We're  Back!!!  9 AM to 1 PM Saturday May 4th!!!

We have RAMPS, Radish, Mesclun, Lettuce, Arugula, Spinach and Beet Greens.  Hope
to see you there!  - Geo

http://www.norwichfarmersmarket.org/
 
 
Simply put, the best tasting popcorn we know.  Our organically  grown Ruby Red Popcorn pops as white as snow, has a wonderfully nutty flavor and harkens back to a day when popcorn wasn't made in a microwave.  We'd certainly never be so bold as to tell people what they can and can't eat, but as we like to say, it's "Too Good for Butter!"  Try it lightly sprinkled with a little coarse salt and see if you agree. In addition to our regular farmers markets and
farmstand, you can find our popcorn year-round at South Royalton Market, Upper Valley Food Co-op and Woodstock Farmer's Market
 
 
All is back to normal here at the farm.  Corn is in the field, and on the farm stand, Geo is on the tractor and Jess is tending to the weeds et. al.  Come visit us, buy some veggies at the farm stand, or stop by the Norwich Farmers Market on Saturdays to see Geo and Sharon.  Jess is handling the Lebanon Farmers Markets
 
 
We are back and ready to go!  We will be at the Norwich Farmers' Market on May 5th with our full compliment of early season greens.  We have a clean bill of health from our soil test and thus no problems with our organic certification.  The farm itself it cleaned up and everything is repaired; so we're ready for this season.  Many, many thanks to hundreds of people that assisted us with clean up efforts, heavy equipment and financial help.  We are pleased to say that we are in a really solid place both financially and spiritually.  Given where we were in September, we are very grateful to be where we are now.  Hope to see you all next Sa
 

Irene

09/05/2011

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Well, it's been a week. 

Like many of our neighbors, we woke up last Monday to a view completely different from the one we'd had 24 hours before.  Irene brought eight feet of water to the Hurricane Flats fields.  A row of hardy baby lettuces is still poking through the soil in one corner of the farm, and through the grey-brown beach of silt there are occasional shocks of red where tomatoes still cling to the vines.  Nearly everything else is crushed or washed away, and what remains intact has been declared unsafe for consumption anyway.

But this pales in comparison to the loss that many of our friends and neighbors- maybe even you- have suffered.  We're devastated by the havoc Irene wreaked on Hurricane Flats...but the barn and house stayed dry, and our families are safe.  We're painfully aware that not everyone fared as well.

In the wake of this disaster, I think you'll agree that the way our community has banded together to help each other has been nothing short of inspiring.  While caked in mud and sweat, we've made new friends and strengthened our bonds with those we loved already.  If the brotherhood and sisterhood of a community can shape its recovery, I have no fear for the future of Royalton.

I want to keep this post short as there's still more work to do, but there are two things I want to call to your attention before I go.  The first is Operation Revive Royalton (www.operationreviveroyalton.com), an organization that was founded by residents in the chaotic first days after the flood and that has coordinated the hundreds of volunteers, tens of thousands of donated dollars and countless gifts of food and supplies that have helped make the initial recovery possible.  If you have any questions about Royalton's response to the flood and how you can help, or if you're looking for important information like drinking water advisories and how to get help from FEMA, this is where you should go.

Second, many of you have inquired about how you can help Hurricane Flats, and we're finally able to give you an answer.  This Thursday, September 8th, we're having our first clean-up day and potluck lunch to begin the process of rebuilding the farm.  We need about 100 volunteers to clear debris, dig out mulch, remove the broken irrigation system and, eventually, start planting a new cover crop.  Volunteers can begin arriving at the farm at 9am, should wear work boots and clothes that can get dirty and bring gloves, bottled water, shovels, buckets and rakes if possible.  Please also bring a lunch dish to share with your fellow volunteers.

If you wish to get involved, please email helphurricaneflats@gmail.com and include your name and how many people you're bringing.

From all of us at Hurricane Flats, thank you for all of your kind words and support over the last week.  I can't tell you how much it means to us. 

With love,
Geo, Sharon, Emma, Cora, Rory, Claire, Mark and the rest of the Hurricane Flats family

 
 
It has definitely been a while since we posted any musings here.  For those of you eager to get updates about the happenings on the farm, we apologize for letting this slip and will endeavor to mend our ways.  At the tail end of this past winter we launched our website and said to ourselves with great confidence that we would make regular updates to our blog.  But, alas, things “go oft awry.”  No matter how straightforward, predictable and manageable something can seem, life has its ways of derailing those plans. 

Growing vegetables in Vermont can sometimes be a frequent reminder of that fact.   And this season so far has definitely thrown its share of curveballs.  A spring of record breaking rainfall has given way to a summer peppered with all manner of extreme weather; record temperatures, sweltering humidity, torrential downpours, and even a few extended dry spells that left us with some very thirsty plants.  Thankfully, one great advantage to growing a wide variety of vegetables is that no matter what Mother Nature offers there is always something that flourishes.  The heavy rains and overcast skies in the earliest parts of the season have yielded bumper crops of broccoli, lettuces and potatoes.  Last weeks sultry heatwave helped to push along the sweet potatoes, melons and corn.  In fact the popcorn is now taller than we have ever seen it! 

With plenty of time left in the growing season we’re certain we’ll get a few more surprises along the way.  But we’re even more certain that it will continue to be another wonderful season of doing what we love.

 
 
    With this many clouds you really have no choice but to search for the silver linings.  As the steel grey of March weighs down on Vermont we find ourselves looking not just forward to lush fields of green but also reflecting warmly back on the woodstove nights of a very white winter. 

    We’ve been starting onions, lettuces, peppers, eggplant and tomatoes in the greenhouse for a few weeks now.  As such, it’s very easy to simply let our minds run ahead to the spring and summer.  First fiddleheads and ramps, then asparagus and spring lettuces, then rhubarb and beet greens, then... well, you can see how quickly you get ahead of yourself.  But for now we’re going to take a moment to enjoy the month we’re in. 

    Though winters on the farm aren’t nearly as hectic as summers, they are no less important.  Winters offer the chance to check things off the huge “when we get some free time” list that piles up in the back of our minds during the summer.  Fixing the tractor, cleaning and fine-tuning implements, ordering supplies, renovating the greenhouses, finally getting around to joining the 21st century with a website… all just the tip of the winter to-do list iceberg.  All in all, it’s been a very productive winter and, at the risk of jinxing ourselves, we feel very well prepared for the coming growing season. 

    But maybe more importantly than all of that is the space the winter gives us to cultivate those things not on display at the farmers market but just as essential to the heart and soul of Hurricane Flats.  Warm winter meals around the stove, sledding on the back hill with the girls, holidays with the extended family, skating on the rink on village green and, of course, winter volleyball with our great friends; just a few of the things that make long summer days in the hot sun that much more bearable.  As we look back on it we cannot help but be thankful to have had the quiet of this very snowy winter to cuddle up with those things that matter so much to us.  Before the snow melts and the grass begins to grow we feel it necessary to take pause and appreciate that.    

    Now, if someone’s selling you months, I wouldn’t recommend buying March in Vermont.  But that’s just it; we don’t have the luxury of buying and selling our time.  Our lot is just to make of our time what we can.  That’s the true lesson of March. 

    Nonetheless, as we trudged our way out to the snow-blanket greenhouses this morning we couldn’t help but notice the clouds just starting to break behind the hills.  I dare say that rays of sunshine peaking from behind the clouds in June won’t taste as sweet.

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