Yesterday, we spent about two hours pulling (sometimes 7 foot) weeds out of the raspberries. In truth, we spend much of the day weeding. So, a few words on weeding will follow in this post!
The first question: what is a weed? The answer: anything that you don’t want in your lovely row of vegetables. So, if a squash plant miraculously travels several hundred feet and plants itself in your bed of peppers, then that squash plant is a weed. More commonly, in the Northeast region, galinsoga, chickweed, and nutgrass infest our fields.
There are multiple ways to weed. Matt uses tractor implements like the star hoe and the flex tine to weed massive amounts of area at a time. Like most machines, these implements aren’t as thorough as human hands; so we do most of our weeding by hand, or with wheel hoes.
One primary use of chemicals on non-organic farms are weed killers. Using chemical weed killers, called herbicides, saves a ton of time. The infamous Roundup, for example, is Monsanto’s herbicide (the monopolizing seed corporation in the US that is responsible for an enormous amount of toxicity and damage to our bodies and environment). Roundup, the most widely used herbicide in the world, has been proven toxic to animals and people, both directly and indirectly contributing to diseases such as cancers and Parkison’s, and has also created a new brand of weed called a “superweed”– a weed resistant to Roundup. Ugh.
Point being: find out where your food comes from! Don’t buy food if you think it might not be organic. Chances are, if it’s not organic, it’s got Roundup or some other herbicide on it.
At the farm, we don’t use herbicides, as it is not an organic or sustainable method of farming. So we do it the good old way: with our hands!
On a lighter note: many “weeds” are edible! Chickweed, for example, is tasty, as is purslain. Dandelion, a common weed, can be brewed for tea and also eaten; it’s great for liver cleansing. Amaranth, another common weed at our farm, is cultivated in many parts of the world for its leaves and stems.
Oh my goodness. Every day involves some incredible cooking project! I really enjoyed a salad that we brought for lunch yesterday. We chopped cucumber, scallions, red cabbage, and green beans, all very very very small. Then we made homemade vegan pesto (basil, olive oil, sunflower seeds, raw garlic, salt, pepper), added a little pesto to some homemade mayonnaise (olive oil, egg yolk, lemon juice), added some water to dilute the mayo-pesto mixture, and used it as salad dressing. YUMMMMMMMMMMMM. If you’re feeling fancy, you can roast your own almonds, chop them up, and put them in for protein and crunch. The salad is this gorgeous BRIGHT purple and green.
Love to you all! Keep your responses coming!