Change comes in the fog, bearing flowers and cats.
Only last week I shared the story of morning farmwalks with McFarmer, of how we stroll through the aisles, taking in every spot of growth and change. We'd recently discovered the bloom of our Bells of Ireland, and it seems everyday since then has brought a new arrival to our Moon Dog fields.
Change—funny beast—can sneak up on you like a wallop to the head, or accumulate little by little with a shift here and there, until a great transformation has occurred making all the bits of time and work seem effortless, predetermined.
And Spring is nothing if not change, loads and loads of it. Although Spring doesn't officially evolve into summer until June 20th, it won't be too much longer until folks around here begin the “hot-enough-for-ya?” dialogues that will continue until October. But for now, the everyday appearances of new guests, legged and leaved, clearly mark this farm as dressed fully in Spring.
Flowers planted weeks and weeks ago have suddenly begun to burst into petal, and their unfolding of new color acts is the siren call to insects we haven't seen since last year when the grass was high and our foreheads covered in sweat.
I'd nearly forgotten how lifting it is to look out in the fields and see dots, sprays and wide stripes of pinks, golds and violets woven in with the rows and rows of green. Apart from the good it does my soul, flowers planted alongside edible crops encourage beneficial insects to take up real estate as well. We're always glad to welcome those changes.
More change has been evident in the mornings.
Many days this Spring we've arrived to a farm of fog. The truck drives down our road with barely 15 feet of visibility, and once in the gates, the vegetables, ponds and orchard are completely shrouded. The cool gray coats the horizon with a thick haze that has us feeling like characters in a blustery mystery.
Some days we've even been lucky enough to have the fog last until noon, allowing for blessedly cool hours in which to do our weeding, orchard work, and much else.
The progress made in the orchard is a perfect example of change that occurs from the build-up of efforts over time. By no means are we done revitalizing the old orchard, but McFarmer has been steadily improving it, tree by tree, acre by acre, for over a year, and the changes he's made in 2014 make me so proud of him.
His goal of completing the irrigation to a minimum of 5 rows (which means clearing dead and unwanted trees, digging over 30 three-foot deep holes, and stringing wire, tape and more for over a mile) is over halfway done, all before the year is halfway over!
His hours of heading out down the trees with a post-hole digger, chainsaw and coils of wire in the bed of the truck have resulted in great changes, and boy, does it feel good to see water successfully delivered to over 300 trees as a result. He deserves a nap.
To top it all this news of change off, we've got new livestock!
To be clear, they're of the less-demanding breed of livestock--barncats—but they serve the farm well. One of them, Sabrina, is a monster, a large brown tabby who favors sleeping in the seat of the tractor. She's shy, but not when it comes to catching mice.
The other three came from a nearby farmer who'd found himself overrun with felines. Only one has decided we're trustworthy enough for the occasional scratch between the ears.
Alex named her Allie, thinking her pale blonde hair and blue eyes favored a sweet daughter of one of our friends at market.
And for a fella who worried I'd be too sentimental to have barncats, this is quite the welcome change indeed.