Winter has come early

Putting row covers on beds in the hoop house

By Marianthe Bickett (’15)

Putting row covers on beds in the hoop houseWinter has come early to the Antioch Farm. Our first freeze happened Halloween night, taking with it even the tomatoes we'd hoped would last into December in our hoop house. And now everything is under a thick blanket of snow from earlier this week, and temperatures have dipped into the single digits, quite rare for this time of year.

We are all hoping this doesn't indicate a return of the polar vortex from last year's long cold winter. But we've put row cover over all our winter greens, winterized our chicken coops and we will just hope for some temperatures above freezing so we can build beds, mulch pathways and harvest hardy greens from the field. 

We are lucky to have three new student employees from our new class of first years, Amelia La Plante Horne '18, Isabelle Segadelli '18 and Rhianna Guerin '18. Amelia was very excited to get a position on the farm, and is especially curious about soil, soil health, fertilizing watering methods and their effects on vegetable and plant health. 

Ducks frolicking in the ice and snowIsabelle has graciously taken on compost duties, trucking buckets back and forth from our dining halls to the farm in frigid temperatures several times a week. Amelia and Rhianna plan to work on the farm through spring quarter, spending their first co-ops working full-time on the farm, which is very exciting for us.

I followed that same trajectory my first year here, and I benefited greatly from the continuity in learning the farm through every season. Plus having such dedicated and consistent student employees is a great asset to the farm!