Monday, November 29, 2010

November 2010 Crop Mob (Stick and Stone) - Recap & Photos!

 No shade, no shine, 
No butterflies, no bees,

No fruits, no flowers, 
No leaves, no birds - 

-Thomas Hood, "No!"

The Ithaca Crop Mob has come to the end of its first growing season. With the first (and second... and third...) snow having touched ground, and with only three more weeks of the Steamboat Landing Ithaca Farmers Market remaining, farmers are counting down the last days of the season and saying goodbye (or just "see you soon") to their employees and interns. Some farmers are headed to off-farm jobs for the winter in order to make ends meet; others are finishing bringing in root crops for winter markets and CSAs before the ground freezes and the cold sets in. Thanksgiving brought with it a bitter wind that left many only too happy to spend the harvest holiday at the dinner table and fireplace, giving thanks for the bounty of the season. But just a week and a half earlier, the Ithaca Crop Mob was blessed with a final taste of autumn.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

October 2010 Crop Mob (West Haven Farm)- Recap & Photos!

 In seed time learn, in harvest teach, in winter enjoy.
-William Blake
Autumn's bright leaves and brisk winds have returned to the Finger Lakes. The first freeze struck this month, wiping out the very end of the tomatoes and basil (if blight hadn't gotten there first), beans, eggplants, squash, and more. But October was hardly a slow fade into winter- seventy degree days followed bitter cold sleet in a roller-coaster pattern that left plants as weary as farmers were wary. Now is the time to put the land to rest for the winter- even if, as in West Haven's case, the farmers won't get a break! 

This month, the Crop Mob visited West Haven Farm at Ecovillage in Ithaca, NY, ready to embark on the fall cleaning and complete the cycle of the growing season. We began by pulling up the black plastic mulch- weed controller and soil warmer- from the squash beds, exposing irrigation tubes for later removal.