Small Wonder: Spring on Green Island Farm

I was heading out to the farm stand with this bowl of radishes the other day when a friend intercepted me and bought one bunch straight out of the dish. After that, I rushed in to get the camera before the next bunch disappeared (which it did, very shortly thereafter.) I don’t blame these folks for snatching up the radishes—honestly, is there a cheerier harbinger of spring? Well, I guess you could name quite a few things (flowering trees, singing birds, green grass), but in the vegetable world, radishes are as cheery as it gets. And thanks to the hoop house, I’ve got radishes in April—yippee!

I am celebrating the small stuff all around the farm today as it happens to be warm and sunny, and I was beginning to think “warm and sunny” was some mirage I’d never quite reach. (I should say it is “warmish” here—high 50s.) On Monday it blew so hard that the latch on the gate to the big chicken pen popped open (which it hasn’t done in previous storms) and all of the 200 chickens in it went for a walkabout—over to the neighbor’s woods, through a pine grove, around the future pig pen, and just generally anywhere they could disappear. It took us the better part of the day to get them all back in. Argh. Not to be snide, but I have to say that one of the things I am celebrating today is no wind—and chickens happily back in their pen.

Also, this morning I was reading one of my favorite blogs, Finding Your Soul, and in his post today, “Everything We Need Is Right Here,” David Anderson talks about all the wonder that’s right in front of our eyes while we’re off seeking something better somewhere else. So I thought to take the camera and snap a few other things I’m marveling at now that spring is actually coming to Green Island Farm.

Chartreuse maple flowers unfurling on bare branches against a Carolina blue sky.


Big fat healthy tomato plants in the greenhouse. We started our “early” tomatoes in February and have managed to bring them along nicely, letting them hang out in the hoop house by day and stay snug inside the house at night.


Copious amounts of bok choy to sell at the farm stand. We grew the first batch in the hoop house. Batches 2 and 3 (including the pretty purple stuff) are coming along in a long raised bed outside the hoop house (where the early tomatoes will be transplanted in a few weeks.) Get some of this delicious veggie into your kitchen soon–here’s one recipe idea (a stir-fry; my friend Joannie says this is the best!) and here’s another (my friend Eliza’s favorite–Spicy Noodle Hot Pot!).



The pea plants germinated beautifully and are ready to come out from under cover, where they’ve been hiding from the birds.


Basil seedlings are healthy and we have hundreds of them!


Beautiful Pirat Butterhead lettuce is “too pretty to cut” my friend Mary says. Alas, I’ve already tucked into it and pulled heads for the farm stand.


Last year’s everbearing strawberry plants already have blossoms.


And yes, the grass is green. I know, I know but this is a big deal to me. We’ve been looking at mud for months. This is the pine grove at one end of our back field, where Farmer and I go for walks.

And when it comes to being excited about springtime and fresh grass, no one’s happier than Farmer. We’ll be walking along and all of a sudden he just gets down and does a roly-poly in the grass. He stands back up, shakes, and then skips off, happy as can be. We should all be so carefree. Maybe if your day isn’t going so well, you could try rolling in the warm grass!





6 thoughts on “Small Wonder: Spring on Green Island Farm”

  1. Am loving seeing your photos … You are ahead of us here in Maine. Your vegetables are beautiful …

  2. Nice post, Susie, and a good reminder to appreciate all that we have, right now. Today I’ve been working outside most of this gorgeous day, and at one point, I just laid down on the ground for a few minutes and looked up into the beautiful blue sky. (Kind of like Farmer I guess!). It reminded me of those days so long ago that seemed to last forever, when I was a kid, and just lay there watching the clouds move, or an airplane. Spring is wonderful!

  3. Anne, that’s so great! Stopping to take the time to do that is wonderful…and so relaxing. Yes, thank God for Spring!

  4. Thanks for this, Susie–so many gorgeous images of spring–my favorite is the little basil sprouts (they’re going to grown up, I’m salivating, into PESTO!).

  5. How I hope my garden will grow as lovely! Thank you for sharing David Anderson’s blog. It was exactly what I needed.

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