The Farm: Autumn Plans

Barbaras Apple1

The hot days are upon us, and Waverly Farm, not being planted for summer crops, is a dry and dusty, forlorn looking place. Even Cheri’s incred­i­ble toma­toes are winding down. And every­thing along the front fence — ripped out and barren looking. Sad, sad, sad. But the new school year is begin­ning, our young farmers have returned… and there is a plan.

My east coast friends main­tain that South­ern Cali­for­nia is season­ally chal­lenged– no seasons at all, or at the most two: a wet and a dry. Well, they may not hit you in the face like an eastern fall, but any gardener around here will tell you we have lots of seasons, sort of mini-seasons. Jacaranda season, camel­lia season, fire season, and on my front porch these days, big icky spider season. And now, there’s a new season, coming soon to Waverly Farm. Apple cider season. We are part­ner­ing with our friends at Tree People and plant­ing a hedge of apple trees along the front of the farm. While we wait for apples, we’ll be banking some of the proceeds from our market days, saving up to buy a big, old-fash­ioned wooden cider press. Get a bunch of kids, pick some apples, dump those apples in the hopper — crank the cranks, grind them up, smash them, press them, squeeze them, make some deli­cious juice. Sounds like some authen­tic autumn‑y fun, right? Let’s go put on sweaters right now! Well, maybe not. But while the Septem­ber sun is shining so hot on our heads that our hair feels that it will ignite, we can dream of crisp apples and crisp days to come.

Barbara Ayers, Waverly Farm Coordinator