Last Week’s Box: gloriously cold greens and warm yellows, orange and reds! by Maria Grazia —
I tend to work a lot in the busy Full Belly office which is one of the farm’s most important information and communication Hubs, providing its own frame of reference in terms of News From the Farm. This is where the daily work of selling crops, providing service to our CSA members, taking care of bills and invoices, managing payroll, and keeping up with the comings and goings of our 90-member farm crew are just a few of the activities on the list. We have definitely moved on from the days when all of the phone extensions on the farm picked up into one (or maybe there were two…) party line and we had heated discussions around whether or not the farm should be accepting credit card payments.
There might be a tinge of regret that everything in the office is so much more complicated now, with a computer network to maintain despite our unstable internet; radios blasting from all corners of the farm all day long; and a phone system with 6 lines that are sometimes all lit up at once. The unsung heroes in the farm’s office are doing work that is familiar to the world’s office workers and very much part of the backbone of any highly-functioning business.
Full Belly Office Team: (left to right) Becky, Cheryl, Ben, Judith, Shannon and Hector with the office mascot Baboo (front)!
But the weekly answer to the query — what’s the news from the farm? — generally means a check-in around farm fields rather than a peek into the office. And not only can a lot can change in in the farm’s fields in one week, but each crew is going to have a very different perspective on the week’s activities. Cleaner and cooler air this week gave everyone a sense of the coming Fall season, rejuvenating spirits and calming a few frayed nerves. Oak trees are dropping their acorns. Black and English walnuts are falling from the trees and the English walnut harvest is right around the corner. Some crews are picking up winter squash — there’s a lot of it! Others are weeding the carrots that have emerged out of their beds of carefully tended soil.
Some people have their minds on the day’s harvest and weeding projects, while others are trying to figure out which ground should be prepped for the first tomato and melon plantings to go in next spring. We are planting cover crops, mowing orchards and planting garlic. Most of our Fall and Winter crops like beets and cabbage have been planted.
One of our interns, Kyota, is about to fly back to Japan to rejoin his family’s chicken farm. He will be sorely missed. He has a YouTube channel that you can find by searching for Farmer Kyota. He has spent many of his weeks caring for the farm’s animals and his videos are a lot of fun!
Blessings on your meals.
— Judith Redmond
Field of greens