Love and encouragement were given to us by the helping hands of friends and family when we put up a 30’x48′ moveable high tunnel. The frame went up on one hot, glorious day at the end of May. When I look at it I see more than the structure. I see the faces and hear the chatter of the crew that volunteered to help us; standing on construction ladders, or bracing them, drills in hand, bolts and bits at the ready. Al’s mom brought a giant tray of delicious homemade banana pudding and my mom set out lunch. Every action lifted us up, just like the sections on that building. It’s very humbling to hear and see the answer “yes” when we need help. We are so grateful to the wonderful people working that day.
What’s so great about a high tunnel? Al will tell you it’s a key part of creating a microclimate that will produce a variety of fresh food throughout the year. This is not a greenhouse with a covered floor and artificial heat. The “movable” function of this high tunnel allows crop rotation and soil rest. Instead of feet, the bottom of the high tunnel is like a sled. This is a covered winter garden, we will be growing in the soil using the same sustainable methods we practice during the summer. A chef at the King Farmers Market summed it up differently. “So, you might have dirt tomatoes late in the fall?” From her lips to God’s ear. The plan is to have dirt tomatoes and a few other things growing late into the fall.
In between prepping for markets, going to markets and tying up tomatoes the day goes fast. Al and his dad are currently putting up the end walls. I help where I can. The next step will be covering it with plastic. A day when our efforts alone won’t be enough and we’ll need to ask for help. We are thankful for the friends and family that will still take our call and answer yes. Lunch and banana pudding anyone?