Christmas or April

It is hard to believe that it is this late in April. Records show this is the third snowiest April in Minnesota history.

It is hard to believe that it is this late in April and that this picture was just earlier this week. Records show this is the third snowiest April in Minnesota history.

So as the season gets later and I know the rush and amount of work that is in front of us, I find myself occasionally questioning whether or not the CSA is the right direction for our family. I am quickly reminded by the boys that it is the right choice for us.

This week as we visited about the weather forecast for the weekend, I mentioned to them that I thought we could plant our pallet gardens as the soil should dry out quick enough for us to plant some of our cold season crops.

Keith responded, “I can’t wait. One of my favorite things about last year’s garden was pulling up a carrot and eating it right away.”

Sam reminded me with our conversation the other night on our way home, and he said he thought we should get a tractor for our CSA. I said, I agree, but then we would need another shed to store it in. Sam said that we should build one. I asked him where he thought we would get the money to do all of this, and he responded, “Well we need to sell more shares in the CSA mom.” I said, “Way to go Sam. I think you are starting to understand business, how you earn money and agriculture.”

Again, my boys reassured me this is the right direction, and we, like everyone are excited for warmer weather.

So although the weather has been challenging with the snow. We are most appreciative of the moisture. The drought monitor map shows how the moisture levels in Minnesota have changed just over the last few weeks. We are very thankful for the improvement.

There is excitement in the air as we get set to plant. All of our plants in our garden begin as a seed. Have you ever wondered how a seed grows. Here is a great link to see how a seed grows and also see the many decisions go into purchasing the right seed.

As we look at the garden so many choices abound. I have always been fascinated by the different varieties of seeds including heirloom and traditional varieties. I wanted to share with you a farmer’s visit to Seed Savers in northern Iowa.  I have always wanted to journey south to see this facility. And am sure a family trip is on the horizon.

Even with the weather feeling like winter instead of spring. We are ready to plant. Keith is holding a bag of everyone's favorite last year...the sugar snap peas.

Even with the weather feeling like winter instead of spring earlier this week, we are ready to plant. Keith is holding a bag of everyone’s favorite crop last year…the sugar snap peas.

On Friday, the boys and I found rhubarb peaking out of the ground. A sure sign of Spring. We were just a tad excited about this!

On Friday, the boys and I found rhubarb peeking out of the ground. A sure sign of Spring. We were just a tad excited about this!

With the temps in the 70s the past few days, and the strong south wind, our pallet gardens were ready to be planted. So the boys helped me prepare them. They totally enjoyed getting their feet dirty doing so

With the temps in the 70s the past few days, and the strong south wind, our pallet gardens were ready to be planted. So the boys helped me prepare them. They totally enjoyed getting their feet dirty doing so.

At last, some planting of Black Seeded Simpson, spinach, red oak leaf lettuce, Nantes half long  carrots and some carrots from Healthy Kids Day, Cherry Belle radishes and French Dressing radishes.

At last, some planting of Black Seeded Simpson lettuce, spinach, Red Oak Leaf lettuce, Nantes half long carrots and some carrots from Healthy Kids Day, Cherry Belle radishes and French Dressing radishes.

So the rows may not be perfectly straight. But even with the wind blowing at about 20 mph from the south straight at us, the boys were excited to get dirty and to get some planting done. I was amazed at what a great discussion we had about the seed size, planting depth, soil moisture, and seed to soil compaction.

To see two very energetic boys, be patient in their planting and gentle, firm and precise covering up the seed made all my efforts worth it. Then to see them recognize the value of a short shower on the seed was also truly amazing.

So as planting season, ramps up – the last few days’ events reinforced the value and excitement of time spent together as a family getting our hands dirty and growing food. It is priceless, rewarding and worth the investment especially as it relates to the values instilled in our family.

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