Late Summer at the Farm


Last night at dusk, the farmers who hay our field came to take away their second cutting from the field. It was a bit of a Marx brothers moment as a truckload of bottles had just arrived for us. The driver had taken his 48 foot tractor trailer past our farm, way down our dead end road where he found himself very, very stuck. Jim went down the road to try and help him turn around. About two hours later, he and the poor truck driver returned victorious. The driver was amazingly cheerful, even philosophical, noting that, “These things happen.”

However resigned he was to one mishap, he was not ready for another. He halted his mammoth truck in the middle of the road in front of the farm blocking all traffic including the many farm vehicles on our field and all the neighbors coming home from work. As we set to work unloading boxes and relaying them to our barn, it was quite a circus of confused vehicles. Jeison, former staffer Yesenia’s charming cousin from Costa Rica, showed up and in his ever gregarious way explained to each arriving vehicle that there was simply no where to go. Big dogs and little dogs from all over the hilltop appeared to watch as all able handed people unloaded tens of thousands of bottles. The truth is that the above photo of the big hay rolls peaking through the Joe Pye Weed gives an impression of a quiet evening that wasn’t very quiet.

None the less, by early this morning all the hay rolls were gone, Jim had repaired the damage done down the road by the tractor trailer truck, a year’s worth of bottles were tucked in our barn, and the fog that sits in the valley on fall mornings was there to remind us that even though its been a glorious stretch of sunshine, cold is coming.


This cold, even to the point of frost is just what the grapes need to sweeten them a bit.


but exactly what we don’t want for the red shiso which is very sensitive to frost. So we begin our dance of waiting as long as possible to harvest the red shiso so as to have the deepest maroon colored crop possible while not waiting too long so as to have no crop at all.

And of course we are grateful for every frost free day that gives us Flowers like this spectacular late season Daylily called Ripe Grapes


or the Montbretia which we fell in love with in Ireland and now grow here.

We are need time to harvest the bumper crops of peaches, plums, pears, and apples of this marvelous fruit year.


And time to mellow out under the fruit trees with the dogs, who as ever, have their priorities in order.

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