50 Shades of Puce
Here it is, the dead of winter, and although I like to pretend otherwise, spring is still a long way off. Lots of people ask me what farmers do in the winter. First let me clarify: there is usually a pretty big difference between what we intend to do and what we actually do in the winter. I have a huge winter project list, ranging from the mandatory (tractor maintenance, building repairs) to the to the whimsical (an outdoor sauna, a fireman's pole from the upper barn to the lower barn). Some of these will actually get done, but these last few weeks I've been staying indoors a lot, trying to keep warm (which would be easier if I set my thermostat above 52 degrees, but I don't). Anyway, I have used this indoor opportunity to replace the impossible to clean linoleum that was on the kitchen floor, and instead have now bright, cheerful, easy to clean TVC tiles. I had planned on a puce and pink combination, but apparently puce isn't a very popular color these days. (It is a brownish purple, in case you were wondering). They didn't have maroon either, or burgundy, so I settled on purple and yellow (see photo). Nice, huh?
We also had some excavation work done. We are having gutters installed on out barn roof and put in an underground storage tank to collect the runoff. Then, we can use the water to irrigate our high tunnels, and since rain water has no minerals in it, we won't have to worry about salt buildup in the protected environment of the tunnels, where it never rains. Also, the water won't run down our driveway and wash it our periodically, as has been the pattern over the last decade. here is a picture of the manhole cover to our new irrigation source.
yes, I know it is an extremely ugly picture, but what else can I post this time of year? No cute baby animals, no growing plants, no happy farm workers going about their daily tasks....
Even though spring is a long way off, my "vacation", as it were, is really almost over. Seeding of onions and early lettuce and spinach starts in two weeks, and with the advent of longer days and warmer temperatures in February, I start to get that feeling of unease and dissatisfaction if I'm not working on some farm project. How much of my to- do list will actually get done? Stay tuned!