And in Farming We are Free

As we become entangled in the movements of early Spring, I find myself encountering a list of tasks that stir deep within my being a sense of deja vu.  It is true, when the days begin to get longer, the air warms, and the rumblings of life emerge and multiply, I am usually in a clear plastic house with a plan, a sharpie, and tiny, beautiful seeds all storing within them the chaos of the Universe and as much possibility.  Deeper than this muscle memory, this learned repetition, is this sense of being through doing, something this time of year surges into my body like electricity.  The idea that the ultimate freedom within this Earthly existence comes from the great responsibility of using your own two hands to create before you the very thing your heart yearns for most.

 As the daylight draws the eggs from the chickens, so too does it draw from within my spirit the desire to create and regenerate.  All winter season we have trudged through the mud, allowed our minds to become as vacant as the barren landscape and finally, after months of repose, we have risen once again into the creative forces of Spring.  The stinging nettles and ephemeral wild flowers are already returning to their nooks and crannies and the Maple blooms are consumed by the hum of a busy hive.  Our first beds have been prepped and the nuances learned from another season past have been calculated back into the big plans for 2014.  While there remains a chill in the air, night time temperatures in the 20's and below, you can never hold back Spring.

And so it will go, just as it has gone before, the momentum of another Spring will sweep us off our feet and we will be carried away into the hurried shuffle through yet another growing season with it's challenges and defeats.  At one point in June it will feel like the whole world is on our shoulders and the tasks at hand are too numerous to count and too much to handle.  Before I can blink my eyes I will find myself in November, closing up shop, ready and willing to watch the landscape fall once again into dreams so that I may put down my hoe and embody the serene, peaceful pace of Winter.  Only to find myself in March, filled with the anxious sparks of potential, more eager than ever to go through it all again; the joys and the pains.  Knowing that I only truly feel alive when the work of my body and mind nourish the community I love and the ecosystem that I farm.

We applied our first BD Prep 500 to the farm recently and I have to say first of all, what an incredible first moment to share with your farm in the early Spring.  While the mass produced fertilizers and "OMRI approved" amendments may bring their bling and short sighted victories to plants in distress, there is something to be said for practices that are holistic, extremely low impact, low cost, and so completely full of intention.  The simple act of stirring this mixture for an hour before walking every inch of your farm breathes within it the life, the imagination, and the most literal and basic physical expression of intention you have the power to convey.  With every step, seeing each and every piece of your farm just as it begins to open up to new life, you nurture a kinship that exists as much outside of you in the Earthly realm as it does within you.  Your farm, your garden, your life, is a mirror of the effort you put into, the intention and love you share with it, and there is nothing more fruitful on this planet than a piece of land whose biology is as diverse as a forest and whose growth has been guided by the creative forces of love.

As I sit impatiently in the purgatory of the end of Winter and the beginning of Spring, I am at my most receptive to the undeniable yearnings I have for the work we do here at Sun Dog Farm.  I may get tired, I may make mistakes, but I was called to this piece of land and I have had no greater teacher.  The closer I come to nature, the better I become.  The more responsibly I use my days to create, preserve, harvest, and nurture, the more my spirit is set free.