day in the life

Dear Friends,

I will take this lazy Sunday opportunity to tell you more about life as a farmer, for those of you who secretly dream of open fields and the hum of wind in the grass and the scent of fresh earth.

Every morning, I get up at 6:15. The farm crew (the farm manager Matt, the CSA manager Greg, and the four apprentices) meet at the “beefer shed” (I have no idea why it’s called that). On days when we harvest, we pull on rainboots and rain pants, load our wrists with rubber bands, and head out to the fields in our two trucks, called Gomez and The Bing. We spend however long it takes, usually at least an hour, harvesting vegetables for our restaurants, CSA, farmer’s market, and farm stand. We drive the vegetables back to the beefer shed, and then we each assume a task– washing, organizing, salad spinning, or going back to the fields to weed or plant.

Often, some major task is accomplished before lunch– planting an entire field of squash, for example, or transplanting tomatoes, or weeding a particular area.  Soon, other tasks will be added to the mix– driving vegetables up to our farm stand at the Drumlin Farm entrance, for instance. The only break in activity occurs to pee in the woods (I have already given you detailed info on this subject), to coat ourselves in thick 50 SPF sunscreen, or to stick our open mouths under the orange igloo that we fill with pure, freezing water and keep on The Bing.

Lunch is at 12:15ish. We break for an hour and fifteen minutes, usually collapsing in the service barn where we keep our tractor and water wheel and other odds and ends. At this point, we often make fun of each others’ dirt unibrows, mustaches, and beards. Jokes are a bit feeble though, as pointing and laughing involves moving muscles that have been turned to compost by the sun.

The afternoons are spent weeding, mostly, and doing other various tasks like planting. Typically, you want to plant things at sunset so that you don’t shock the plant with too much sun during the transfer. So we often plant in the afternoon. At 5:15, we toss all of our tools in the trucks and bounce over the gravel road to the main grounds of Drumlin Farm. We usually stand around and chat for several minutes, shocked that the end of the day has arrived, and then we limp to our cars and head home to chirping frogs and refrigerators filled with glorious food.

Here is a picture of a field of ours (I think it’s filled with bean plants):

If you have questions about the farm, about planting, about vegetables, or about being covered in dirt, please ask them!

I hope you all had a lovely weekend. Tomorrow, back to the fields…….

With Love,


P.S. Lunch today: cooked mustard greens in olive oil, mixed with cooked millet, tomato sauce, basil, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and a little tahini for a creamy texture. Adventurous souls could add some capers.


One thought on “day in the life

  1. I love your photos and recipes to augment your descriptions of the work on the
    farm. I feel like I can imagine the smells, the buzzzzing of the insects, the butterflies, the heat, the dirt, the sheer fatigue, and the complete gratitude at the end of the day. Thank you!!!

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