As many of you know that follow my blog, I have set as a goal for 2011, to harvest over 1,000 lbs of produce in the calendar year. Let me tell you, even though I am over 750 lbs for the year so far, I am experiencing goal anxiety! Those of you who know me well, can testify that once I have set a goal for myself, I need to follow through on that goal, or in the end answer to my own internal critic.
There are many reasons for my anxiety,
I am leaving for an extended vacation from the farm to Cancun, Mexico for over a week.
Note: I have a very capable person harvesting and weighing for me whilst on vacation.
The August heat is again, frying the summer crops.
Once again, the watermelon and melons are ripening too fast and the yields waaay below the poundage they should be. I may just give up on growing melons.
The tomato plants are showing signs of fatigue.
Summer vacation is almost over, with reality getting in the way of farming, that is school and work.
My own inexperience as to know how to plant a second season of growing in southern California, one that will produce before the end of the year.
And to add to that thought, if I make the 1,000 lbs goal, do I miserly not harvest at the end of the year in order to boost the January 2012 production numbers?!?!
But: the BIG question is; what if I do not make the 1,000 lbs goal?
The farm will still survive, and what will have been learned and/or benefited from the experience?
Through this blog, I have helped to hopefully inspire, educate and encourage other would-be farmers to also follow in the path of growing their own food in order to hopefully achieve some form of self-reliance, sustainability and feeling of accomplishment of the most powerful feeling, the ability to grow your own food. There is something quite powerful about growing your own food. You are ultimately responsible for putting fresh produce on your table, pesticide free, with virtually no carbon footprint. It is 50 feet to your local produce store, your own backyard. Fluctuating produce prices are not a concern.
Whatever food pyramid, diet plan or program you subscribe to, almost all prescribe to the notion of eating more fruits and vegetables in your daily diet in order to maintain good health, ward off chronic diseases, increase vitality and promote a healthy lifestyle.
3)GMO and pesticides
Having worked earlier in my career as a genetic engineer, specifically with plants such as wine grapes, tomatoes and brassicas, I have come about full circle and am proud to be an organic gardener, choosing open-pollinated heirloom varieties to grow and nurture.
4) Friends and family
Directly benefit from my weekly pawning off of excess produce, especially in the summer months when the production really gets out of hand.
For those of you who haven’t delved into the art of canning and preserving, now is the time. There is nothing more fulfilling then taking stock of a full pantry of canned goods from the summers bounty.
Hopefully, I make my goal at the end of the year, it will satisfy my inner critic, my need to have a self-imposed goal met.
But if it does not happen, I know I can look back at the benefits I have listed above, and reflect on what an incredible success it has been, and what I have learned and hopefully others have also learned or have inspired upon my journey.