I’ve been dreaming a lot lately–mostly about gardening. And switching careers to follow my passion of growing vegetables and cooking. I’ve been thinking about this more and more frequently, and more and more seriously. So it seemed somewhat serendipitous a couple of weekends ago when Hubby and I spotted 10 acres of farmland for sale not far from our house. The location was excellent, as it is only a couple of miles from our CSA pick up location. My mind began churning with ideas: I could grow food for the CSA, we could have chickens and supply plenty of fresh eggs to the CSA, I could sell extra goods at a roadside stand on the property (it sees plenty of traffic daily)…I was excited.
Today I finally got a chance to call and ask about the property. First question: “Is it still available?” Answer: “It is, but we’ve had a couple of offers.” Second question: “How much are you asking?” Answer: “Three hundred.” As in, $300,000. I nearly dropped the phone. That’s $30,000 per acre! Me: “Well, thank you for your time.” Click. Holy. I mean, I didn’t even know where to begin…that was a ridiculous amount of money for that piece of land (to me, anyway). And herein lies the problem for so many young people (I’m including myself in this category even though I’m not as young as I used to be) looking to get into farming who don’t have trust funds: many old-time farmers selling off their land because their kids don’t want to farm, sell to developers, at costs much higher than what the land would be worth as farm land, because they will sub-divide it and build either 1) homes or 2) shopping centers. It’s frustrating and seems hopeless at times. I felt like a little kid at the fair who had my balloon shot down with a BB gun, because I felt completely deflated after that 60 second call.
I sent Hubby a quick email saying, “Just kidding! We didn’t really want to buy that land…because we’d have to sell our house and live in a tent.” Here’s what he wrote back:
“A limerick for you: Don’t worry bean sprout; There is no need to pout; You want to grow; This I do know; It will most definitely work out.”
That put a smile on my face and made me realize how lucky I am to have such a supportive husband. Someday I will realize my dream, but it will take some time. In the meantime, I’ll keep setting aside money and making a plan. My dream will materialize one day.
On a completely different, and very exciting note, I discovered something I wasn’t expecting this past weekend. Back in August I ordered some seeds for fall planting and some saffron crocus bulbs. I have never bought saffron in the grocery store because 1) it is so expensive and 2) I really don’t cook with many recipes requiring saffron. But I thought, heck, if I can grow it myself…so I ordered 10 bulbs. They are fall-blooming, and hardy only to Zone 6. I knew I would have to plant them in pots to get them through my harsh Zone 4 winters. So I planted them when they arrived (which was early October) and waited. And watched. And waited some more. Nothing. It finally got cold and I had to bring them inside. They are in the basement, in the laundry room, with very little light. I usually forget to water them, too. But one day I noticed little green shoots popping out of the soil. So I began turning on the light which is so weak I’m sure they think I’m patronizing them. But Saturday morning (laundry day) I noticed a little purple bulge amongst the leaves. “No way,” I thought. “Holy. Shit. These little guys are going to flower!” And now I’ve got a 2nd purple bulge and 1 opening flower:
I am totally psyched about this. I thought for sure I wouldn’t see flowers until next year. I came upstairs and did my little happy dance when I told Hubby what I discovered. He just laughed at me, but in loving (“You are my little plant nerd”) sort of way. I can’t wait to see the beautiful flowers in full bloom. And harvest some saffron!