Thursday, April 2, 2015

Spring Means Ducklings

You know it is spring when the ducklings arrive, ever the fast growers.

Enjoying Some Well Earned Sunshine

Meeting Their Protector
Chicks and Pullets Under the Heat Lamp in the Barn
The bees were out if not quite fully awake yet.

Mud Season

Rain Barrel
The Bark of a Very Old Sugar Maple

New WWOOFers  from Italy and Switzerland

The sap is still flowing.
The First Crocus

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

5 signs that Spring is here. . .

After 17 snow storms this winter, most felt Spring was never coming.  Here are 5 signs that Spring is near at Barberry Hill Farm:

1.  We're getting stuck in the mud with every step. . .hence much shoveling.

2.  The chickens have finally started laying again and we're collecting eggs by the bucket fulls.

3.  The sap buckets are overflowing with sap from the maple trees and keep us running from bucket to bucket.

4.   The heirloom tomato seedlings that have been growing in the house have reached the point they  need to move to the greenhouses.

5.  Eggs are hatching and chicks are peeping.

March - comes in like lion - goes out like a lamb (or so they say).

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Update from the Farm: Snow.

For our CSA/Farm Share members, the update is simple.  Snow.

The fields that have and will be teeming with all kinds of vegetables and flowers now rest safely under an insulating white winter quilt.

Sugar maples awaiting warm days and cold nights

And while some animals work around the snow...

...others fully embrace it.

Inside the chicken coop

After a long day of shoveling

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Seeds and Seed Money

This is the time of year...
...for farmers (and the rest of us) to think about seeds.

"Winter in the garden is the season of speculation, a time when the snow on the ground is an empty canvas that invites the idle planting and replanting of countless hypothetical gardens between now and spring thaw.  A season of speculation in the Wall Street sense too, for now is when large wagers of gardening time and space are made on the basis of mere scraps of information." - Michael Pollan, Second Nature
"The future of the human race will depend on combining the cleverness of science with the wisdom of nature." - Charles Linbergh 
"Seventeen thousand different varieties of wheat have been produced, many of them the result of centuries of cultivation in a specific ecosystem with the best seeds saved each year and planted the next   The variation in plant varieties is related to the variation in cultures from one bioregion to another." Bill Duesing, Living on the Earth
The darkest month of the winter is over.  A window of sun starts us thinking about warmer days.  And in many farmhouses right now, people are planning the acquisition of seeds.

We live in a world that now has the unparalleled capacity to produce vast amounts of mediocre products.  Food production has already been that way for the last thirty years or so.

But small farms provide alternative.  Many would rather pay more for real food than pay more for doctors (or restaurants).

Those who write their checks for their summer CSA/Farm Share this time of year understand that they literally are providing seed money.  And when farmers have a bit more resources earlier, they can buy a better selection for the season to come.

Heirloom and Local Seeds Need Less and Give More

Painfully separating the seeds from a flower which is almost impossible to buy in the quantity required for a farm.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Barberry Hill Farm Share, CSA, 2015, Now Accepting Enrollment

We don't need a reminder in the calendar to tell us when to start the processes for the 2015 CSA.  This time of year we start daydreaming of fresh fruits and vegetables, and the seed catalogs just start arriving. So:
  • We are now accepting enrollment in the Farm Share program for the 2015 season! Download the form by clicking here.