last harvest for the Briarpatch Coop was two weeks ago but there are still two more weeks of the Nevada City Farmer's Market , and I'll continue providing kale, chard, and collards for Ikes Cafe through December, but the bulk of it is over, and the remainder is manageable by myself. I relish these cool Fall days when I get to work alone and reflect on the year's unfolding, dreaming of the next one to come and how things will be different.
I put the last of the cover crop in the ground right before our second storm, which feels so good. I've been dreaming of those fields full of green cover crop since at least late August! It's up to the seeds and the rain now.
Following are some "before, during and after" shots of this year's work. Enjoy!
|Poised and ready to make the first pass with the disc. Note the smoke in the background.- slash piles from around the field are still smoldering.|
|Fresh transplants: kale, collards, chard|
|Taken in late October after amending the field and seeding cover crop. Putting it to bed for the Winter.|
|A childhood friends operating the backhoe, digging trenches for the worm bins inside the soon-to-be greenhouse.|
|Vince Booth visits for a week in February to help out with projects. Here is' framing in the recently dug out worm trenches with "pecky cedar"|
|Four foot partitions to support the plywood tops.|
|Wood chips add the finishing touches for the day. Looking good Vince, and my shadow.|
|The greenhouse frame being assembled.|
|Plastic going on, pallet tables in place, sliding front door nearly complete. Just about ready for starts!|
|Here is the newly arrived tractor parked in the future goat penn area.|
|We didn't waste any time and went for the most effective tool right away. Here vince trenches through the very dry and compacted sloping dirt floor.|
|Here we are making long trenches and compacting the bottoms.|
|Once the tenches are dug out we frame them with wood to prepare for pouring concrete. These long concrete rectangles will serve as rails for the tractor bucket to slide along, assisting in cleaning out the goat bedding.|
|Suuzi looks with amazement.|
|I barely got the new cedar siding up on the left before the storm hit that night. The concrete is covered with straw so that it doesn't freeze and lose its structural integrity.|
|To the left are the hay mangers. Ready for goats.|
|They know what to do.|
|Here is one planting block in the upper field. Right now it's covered with about four inches of wood chips and wood debris. This is my Fall planting block.|
|And that's how you do that.|
|This is the lower field, near the creek. In the background is a load of compost, ready to spread and till in.|
|Amended, tilled, and ready to irrigate transplants.|
|Potatoes love sandy soil!|
|Cool season crops - in the summer!|
|Beets, Beets, Beets|
|Fingerling potatoes galore!|
With the changing season so the changing work. Now that the harvest season is winding down I'm looking forward to improvement projects. On the docket for this fall and winter are numerous new sheds, a walk-in refrigerator, and loft in the goat barn, and much more!