Today is the last day of summer as according to my calendar, tomorrow is the first day of autumn. With the bright sunny days and cool nights, it already feels like autumn, and I understand that last night there was frost in some parts of Maine.
But not at our little house in the big woods, where the frost comes late. The annuals are still in bloom, the herbs look suitably perky, and the last of the tomatoes—the wonderful Juliette—are waiting to be picked. I am hoping we get another few weeks before the frost hits our yard.
Nevertheless, the harvest is in full swing in central Maine, and on Sunday, I went to Farmer Kev’s house to pick up vegetables to store for the winter—50 pounds of potatoes and 20 pounds of squash. I also bought 12 pounds of carrots, 8 pounds of Roma tomatoes, and a big bag of green peppers, which we will use fresh until they look as though they might be going, at which point we will freeze them.
As I was chatting with Farmer Kev, he said, “Grab a pumpkin, no charge, so that you can have a fall decoration. And how about some zinnias?” Again, no charge. Yes and yes and thank you so much, Farmer Kev, for the wonderful, fresh organic vegetables sold at an incredibly good price. I can’t believe how lucky I am to have Farmer Kev.
This year, Farmer Kev will be a senior at the University of Maine at Orono.
“What will you do next year?” I asked.
“I don’t know,” Farmer Kev answered. “I want to find some land in the area so that I can have my own farm.”
But good farm land is hard to find, and it is expensive. Still, Farmer Kev didn’t appear to be discouraged, and I think he remains optimistic that eventually he will get land for his own farm. We chatted for a bit, and I said, “Have fun your senior year, but not too much fun. You do need to study a bit, too.”
Farmer Kev just laughed.
Next year, you can bet that I’ll be joining Farmer Kev’s CSA again and will do so for as long as he stays in the area. And may he stay here and farm for many, many years.