When I told the owner of Miller Farms, Joe, at his birthday party a few months ago that I wanted to be a farmer, he looked at me with a mix of pity and humor. Apparently grown women don’t run around dreaming of being a farmer when they grow up….ahem…more. The rest of the farm hands laughed too. The grumpy farmer at the farmer’s market asked why I would want to do such a thing? It’s hard work. I have never been afraid of hard work. In fact, I dislike days that there is no work. I have to keep busy. I am not afraid of sunrise, dirt, or feeding people. Only two percent of the population grows all the food for our country. Scary. Not crazy about relying on someone else to grow food for me. Makes me feel kind of helpless. That is why I garden. Be it not very well for the past twenty years but I had a slower learning curve then everyone else and no family to teach me. Just books. And now Debbie.
Debbie started out as one of my students learning herbalism a few years back. She received a grant for a greenhouse and grows a myriad of wonderful herbs as well as vast amounts of food. So, the teacher becomes the student today as I go for my internship and learn which side is up. Everything in her hoop house survived the below zero temperatures. I am intrigued. Her land is a picturesque bounty set against hills and filled with roaming cows and a beautiful old restored house. Her general demeanor is always kind and upbeat. A renaissance woman, a Master Gardener, and a friend. I will learn well in this atmosphere! http://lookingoutfrommybackyard.wordpress.com is her blog. I shamelessly stole these pictures off of her blog!
I reread my posts on Homestead Hysteria and Homestead for Rent from this past week. It made me laugh. It has the exact specifications that I requested! Yet, I sat around the local bar last night with friends and new graduates from my school and did the “what if’s”. What if the wood stove costs too much? I don’t want to clean out the garage, it’s full of so much junk. I do not like packing (I love unpacking though!). What if I can only stay there a year and I put all this farm work into the place? I probably sounded like a whiny first grader. They simply shook their heads, volleyed back reasonable solutions, and said, “What is the risk?” There is no risk, I guess. None whatsoever. It is expensive to move, will use every last penny we have. I was waiting for a big sign, a huge sign. A billboard on the way home or something. (We don’t have billboards out here so that would have been some sign!) But alas, Doug planning how to set up the drip system in the new garden will have to do.
I think I will plant a few rows of wine grapes. I have two Cabernet Sauvignon vines here I can bring with me to start. An Apothecary garden that will consist of beautiful medicinal and culinary herbs. Long rows of three sisters, corn, beans, and squash will grow together and remind us of history. All of the glorious, unique, colorful heirlooms seeds I ordered back in January in my garden dreaming will sprout and take hold, reaching their heads up to the endless sky, looking out to the mountain range, and will provide sustenance for our family and beyond.
I never want to sell wholesale. Just as I run my Apothecary. No wholesale. No faceless item on the shelf. No wondering who made it. I want to hand it to you. Tell you a funny story about it. Throw in a free round of cheese to eat with the fresh tomatoes and kale.
Now I am really getting ahead of myself. I don’t have a goat! And I need to go clean out the garage! Moving day countdown. 34 Days.