Matters of great importance

The idiom definition for "sow the seeds:" "When people sow the seeds, 
they start something that will have a much greater impact in the future." 
A clear metaphor from farming that is frequently used 
to illustrate the beginning of things of great importance.

This is true for us at the farm all the time, but most especially now. 
We recently talked about not seeing fall as the end of summer's garden season 
but rather the beginning of a new garden for spring. 

Indeed this is true. Now, as we enjoy the bountiful harvest, we also re-evaluate 
and analyze what grew successfully, what to do again, what to change, 
what to improvematters of great importance.
This is a time of clean up, regeneration and preparing the farm for a new season.

Our focus right now is on the groundthe soil, 
which is of course the foundation for all we plant. 
As fertile as the farm is, we strive to enrich the soil by paying attention 
to what we plant when and what we can do to assist nature

"Soil amendment is added to help with water retention, permeability, walter infiltration, drainage, aeration and structure. The goal is to provide a better environment for roots," leading of course to growing the best plants we can. 

To do its work, an amendment must be thoroughly mixed into the soil. 
If it is merely buried, its effectiveness is reduced and it will interfere 
with water and air movement and ultimately root growth. 
our rich soil amendment is a "complete soil"
which can be planted directly without any further amending

We use a great soil amendment made locally, North County 420 Blend. 
The video link illustrates how "luxuriously fertile" this mix is with its own "fertilizer charge." 
Amending the soil is not the same thing as mulching. 
A mulch is left on the soil surface. Its purpose is to reduce 
evaporation and runoff and inhibit weed growth. 
Mulches also moderate soil temperature, helping to warm soil temperature 
in the spring and cool them in the summer. 
We use mango mulch which boosts nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium content. 

Sowing seeds is so much more than simply putting the seeds in the ground
We take the time now to clear the beds, amend the soil, plant cover crops to enhance the nutrients even as we are planning what seeds we will be sowing for next spring. 
Matters of great importance.
photo by Jerry James Stone
Executive Chef John Toulze farm to table carrot soup
photo by Steven Krause from
Plats du Jour: the girl & the fig's Journey Through the Seasons in Wine Country

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