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Newsletter 8/4/21

By johnh | August 4, 2021

Photo: Dick Mitchell Greetings Friends and Neighbors, Heavy Rains create muddy conditions in the poorly drained hill pastures, and with another inch on the way we decide it is time to run the Sheep flock back to the well-drained flats of the Home Farm, about three quarters of a mile along the paved Main Road.…

Newsletter 7/28/21

By johnh | July 28, 2021

Photo: Ben Sklar Greetings Friends and Neighbors, Haze arrives in the night, casting the morning hills in reds and oranges. I look out through the rear window as the car speeds along the highway, a two-hour return trip from my father’s birthday dinner in the opposite corner of the state. The haze makes the normally…

Newsletter 7/21/21

By johnh | July 21, 2021

Greetings Friends and Neighbors, Day 1 on the Hill. It is nearly dark when I arrive at the small clearing where I will sleep and sit for three days, on a high Mountain Ridge above the Farm. My clothes are sweat-soaked and muddied from the steep climb – wading through waist-deep Nettles and Ferns, remembering…

Newsletter 7/14/21

By johnh | July 14, 2021

Photo: Dick Mitchell Greetings Friends and Neighbors, Have you noticed the push and pull of North and South Winds this past week? The changing qualities of Light and Air, Sun and Shadow, Heat and Coolness, Wet and Dry? Last Friday morning I mixed and shaped bread doughs in the pre-dawn dark as Rain ran down…

Newsletter 7/7/21

By johnh | July 7, 2021

Photo: John Hadden Greetings Friends and Neighbors, Catbird lands on the porch railing just outside the open screen door, peers inside, and begins to chatter, to speak. A sing-song-soliloquy of non-repeating phrases. A vocal marvel. A sudden, wild interjection. The human conversation around the table on our side of the screen door stops short as…

Newsletter 6/30/21

By johnh | June 30, 2021

Greetings Friends and Neighbors, A week ago, Monday. The cut Grass from two days of hand-mowing – well over a hundred person-hours of labor – lays spread out to dry in the field. The day dawns cloudy, the air heavy and already warm. And then a rain shower arrives. This is not good. The drops…

Newsletter 6/23/21

By johnh | June 23, 2021

Photo: Dick Mitchell Greetings Friends and Neighbors, The final morning of the Scythe School arrives and the forecast is clear enough to mow for Hay. Acre: an old measurement of the land area that a skilled person could mow by hand with a scythe in a day. This etymology arrives as humbling news as we…

Newsletter 6/17/21

By johnh | June 17, 2021

Photo: John Hadden Greetings Friends and Neighbors, Generous Rains arrive in powerful pulses through the night and day, washing over and wetting Hayfields and Hills and Hedgerows – all now heavy in leaf. Weighted down by this film of water, bowing Grasses and Trees offer some of what they shoulder back to the Air, and…

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

By johnh | June 9, 2021

Greetings Friends and Neighbors, Orchard Grasses set out their finest plumes this week – creamy yellow flower heads laden with pollen – which they release as gently drifting clouds upon the slightest rustle of their long stems. Human bodies ask Brook’s cold water to rinse dusty arms and legs and to ease fatigue from heavy…

Newsletter 6/2/21

By johnh | June 2, 2021

Greetings Friends and Neighbors, The Cool and Damp this week slows the growth of recently transplanted Eggplant and Tomatoes in the gardens and slows the pace, blessedly, for us Humans here at the Farm. And yet, the weather forecast delivered on the glowing screen tells of a coming sudden turn towards Summer conditions – many…