HARROWING WOOD PRAIRIE POTATO GROUND FOR THE FIRST TIME. We began harrowing this week on the exact same date as we started harrowing last Spring.
Here, looking over her shoulder is Caleb’s sister Amy, driving our 1967 92-horsepower Oliver 1850 Diesel tractor. Caleb and Justin completely rebuilt this electronic-free work horse American tractor eight or nine years ago and it’s still in prime condition.
This day was sunny but chilly and in the fifties. Amy is pulling a 19-foot-wide IH (International Harvester) 4500 Vibra Shank harrow which combs through the soil and kills developing weeds. This is one of the Home Farm fields where we’ll plant this year’s crop of Organic Maine Certified Seed Potatoes. www.woodprairie.organic
She is driving southward. Just this side of the thick Spruce trees ahead, ten days earlier, there remained the remnants of deep wind-deposited snow. Every year snow is slow to disappear because of that tree shade.
Thirty-two years ago we developed our Four-Year Crop Rotation. What this boils down to is that we last planted Organic Potatoes in this field FOUR years ago. In the intervening years these same Home Farm fields have been in soil-improving carbon-capturing sod.
Just home from college, last week Amy completed the second year of her five-year program at Husson University in Bangor. She is working towards earning a Masters Degree in Occupational Therapy. Again, she’ll be helping us plant this year’s crop of Organic Maine Certified Seed Potatoes. At age 20, she has never missed planting or harvest on our family farm. Caleb, Megan & Jim