‘Oh the possibilities!’ My heart enthusiastically cries this mantra as I flip through the large stack of gorgeously colorful seed catalogs. These folks know what they are doing. Along with pages of delectable photos are detailed descriptions of how tasty and well behaved each variety is. Its no wonder I end up with such a crazy list of seeds each year. How can I be expected to be prudent when it looks like this outside?! I’ll blame my seed hording on the polar vortex this year.
In all seriousness though, I am getting better at noticing my own patterns in addition to the natural flow of the farm. I now expect to be lured in by the glossy catalogs. I equally expect that in July I will pronounce that I am only growing salad mix and kale and nothing else (this usually means I am over extended:)!! This season I will not waste precious money on large experiments without careful planning (e.g. last year ordering thousands of tulip and narcissa bulbs to force in the greenhouse!!) I will not be taking on a long list of new crops to grow (which consequently requires learning how to grow them as the season rolls along) but take a more measured approach and add new things a bit at a time. Caution comes with experience?
Just in case there was danger of straying off course, Andrew gently reminded me (as I gushed about the lovely Floret Flower Farm blog posts about sweet peas) that it doesn’t make sense to add new things if we don’t have a plan to at least make our investment back. So true…so true. Implementing a project or a few new crops each year seems much more responsible (albeit perhaps less adventurous)!
This season we are adding on micro greens as a new crop. We experimented last fall and found they are wildly popular. We’ll start a regular rotation in early spring and hope to have them available each week. I feel more comfortable adding this on to our repertoire because I did a smaller trial first! We also will be cutting a few other crops like cauliflower, hot peppers, celery and salsify (which we’ve not successfully grown out yet so far anyway). Other than this we plan to get better at what we already do well and grow more of those things. Flowers will be in abundance this season–we’ve selected varieties that have proven to grow very well and selected a few new to try out.
For now I can still enjoy dreaming about projects we may take on in the future (fruit trees! currants/gooseberries/strawberries! Garden roses! Perennial flowers!) and just leave them in the future…for now.