Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Week of September 6th 2011

From the farmers…

I have often thought of September as the best time to be a farmer. A majority of the work is behind you, the constant pressure to plant and irrigate begins to subside, and the pleasant weather and cooler temps make for ideal working conditions…Most years anyways.
Our 1st place Red Onions at The Columbia County Fair

The week of sunshine after Hurricane Irene helped to dry things out, and begins the healing from all of the flooding caused by this historic weather event.

Just as we started to think about things other than flooding, these past 3-4 days of heavy rains have put us right back into crisis mode. Unfortunately, whatever mode we are in, there is nothing we can do about the weather…other than hope and pray that the current trends change

We spend most of our time trying to anticipate the problems we may have, and managing things accordingly.

With our superb hard working crew, our years of experience, and a beautiful farm that is full of prime soils and level fields, we often feel “in control.”
This feeling of control has been lost—with the dramatic flooding and continuing rain, I feel like the hardest part of all of this is letting go of the idea that we can control our destiny.
Based on the most recent radar images, we will receive much more rain in the coming 48 hours, and then have a respite in the form of 5 days with no forecasted rain. We can only hope that our dangerously full creek can drain just enough in the coming 12 hours before the next rain event swells it again. We will not know how bad things will be until later in the week.

Despite all of this hardship and strife, we are still happy to say the shares should remain full for the foreseeable future, and we have our fingers crossed that our fall crops which are predominately planted on our highest fields will make it through all of these rains, and be there for us in October and beyond.

Chris Leading AnneMae on Ice Cream at the Columbia County Fair
  Despite our own hardships, we know growers all around us who have lost everything—with no hope of any crops for the remainder of the year. Through no fault of their own, these competent and professional farmers have lost their entire years’ worth of work, and there is nothing that can be done about.
It is hard to imagine how that would feel, and our thoughts are with them.
We hope to be able to donate to these farms anything that we have in surplus, and will be reaching out to them in the coming days and weeks to offer our assistance.
In a good year, with plenty of sunshine and occasional rains, farming can seem to be an idyllic profession. We have often counted ourselves as lucky to have found a profession that we love so much, and gives us an opportunity to make a living off the land.
In the span of the last 4-5 weeks, this idyllic picture has been disturbed, and but not lost completely. We hope that these current challenges teach us things that will help us in the future (now we really know how high our creek can get!), and as the saying goes, that which does not kill you makes you stronger.
Thank you for all of your support, Chris

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