Field Trip and Musings

Next time I’m in Norwood, visiting the Fork, I am going to try and stop by Lazy Heron Farm.  How dreamy.

Lazy Heron Farm


What does it mean to live lightly on the land?

I do not like work, for work’s sake. I think manicured landscapes in suburban cul-de-sacs tend toward the ego,  and therefore away from honoring the whole, allowing the essence to grow up. Mostly the ornamentals provide little nourishment for biodiversity.

On the other hand, when everything becomes so overgrown that it goes to seed, nothing can thrive because everyone vies for the available resources. The strong (resilient, invasive, adaptive, common) out compete the sensitive, tender/rare/beautiful/endangered/historic for sun or water or pollinators.

When we do not work at all in the space we call home, the place grows over until there is no space carved out for a lovely life for ourselves.

The farm sits in the interface between the natural world and the human expression.  The farm is how the human works in relationship with the surrounding ecosystem, and the farm gives back.  The farm creates habitat for wildlife, and provides home for humans, too.

This truth brings up back to our own homes and habits, wherever we live.

When I ignore the laundry, or paperwork, my place becomes a mess, populated by those unruly ‘inhabitants’ (biological or otherwise) allowed to run ragged over that which would provide succor, nourishment, and peace to the soul.  A pile of dirty clothes wreaks havoc on my sense of peace, and place.

So, although I do love turning to a forest or field for food, and fear the drudgery of endless, backbreaking hoeing or weeding, I see the need for balance.  One must use energy to continually carve out a place of order so that which brings calm and structure can still breathe, drink, photosynthesize, create food, regenerate and propagate the rare, beautiful and health-giving ones.


I long for a farm, and I long to be.

A human, Be-ing.







Our Bodies, Our Earth

Microbes make healthy soil, and a healthy gut.

Pesticides and herbicides kill soil organisms — and the life in us.

Dehydration makes for unhealthy soil and plants, and also our body systems.

Bacteria, fungi, protists, animals and plants all eat and recycle each other., working together to create a diverse and balanced ecosystem; and our bodies require diversity and balance to stay in health , as do our ecosystems.

Given a choice, animals will choose the healthier food.

Insects and diseases will go for unhealthy plants, especially those rich in sugar; and disease in our bodies thrives in sugary environments, too.

Manage your farm like your body: for health.  Don’t chase bugs. Establish wellness – in your soil and body.

Predators attack the sickness – they do a service, and indicate sickness. The symptoms can be distracting.  Addressing symptoms covers root causes., and nutritional deficiencies.

This is the nature of addiction.  After a while, when we avoid unhealthy food, we do not even desire to eat it.  Our urge for sugar disappears.  The biome of our bodies does not crave sugar.  We are well, like healthy plants , and less susceptible to disease.

Take that one more step.  Our spirits are the same. Feed the spirit wholesome stories and faith-filled experiences.  This soul nutrition serves our minds , making them more drawn to healthy thoughts and more able to make choices which serve our body and ultimately, our world.  Wellness is all-encompassing, and at least as big as this Earth and our nearby Heavens. .





Nanny called them sprouts; now they’re micro-greens

Micro-greens are all the rage.  But there is some sound science involved. Anti-inflammatory eating matters more in an age of high stress, and for women in middle-age, this is a vital component of our well-being.

Legumes have diamine oxidase. (DAO) Diamine oxidase helps form the plant from seed and is present from day three to day ten. A plant under stress (in the dark, for example, produces even more.)

Grinding sprouts up makes the DAO more bioavailable.

Nanny also touted lecithin.  That’s back in style too.  Along with organ meats. DAO is in the kidneys.

Eat up!


Vermin-free Kale

So far so good.

With netting to keep caterpillars out, and fencing for rabbits and deer, we  might just be able to eat our garden ourselves this year. Rich soil comes with many friends. We use no inputs except those we harvest from the compost pile, the chicken coop, and the woods. I direct seeded yesterday because, true to form, we did indeed get one last frost, very late, but by date.

The last of the nettles came in today. They flower any minute now and are already way past the early stage. But they still cook up and don’t seem to hurt.I’ve read a lot about them and am not convinced only ‘small is possible’.  Just that small is lovely, rich and very rewarding for well-being.

Let the watering and weeding begin!


It takes a hunter to make a hunter, they say.

Well, it takes a farmer to make a farmer, too.

Sure, you can learn to farm or hunt on your own. But the culture of hunting and farming, the deep ethics, the habits of walking the land, your five senses engaged – those come from a person in reverence with the natural world, and needing to eat.  The details show up over years of knowing a place, and being in relationship. Farmers and hunters see the patterns, notice the nature of the place and how the land changes.

A few years after the fire, we had beauty berry.  It had never grown there before.  And when the neighbor clear cut, the water changed it’s pattern across the land. To me, a good farmer is more than a business person using land to make a living.  That can be done without relationship.  A farmer is a person whose land provides a living, both sustenance and a way of life.

Farm School engages people of all ages through immersion on real farms, doing real work.  Experience is the very best teacher. Work and play intermingle on the farm. We return, again and again, to the joy.

My sister and I rode our horses across wide open spaces, singing made up songs, swimming bareback in streams, and spending more hours mucking than we ever spent on their backs.  We grew up on the land and stayed.

She was born later, and did less weeding and bean picking. She wasn’t there when we put chickens and spinach in the freezer. But she was in our family, and she still grew up to become an adult farmer.

Her farm at Big Table inspires me. It calls me on when I fear I will always rent and never have a farm of my own. She did it. Her cows are mob grazing, her land getting restored.  Go Clare!  Big Table Farm




Who’s browner, softer, more supple, warmer, more luscious to touch?

I’m not sure if it’s the dog or the soil today.