Monday, May 4, 2009

Sunday at the Farm

Ever since I was four, I wanted to be a farmer. Thankfully, my pottery instructor Mike Pappas is a farmer and he takes volunteers! Yesterday marked the beginning of the season, when I and two other volunteers braved the rain to drive out to Lanham, MD to visit Eco Farms and get our hands dirty. Want to come along next weekend?

We get there around 1 pm and start transplanting the Hoja Santa from the greenhouse back outside into its bed. This consists of taking the u-bar through the bed to break up the soil, digging holes and putting these beautiful big plants in the ground. Using the u-bar to till the soil is more fun than I can explain - it must be experienced firsthand. It's a big U-shaped metal tool that you stand on (on the bottom of the U) and out of the bottom of the U, below where you're standing, are prongs that dig into the soil when your weight is on it. Then you lean back, holding onto the top of the U with each hand, and the prongs come up through the soil, tilling it but not redistributing too much of the little critters & nutrients that live in the soil and keep it healthy for the plants.

Then we proceeded to weed out two beds of sage and three of oregano - beautiful big herb plants that managed to weather the winter outside! There isn't a more beautifully fragrant kind of work to be found.

Farm day always ends in Mike's farmhouse, where we eat salad, bread and cheese and olives, and sometimes drink wine. What a day.