Spring Will Spring. Promise
I got this picture today from Tara. It’s a shot of the greens’ tunnels in the field across the lane from the house where she and Matt and little Alice live. I love the way it looks, covered as it is with deep snow and a thick coating of ice. Inside those plastic-sheathed tunnels greens can grow in weather not ordinarily suited for them. There aren’t any greens in the tunnels now, but the structures extend the growing season at either end of it.
This is just one aspect of what Matt and Tara do on the farm. A little farther down the lane live the milk cows and beef cattle. In another field is a movable pen for poultry, surrounded I believe with an electric fence to convince the foxes and coyotes to search elsewhere for their supper. In an enclosure nestled among the gnarled trees of the old apple orchard are the pigs. Matt plans to slaughter another beef steer this month, as the meat from the last one he killed is running low and so it’s time. He will do this on a cold morning in the same field where the cattle live, calmly and efficiently with little time for the beast to feel fear. And then the carcass will be hauled away to be butchered.
Even in the deep of February, the farm requires a lot of work. Nothing like the frenzy to come in a month or two, but the livestock need care even as Matt plans and prepares for the coming spring.
And make no mistake about it. Spring will come, greening the fields, the woods, and the boggy swampland behind the old barn near our house. Every year it sneaks up with a few false starts, and then: Wow!
copyright © Mary Goodbody