Monday, August 14, 2017

Down on the Farm

One year ago today I left my long time home in a large northern city and relocated to North Carolina.  We had never been here before, and did not know what to expect. What I definitely did not expect was to be employed on a farm.  I had no experience farming, am extremely small, and at times can get away with ordering off the senior menu.  There was absolutely no reason to think that I would be applying for such a job let alone anyone hiring me.  

When I started working in early March, all of our crops were in the greenhouse and I spent my time tending and harvesting those plants. Lots of lettuce, kale, beets and collards.  During this time I also worked a few afternoons in the farm store. The farm also raises beef; however, the beef is not located where the vegetable crops are so I have little to do with that.

But creatures are no strangers to the farm. One day at the store, a customer asked if we have animals on the farm and I responded that there were plenty - the raccoon that was eating the cantaloupe, the deer that was eating the green bean, the worms eating the corn, etc.

My favorite creature showed up one day last week and it was the first time I ever encountered one of these guys that were not squished in the road.  Take a look at the short video below!

The other thing I get to do on the farm is plant, which involves using this contraption that is technically called a high wheel cultivator (something my sister told me, who is another unlikely person you would find on a farm, but that is another story).  Basically, after the soil is tilled, the cultivator makes a nice furrow for planting seeds. Before adding the seeds, any fertilizer being used is spread in the furrow and you go over that again with the cultivator to mix the fertilizer and the soil.  Planting the seeds involves a bit more than just dropping in the seed and covering it with soil. Of course seeds have to be placed at certain depths and widths apart but you also need to create furrows along side where the seeds are planted for water run off.   

One of the people who comes to the farm often is Mr. C, a gentleman who lives near by. Mr. C has been farming his whole life and shares his knowledge as well as his equipment (I am fairly sure this is his cultivator).  He also grows great tomatoes and shared with us the only way to water them....his way, which means using this attachment on the end of the hose.  But I don't have a photo of that contraption at the moment.  

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