Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Thinking Towards Spring
Despite the weekly snows that keep never quite melt out on the farm, I can tell that spring is coming. The birds have it in their voices. I can see the cottonwood and silver maple buds swelling on the branches. I read it in the lines of wild geese at sunset, silhouetted against the sky.
I see it heralded in the mail, as well: seed catalogues, dairy and sheep supply catalogues, poultry catalogues.
I hear bits of talk among friends of seed starting, garden planning, CSA marketing. People ask, "Now, when does Farmer's Market start up again?" At Pinwheel, we start planting as soon as snow is off the ground, hopefully in early March. Looking out across white lawns and fields, it seems impossible. But each afternoon brings unexpected melting, even if the thermometer still reads below freezing.
I get a call from one of my fellow shepherds, confirming my flock size so she can make arrangements with the shearer. Sheep Shearing Day is set for March 19--only a little more than a month away! People I meet in the grocery store ask about it more and more. I get emails from people offering to come help.
Shearing heralds lambing: The beginning of April should bring lambs on the ground, as well as Farmer's Market Opening Day. People start enquiring about helping with lambing, volunteering in the garden, interning for the season.
The Planting Season is preceded by the Planning Season. To-do lists, lists of seeds to order, garden plans, talking with potential volunteers, planning, planning, planning.
Posted by Natalya at 10:20 PM