The Starter Farm

Nature creates a killer

It is like a bomb has gone off.  Large craters stand where rows of once plentiful tomatoes existed. I run through the field and large mounds of dirt are piled everywhere.  I look left and I look right, the telltale signs of eaten roots show with wilted plants lining the trenches. Half eaten ripe tomatoes splayed across the path like my now flowing tears hitting the dirt.  “No!” I scream.  How could this happen?  I only left for a few days and now all my... [Read More]

Sunrise

I’m not sure if its an aging thing or perhaps there is this weird switch that flips in your body that changes your sleep patterns to “farm mode” but early wake ups are becoming more and more of my life.  Early to bed mode is kicking in as well but I attribute that to fatigue from increased manual labor on the farm, not and I repeat, not getting older.  I’m starting to love waking up before the first ray of... [Read More]

A Feast Driven Life

The aromas of prime rib with roasted garlic and rosemary permeate the air with just a whiff of baking bread fighting for its space in the nostril.  Freshly plucked oysters from the sea rest in a bowl of ice next to the kitchen sink.  A just smoked trout lays flatly on the cutting board just ripe for shredding next to a butter lettuce salad dotted with California avocado, ruby red sliced onions with a companion of cherry tomatoes.  A light... [Read More]

The $400 Squirrel

At this point in my farm life experience, I should have known better and should have been able to pick up on the signs that clearly were unfolding in front of me. However, I was on a mission.  Tomatoes needed harvesting, weeds needed weeding, irrigation needed mending and I was running out of daylight. I saw her sniffing around the truck a little too long.  I witnessed the crouched crawl under said truck but brushed it off as her usual... [Read More]

“Animals are A-holes” or “How farming is pushing me towards murder”

There’s this type of owl called a screech owl that screams every thirty seconds all night long to his friend across the valley.  He always makes sure to perch himself perfectly outside whatever window is closest to whatever room I am sleeping in.  I’ve tried changing rooms in the middle of the night and somehow he follows me. “Oh owls are so cute people say,” but this little guy is a jerk.   My farm dog Parker randomly digs a... [Read More]

Frost’s wrath

The lone fig hung on the frost-laden tree framed perfectly as the only sign of life that remained.  The first strike of winter had made its attack.  Sad, necessary but way too early for cold’s army to unleash its wrath.  A wave of sadness usually sets in at this point but experience has taught me this is nature and I am only along for the ride so enjoy. This year is a rebuilding year for the winter garden as I... [Read More]

A Prayer for Rooster Meany

First let me say: Nobody wants a rooster.  It sounds so sad.  Being a male in most societies tends to be a positive thing.  You have advantages, better pay, greater advancement, more respect in business and no glass ceiling.  Life is your oyster, yours for the taking. At least that is what many of my female friends tell me.  There are people who like to have a rooster in their flock but they are few out of many.  This lucky... [Read More]

Sunday Morning in Amsterdam

There’s a softness in the morning that permeates the city as if a warm blanket is wrapped around you.  The city is quiet as if the citizens have some unwritten agreement to tip toe around as silently as possible.  Breathing Sunday morning air that seems laced with bergamot happily shocks the system that only hours earlier strolling through the red light district was filled with thick plumbs of marijuana smoke.  I’ve learned that on Mondays the canals are flushed and... [Read More]

I want everyone to have a farm (or at least some version of it).

I can’t help myself.  I want to spread the word that happiness exists right here on Earth for almost anyone. This of course is what goes through my head and in my delusional mind that everybody shares the same likes as me or just has not figured it out yet.  I’ve decided that it is my job to spread the word and educate their ignorance.  I’m talking about the joys of the soil, plants, animal friends and all that goes... [Read More]

Guarding Mt. Peach

The clear warm juice runs down my face and I act surprised as if it were the first time I have bitten into the first peach of the season.  It just tastes like summer and all the critters know exactly when they are ready, eager to begin their assault on these prized fruit.  Of course I net the trees, wrapping them like Christmas presents locked with chain mail paper.  The birds begin to work the perimeter looking for weak spots... [Read More]