Things on our little 8-acre farm are winding down for the season. We started slow this past year, exploring what was there already – learning what practices we wanted to use and how much work we could feasibly put in. Late fall is a time of cleaning up, planting shallots, adding to the compost, and, my favorite part, planning for the next season. It is time to clean the barn, organize the garage, drive the snow stakes onto the edges of the driveway and stack the wood. I’d be lying if I didn’t tell you that we are secretly hoping most of our leaves blow on their own to the edges of the property. Because there are a lot of leaves. And by a lot I mean thousands.
This first year we discovered that there is a world of potential we have barely tapped into. We have always wanted to become more self-sufficient and food concious. This year proved to us that with proper planning (and hard work) we can do that. Building a cold room or root cellar is top on our list for the winter months. We will be so sad when our little stock of home-grown potatos runs out. We see the potential of having enough for the entire winter next year. Our garden is still holding carrots, kale and swiss chard. We are grateful for that.
8 acres, while small in farming terms, is overwhelming for the non-farmer. Wondering how to best use it, not only for our family, but to help others. What to grow, how to get enough compost to practice no dig gardening. To buy polytunnels or not to buy. To grow flowers or just veggies? Winter is great for thinking, figuring things out. Learning from our favorite Youtube gardners. We love You Can’t Eat the Grass, Flower Hill Farm, PepperHarrow Farm, and of course, Fruition Seeds, who we are so glad to be right down the road from. So much inspiration and with the steep learning curve we have ahead of us, we are grateful for all the tutorials.
So, as this week wraps up, you will find us cutting and hanging herbs, pulling flowers and vines, cutting back perennials and picking up deadfall apples. Cross your fingers for lots of wind…we need help with those leaves!