For just the briefest moment, as I boarded the train this week, I dreaded going to the farm. Last week, we started weeding and spent a couple of hours each evening as the air was starting to cool, squatting, yanking, and, on occasion cursing. We didn’t get very far (probably too much cursing). So the thought of all the weeds that have to be pulled this week (including those that have grown back in the same places we pulled them last week) was a little disheartening.
I once asked a more skilled gardener than myself if something growing among the peonies was a weed or not? “Anything growing in your garden that you don’t want is a weed.”
But, I quickly decided to re-frame my thoughts. Perhaps there can be some beauty in weeds. Right? I mean, at some point in the history of the world, they served some purpose, so they can’t be all that bad.
So I vow to take a moment with each pluck this weekend and appreciate the beauty of the weed.
This weed is fond of growing up among the hollyhocks. I worked really hard last summer pulling up its ancestors, so there were many fewer of these this year.
I like to call these thistles “devil weed”. They just look evil.
This weed reminds me of a quill pen. There were not that many of them last year, so I didn’t bother with them. Big mistake. This year they are EVERYWHERE. When the wind catches those fronds, it must scatter seeds for yards. Genius.
This is a new comer. It was almost pretty enough to keep.
Another newcomer, but I can tell just by looking that he’s bad news.
THE TRAIN REPORT (each week I’ll also give you a glimpse on what our train ride was like):
Train was full and on time.
I sat across the aisle from a mom and a child who were just plain annoying. (Please tell me that you, too, have come across those people who annoy you for no real reason. This will make me feel like less of a bad person for having those thoughts.)
Sunday morning started with a thunderstorm. The ominous clouds and deafening claps immediately made me happy. Rain meant it was far too muddy for any more work in the flower garden. I had had enough, and I don’t believe in telling you otherwise. When something is idyllic and romantic, you know by now that I’m the first to paint a pretty picture, but farm life is just not always picture perfect.
Also not quite picture perfect (yet) is the new manufacturing facility for Beekman 1802 soap. It’s truly amazing how quickly demand for the soap outgrew the little barn annex facility (thank you!).
We spent Sunday not resting, but cleaning out the large new space that is right in the center of the village of Sharon Springs. It’s almost 2,000 sq feet. The soaps (and new lotions we are developing) will be manufactured in the back, and in the front, our soap-maker extraordinaire, Deb MacGillicuddy, will open her own mercantile. If you ever find yourself in our neck of the woods, please stop by and say ‘hi’.
The new factory was once a fancy department store that originally opened in 1910.
THE TRAIN REPORT:
25 minutes late
Coming from the fresh country air made stepping into the stagnant air on the train that much worse today. I almost had to ask the conductor to spray something. That’s how bad it was! We had nice company from our friend Ross Wasserman, and I hurriedly finished this blog entry so I could finish reading Michael Pollan’s latest book, In Defense of Food. It’s eye opening.