Animals Farm Life Vegetables and Berries

First Frost

The first fall frost welcomed us in the fields this morning. You know there is no turning back to summer once frost has hit, even if, as they are forecasting this Thanksgiving weekend, it is followed by a balmy Indian summer spell. While some vegetables resist, and even relish, frost (brocoli, jerusalem artichokes and lettuce, to name a few), others, such as eggplant, peppers and zucchini, wilt at the first hint of sub-zero temperatures. Cooler nights in September triggered the seasonal migration of mice from field to farm buildings, where relative warmth and shelter beckon. As a result, the latest additions to the farm a couple of weeks ago are two 6-month-old cats, Castor and Pollux. We have high hopes that they will grow into tough barn cats, guarding seeds and grain and keeping the mouse population under tight control. While neither the mice nor the cats seem to mind, the warehouse, which is nice and cool in the heat of summer, has turned ice-boxy – a frigid 4 degrees Celsius this morning. Usually, when we assemble baskets, they go into the cold room for a few hours’ storage before loading up the delivery van. No need this morning though — we simply left the baskets on the assembly shelves, like veggies on a fridge shelf.