In the last 20 years I cannot remember a spring like this. We have had wet Aprils or Mays or even June’s. But I can’t remember a season when all three months were wet. It is what it is, some farmers are skipping whole plantings because the crop they grow like potatoes requires more time to grow than what is left of the growing season. Farming is a unique industry and when you miss the planting window, you have to wait till next year.
If you were thinking about taking a drive through the river valley’s right now, you might want to wait to wash your car until you get back. I took one of the back roads to town and the road was caked in mud. It was like driving over several of those road “turtles”. You couldn’t miss them if you tried 🙁. But right now, it is go time and if a farmer gets a weather window to plant or cut grass for silage, they are taking it. Which means mud on equipment from the fields will be deposited on the roads. There are more than a few farmers this spring that have chained up their equipment to pull it out of the field. Ironically, mud and chains are more synonymous with the Fall harvest when the rainy season starts early in September. I am praying for a long, extended summer!
But back to this spring, we are getting close to being fully planted on our farm. We have settled for “good enough” with our seedbeds and hope the vegetables can work it out with the weather to come. As a small farmer, we use smaller equipment, which works to our advantage during these seasons. Having a lighter footprint is kinder to the soil, but also allows us to get in sooner. We also plant our crops by hand.
Larger Farms have to use the big “toys” to farm as much ground as they do, which means I can get into my fields sooner because of our scale. But we are also feeding thousands of people and they are feeding hundreds of thousands of people. Our communities need all types of farms growing all types of foods.
Our country is also blessed because we have a lot of growing regions and when one region is off anohter is on. Take last year, the Barley and wheat farmers in Eastern WA had poor yields because of the hot summer, this year they are ecstatic because of the plentiful rain fall.
Which brings to another point, we need to conserve as much farmland as possible everywhere possible to make sure we can feed ourselves as a nation and the best way to conserve farmland is to support organic farmers like you are doing with each Box of Good delivery you get. Profit is the simplest way to encourage a farmer to keep farming. We farm because of you, our network of local farms keeps farming because of you.
We are thankful for you.