It's finally here: Week 1.
Growing vegetables is something I love. There is a rhythm and a pattern that makes it peaceful. There's the seed order, when you let your imagination run away with you as you pour through the Johnny's Select Seeds catalog and circle every other vegetable, telling yourself you will make the time to experiment with all these beautiful new varieties. In the long, sometimes mundane winter, this little connection with the seasons ahead gives you an energy and a sense of your limits that is often a bit misleading when it comes time to actually plant. Still, that excitement is joyful at the time.
Next comes time to start your seeds indoors. It is a quiet, thoughtful task. A good time to chat if you have someone working alongside you, or else get lost in your head, mulling things over as you carefully count out the seeds to go into each cell.
There is this little time between starting the seeds and setting them out – where you are nurturing the tender seedlings. Things never feel quite real at this time. It is hard to picture the trays of seeds in front of you filling the gardens and feeding so many people. And it is too early to begin most tasks out in the gardens. It feels like it will never be time to break earth and start planting.
Then all of a sudden – it is.
All of a sudden it's time for everything all at once to be happening! I always end up feeling behind during this time. This year in particular, that was actually true. We had a long, wet Spring. It made it impossible for me to plant on my earliest planting dates. I'm not going to lie – I probably panicked a bit. Just for a moment, though. Then I set to work. Since as early as the ground could be worked, we have been out there, day in and day out, working on getting the vegetables to our CSA members on our start date. There have been set-backs – besides the late start, we had a visitor in the form a groundhog. A groundhog who didn't much care that we had people counting on us for their vegetables. It took a week of him sampling our greens beds to take care of that problem. As a result, there are no snow peas or kale for our first week like we had hoped. Our little friend nipped the tops off our entire crop, a few each day, requiring the whole thing to be replanted.
Here we are, though. Week 1! This is the biggest year for our CSA that we have had. There are so many people who have put their faith in us to provide them with fresh vegetables for the next 18 weeks. It is intimidating, but rewarding. We are at the part where we share our labors of the Spring with people. Where the work we do arrives on someones plate to nourish them. It is an exciting time for us! We will be adding links to recipes as we go along. We also invite our CSA members to share their own for us to pass along to others.