Apparently, the deer LOVE radicchio!
Last week’s near miss reminded me of a near miss several years ago. It was before my farming days (yes, there were “before farming days”).I was working my way through college on a golf course (insert witty comment here). I saw the storm clouds approaching and anticipated the afternoon halt of golf course work. Being that I commuted to work on a motorcycle, I decided that I had better things to do than hang out in the shop all afternoon sharpening tools or whatever it was that grounds crew workers did when it rained so I told my boss I thought I would try to beat the storm, hopped on my bike and whisked away. I drove home as fast as that little bike would carry me (which I’m positive was always under the speed limit). Now, I lived in an old house converted into an apartment then, and underneath my living room was an old garage with a dirt floor that no one used so the landlord let me store my little bike in there. I was pulling into said garage when it hit. Hail. I’m not talking the cute little peanut hail that might be considered normal. I’m talking HAIL! I dashed inside and watched with relief (that I had decided to beat the storm and that I had won that race by milliseconds) as the little pebbles grew into baseballs and then into softballs. A near miss. I’ve never seen anything like it before or since. My car, which was parked at my roommate’s job halfway across town at the time, bore the multitude of dents for years after and never failed to spark conversation.
The crazy thing is that I never even thought about the local farmers then. How it must have devastated their crops and livelihoods. All these years later I wonder how they managed? So after all this complaining about the weather, I again have to acknowledge our near miss of a hail storm last week. So besides the weather, this is what we call the “June lull” here on Tumbling Shoals Farm. It is the time to take a breath after the intensity of the spring season, catch up on all quite length “to do” lists, but also the time where I’m a little thin on diversity of produce. Especially this year since my carrots are all so late. We’ve still got plenty of cooking greens (get them while they last! They go away as soon as the potatoes and onions are dug) and plenty of new and exciting squash and cucumbers, but only a few beets, all while we await the okra and green beans and onions that arrive soon. And of course I haven’t forgotten your tomatoes and peppers-we’re looking at mid July for tomatoes (a little late this year) and August for colored peppers.