Blog

July In the Fields | A Note From Scott

Quail Hill Farm
July 16, 2019

By Scott Chaskey

When we began farming here, in the Spring of 1990, we “plowed” 4 acres (with a hand-pushed rototiller) along Deep Lane. Over the years we added a field here, another field south of Town Lane beyond the nursery, another field north of Town Lane, all land donated by one Deborah Light, prime agricultural soil.

In 2009 the nursery returned some leased land to us and we prepared 3 acres for planting—once affectionately referred to as “Hurricane Hill” we renamed these fields Birch Hill, in honor of two fine specimen trees that grow in the southern portion of Block 1. Block 1? Where is that?

For years I have watched farm members (and apprentices) wander about the 14 acres of Birch Hill: “Where is the lettuce? You’ve moved the tomatoes? I can’t find the cilantro!”

We have always posted a map, though of course the map fades, the numbers can be difficult to decipher…And because the rotation of crops is a core principle of organic farming the location of the vegetables (from your point of view) is a game of chance.

Do not despair! Farm member extraordinaire Jonathon Rose has designed a practical and aesthetic solution: look for his handsome metal numbers (atop a rebar upright) at the edge of each planting block on Birch Hill. The position of the map has changed—you will read it just as you enter the gate to Birch Hill…& if the numbers do not coordinate with the actual plantings ready for harvest…call your Congress-person!

We still encourage you to wander and muse while in pursuit of your food…though we have improved the sign-posts that point to potatoes: Here!…Peppers: Here! Arugula & Mizuna: Here!

Thank you to Jon, Sign-Master, and to Max Ryan, and to Claes Brondal for our new gate to the Valley. “A” is for Agriculture…thank you for your community support.

Yours,

Scott

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