As the rhythm of farming reflects the turning of the season, we are reaching the peak of abundance and activity, just as the sun is reaching the peak of its appearance in the sky, as it sheds light on the plants and animals that drink from its golden nourishment. As our Creator orchestrates this creation in perfect wisdom and harmony, the natural world moves in accordance to His will. As a farmer, surrender is the wisest choice, as you are but an instrument in His hands to steward the land and support the birthing process; a note in the song and a step in the dance. Mercy shines down in rays of sun and drops of rain and rises up from the soil in unfurling leaves and abundant fruit. The days are long and the work seems endless, however as the tide peaks in the summer, if we enjoy the ride, we can slide into the shores of fall and winter, as God knows what we need and provides a time in each turning of the season to offer benefits.
First Tomato Sighting of the Season!
With a support team of 3 full time farm apprentices and other volunteer support under the leadership of Jesse Amin Mills, the fields are humming with gratitude as the soil receives numerous seeds and is given the oppoturnity to birth healthy plants and endless possibilty for nourishment, as each seed planted continues the cycle of expansion and generosity.
Jesse in Garlic Patch
Gentle rain is falling upon them as they work today. Much weeding was done this week, as the weeds grow as rapidly as the plants, and attempts to mulch all that has been planted is well underway. We use grass clipping from the areas surrounding the field and barns. Many organic farmers have transitioned to the plastic mulch that is so popular now, and used widely in this area. As Jesse puts it, "I am not willing to plastic wrap the earth." It takes a little more effort and has been a learning curve for us, but alternative methods of mulching are still being implemented and explored.
Summer Squash Plants Rising
This weeks share will include another generous serving of snow peas! The beets are ready to pull and more turnips have plumped up to fill the empty spaces again. As the heat is arriving, we are going to clear one last bed of spinach and that may be the last of the spring spinach. As the spring greens fade into the heat of summer, the squash plants are quickly on the rise. Costata Romanesca and Raven zucchini and Yellow Crookneck summer squash are rapidly growing. The tomato plants are also on the rise and full of flowers. Along with the beans, cucumbers, melons, eggplant, peppers and basil... It all unfolds rather quickly under the summer sun and we'll update you as the summer plants unfold their fruits.
New Members of the Farm Community
Jamil Bastress, shepherd to the flock of tunis sheep, took the lead in lambing this spring. He was greeted with healthy triplets April 11th at 7:30 am for a gentle and unassisted birth, by the grace and mercy of Allah. His patience and care, along with his deep love of prayer and reliance on God, was reflected deeply through the lambing process this spring. Twenty five lambs are currently on pasture and have begun to graze alongside their moms. In the coming weeks, the ewes will be brought in for routine care and hoof trimming and allow the lambs to ween from mom's milk to green pasture.
Reservations for fall lamb have already begun to arrive. We encourage you to complete a reservation for fall lamb or contact us with any questions early this season, as we have a limited offering on a first come, first serve basis.
RESERVE A FALL LAMB
The children at the Olive Branch School supported the addition of new members to the Farm of Peace community. The children selected a fun breed of feathered friends to raise as a school project. Top Hat Laying Hens with feathered head dresses were chosen by the children and raised from day old chicks. The children also cleared the brush from an existing coop, repaired the fence, installed a new gate, cleaned the coop and repaired a window, all with the support of their teacher Cindy Pratt.
Now that school has let out for the summer, the chickens are being enthusiastically cared for under the leadership of Kyle. They are a welcome addition to the farm, a great step in responsibility for the children and a fun new stop on the farm tour.