I like our town.
When we first moved here, It was essentially throwing a dart at a map. “Well, what’s in between Maine and Vermont? Oh, ok. How about… this place. They have a book store.”
We’re now coming up on our first year here and I’ve found out a little more about the place. Home brewers, biodynamic farms, large scale composters, and more raw milk than I ever thought possible. We accidentally landed in an oasis of agriculture. You’d think that the Granite State wouldn’t have all that much going on for agriculture, but I think that actually is the reason for the diversity. All the thousand-acre plots of corn and soy are out in the Midwest where you don’t have to worry about hitting a boulder every ten feet. Without the pressure of subsidized farming, small farmers are free to create pretty diverse systems.
One of these small farms is Rosaly’s Farmstand in Sharon.
They’re a small biodynamic farm that mostly deals in flours and fruits. First, let me say a few things about its aesthetic value…
Jaw dropping. They’ve got a southwest seat on the slope of Temple mountain, which makes it ideal for both growing and gawking. The most interesting part of the whole property is an ancient brick farmhouse that overlooks the fields. Huge windows and flagstone courtyards make me swoon. It’s still used as a house, though, so we respectfully kept our distance.
The best thing about it, though, is the “you pick” policy that seems to apply to everything on the property. Since it’s mostly fruits and flowers, and those both do a whole lot better on the plant than in storage, they only pick a few bouquets and bushels for those who don’t have the time to wander through the rows. If you do, though, you’re doubly rewarded by the experience and the couple of dollars per pound you save on the price. With this opportunity in mind, we decided that this was going to be a fresh fruit kind of winter.
Over a few weeks, we picked about seven quarts of blueberries. Separating them was simple enough, and the same with rationing them. We just filled five quart-sized bags with the berries and marked them for the months when we’d use them. If I got a little parfait happy one month, then I just had to deal with running out before the end of the month. My goal is to keep building these seasonal food systems into my life. Not only will it make sure that we have good food for the cold times, but it’ll also build up my awareness of how much I use and convince me to waste less. It’s a whole lot easier to restrain yourself when you can see your whole store of food for the winter laid out before you.
There were still opportunities for less utilitarian systems, though. Like I said, flowers were a big part of this place. Now, I didn’t used to be a believer in flower vases in the home. Sure, I would pick a mason jar of wildflowers here and again to spruce up the place, but generally thought that paying for flowers wasn’t for me.
Well, I guess I was wrong.
I heard once that going to an art museum on a date was the best way to discover that person’s taste. You get to see what they avoid, what they appreciate, and what moves them. This exactly applies to picking flowers. There’s seems to be an expectation that certain presentations are supposed to always be a surprise, but I think it’s a mix. Getting both of you involved in picking music, food, and decor really gets some interesting things out on the table. It’s also really exciting if you meet back up and you’ve picked a lot of the same things.
So, come visit some time. Play your cards right, and there might be some pancakes.