11. March 2016 · Comments Off on And We’re Still Beginning · Categories: Farm Thoughts, season update

When last we checked in we were trying to get the garlic in. We did get one 80 foot bed in the other day before the rains returned. We figure thats about 500 bulbs. We’ll need more, but its a start. We managed it without the Troy Bilt tiller, which remains “in the shop” due to errors in judgement by the mechanic (Jim).

Eight flats of walla walla onions have sprouted green shoots in the green house germination chamber.

Jim's First Selfie

Jim’s First Selfie

One of you (a very orderly minded mathematical modeler for a computer hardware company) asked why we don’t do our maintenance at the end of the season. The simple answer is that we clearly don’t possess such orderly minds, but the question had us both puzzling it for the last few weeks. We came up with a few answer/excuses: 1) We desperately want to hibernate at the end of the season, 2) In our climate, we often don’t know that the season has ended until the next one is about to begin, and 3) Jim works to deadlines.

Even more deeply it got us to musing about how different minds work differently. Jim has always been interested in understanding systems and believes he has a certain facility for managing them. For years he would perk up when a computer person would say they were a “systems analyst,” and then be crestfallen when he learned the narrow meaning of their job title.

But recently he has come up with a title for what he does. He likes to say he is a “systems artisan” when he is farming, and a “systems poet” when he is writing about. Jim has concluded that his facility is an intuitive approach to systems. He holds all the elements in his head and finds himself inspired to act at particular moments. He maintains equipment when he “feels” it is the proper moment. Is he alway right? Clearly not, but in the highly fluid natural world of farming he would argue that intuition serves him as well as a mathematical equation, but perhaps he just suffers from “math envy.”

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