Several of us on the farm crew have been a bit under the weather this week. I was not feeling 100% on Friday, rested a lot on the weekend, and then totally over did it on Monday. With a whole lot of rain predicted for the evening, I was racing to plow under old crops and plant a cover crop of fall rye.
We usually try to get our rye seeded by Oct 1st, but mid October is usually ok. This fall has been colder than most and plants are growing slowly. So I figured that it was my last chance to get this soil building crop in the ground.
By the time all the land was worked up and the seed spread, it was almost fully dark. As I lightly tilled the seed into the ground, I was farming by the tractor’s headlights when going forward, and using my phone’s flashlight to see behind me when backing up.
On my last pass over the field I didn’t bother to turn on my phone’s light, and promptly backed into a pile of drip tape and plastic mulch that had just been pulled up from the eggplant and pepper patch. Since the tiller was running at high speed, it took approximately half a second to completely wind up around the tiller’s tines. Arg! I stopped the tiller tines from rotating and drove back to the barn, happy to have seeded all of that rye before a big rain, frustrated with the messed up tiller and feeling quite sick, my head spinning with a bit of a fever coming on.
So now I need to rest up and hope that most of the crew stays healthy too. Sometimes the work flows along and everything seems to happen just in time without much stress, and sometimes it takes some pushing beyond what is healthy or fun as a farmer.
Moments like this are what fuel our winter planning and discussion sessions, where we dissect everything we do and try to come up with better, less stressful ways of doing things, while always aiming to take good care of our land, and of course grow the very best food.
Thanks again for supporting our farm,
David, Jen, Marshall, Dani, Dakota, Erin, Nicola, Rhi, Kim, and Christine