Leapfrogging Cells: Week #4, Wed. July 1, 2020

 In CSA Newsletter
Leapfrogging Cells
Recently my mother asked me to try and explain how and why farming can be so stressful this time of year. For years she’s heard me say it’s a crazy time of year, but she wanted more details.

Here’s my attempt at explaining it as simply as possible:

Weeds being at their peak on the weeks surrounding the solstice + the variability of crops as they respond to the weather + managing getting the job done often working around intense, severe weather events = a crazy time.

What this essentially means is that, like any job, there are certain tasks that are more pressing than others to complete. However, the weather impacts our ability to do so.

I’ve had scallions that need to be transplanted for over a week, but we can’t get dry enough ground conditions with a large enough crew when we need it.

Mike has needed to get the winter squash cultivated, but those fields on Pioneer road, keep getting hammered with rain. 2 inches Friday. 2 inches so far today. So even though that task is TOP on the list of priorities, it has to keep waiting. Can’t drive a tractor is wet, wet fields.

Or take Monday. The plan was to pick the whole strawberry patch. However, severe storm cells keep popping up. So the huge crew I had on staff kept getting pulled into the shed to do busy work while we waited out lightening. So there went that plan of getting all the berries picked on Monday.

So the stress of this time of year is that there is so much demand for weed control and the a huge time suck required for picking crops that don’t hold well in the field… and our inability to complete these tasks when the weather doesn’t behave.

Sometimes I feel like I’m in this massive real life video game.  Myself and our crew are a massive team that all work together to reach the end of the level. Each level is a farm week with different crops, different weather, different orders, different field needs. My job is to coordinate this team, to keep it moving and constantly working toward this end goal, with no time wasted.

Plans are made and scrapped. Made and scrapped.  We pivot. We adjust. We leapfrog. Somehow we get it all done, with the goal of achieving it with less and less stress as each year passes.

Cheers and enjoy your veggies!
Farmer Cassie