Peregrine Farm News Vol. 18 #7, 2/19/21

What’s been going on!

We certainly got lucky with the ice storm that didn’t happen, we are feeling for our friends in Texas and other places who have been taking the brunt of this winter’s fury, that kind of weather is usually more ours to worry about.

We have not really talked much about what it is like to slowly close down and take apart the business we worked so long and hard to build.  For so many years we were focused on building things, improving systems, growing our infrastructure and that of the local food system, learning, learning, learning.  If we had not been that way, we would not have had the successful business we ended up running but over the last two years we have been in the reverse process.

Once we made the decision that the party was over we started to identify what equipment we would no longer need and how to manage the land and buildings so that it would be the least maintenance for us in the long run.  There will still be a lot to maintain as we do have 26 acres, 8 of that are open and have to be mowed, 4 major buildings and 6 outbuildings.  We have begun to sell off some things like the big high tunnels and some greenhouse seeding equipment but will have much more to go after this spring when we take out 5 of the 6 sliding tunnels and really finalize the list of things like fencing and trellising, seeders, row covers and more.  Decisions will need to be made about refrigeration equipment and irrigation pumps but that is all just stuff.

We have talked some in the past about how we personally cleared, with chainsaws, two additional fields to what was already open when we bought the place.  Each one nearly two acres in size and years in the making.  We for sure are not going to let that land or any of the rest return to trees, partly for all the work we put into turning it into productive farm land but also in case anyone wants to farm it in the future.  Over the last two years we have been removing all of the deer fencing and smoothing and seeding down those growing areas to pasture grass to preserve the great soil we had developed and to make it easy to mow once or twice a year.  All of the underground irrigation supply lines are still there if someone wants to use them someday.

In many ways it has been therapeutic, returning the place to how we found it originally but actually better and it has reminded us of how much work we put in in the beginning and how valuable it was in our formation as people.  It is not a sad process but more like letting a caged bird fly free.

Pictures of the week

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The “blueberry” field before we cleared it

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The clearing process

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The finished product

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In production, blueberries in the far back corner

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Everything back in grass except the blueberries

What’s going to be at Market?

Us! Finally the Anemones are cooperating! 

Stay safe and well and we hope to see you all at the market soon!

Alex and Betsy

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