Well the first week of CSA is upon us, and we are just coming out of a miserable weekend of weather. Just when we thought we had turned a corner and were heading fast into summer, Mother Nature brought us a cold, rainy, and extremely windy couple of days. Over the past couple of days, we have sat helpless as our young and fragile tomato, pepper, eggplant, melon, squash, okra, and tomatillo crops got hammered by wind and rain and brought down to temperatures much colder than they preferred. Moments like this are the worst part of farming. There is so much out of your control, and yet it is your responsibility to be prepared and ready for all of those out of control moments. It forces you to make decisions you really wish you did not have to face. Once the rain finally slowed, we watched the wind rip through those already damaged plants. Torn between putting row covers over our tomatoes to help keep them warm and trellising them to abate some of the wind damage, we eventually chose trellising after witnessing the wind snap the stems a couple of our tomato stems. Then we held our breaths as the temperatures dipped last night and came all to close to the deathly frost zone.
There is the logical part of me that knows that our crops will be fine. A couple of calm and warm sunny days should help them regain their vigor and pop right back. We can readily replace extremely damaged plants with our extra transplants. But there is also an emotional part of me that grows attached to our plants. My mom jokes that they are like my little children. Maybe she is not so wrong. Walking around today to assess the damage, I felt a stab of pain in my gut at every snapped stem. Every torn leaf felt unfair and undeserved.
I racked my brain for a lesson. As we celebrated the bountiful spring harvest, had we grown too complacent? Did I not look far enough into the forecast before transplanting out many of our summer crops? But alas, with the available information, I realized that I would not have done anything differently. Once again, Mother Nature was just keeping us on our toes. Always reminding us who is in control here. Perhaps even laughing at our measly attempts to assert some control over her domain.
Lucky for us, preparing for the first week of CSA should serve as the perfect distraction and by the time our members get here, Mother Nature will have hopefully shown her power once again and the rainy wind damage will have faded away into the sun!