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Saturday, January 22, 2011

Dreaming of Spring

Sometimes winter can be long . . . very long. It seems like no matter how much dreaming of spring and summer you do, it is always just beyond reach. I'm sure like many others, I have been doing my share of dreaming of warmer weather lately.

On my windowsill I have a little plant that keeps me dreaming. It's a little sweet potato vine in a jar of water. For quite a few years in a row, I have started my sweet potato cuttings from, well, sweet potatoes. (You can read more about that by searching "sweet potato" on the right sidebar of my blog -which if you want to do, now would be a good time to start). This year I decided to try something different to see if I could skip a step - using an established vine to get my cuttings for garden starts.

Before the weather turned bitter, I took a cutting from my sweet potato plant in the garden. I brought it inside and stuck it in a jar of water. I was quite excited because I was starting out with a beautiful looking vine. The leaves were big, green, and abundant. Before I knew it, however, the leaves started to fall off one by one. Pretty soon I was looking out my window at winter weather with a virtually leafless vine in a jar of water. With only a couple of leaves left, no bigger than my thumbnail, I didn't have much hope for the little vine.

I would have almost thrown it away if I hadn't seen what was going on under the water though. I noticed a few white bumps on the vine. And as I continued to watch them, they continued to grow. Into roots. And not just little roots. Long, healthy, white roots.

As these roots were growing, there wasn't much going on above the surface of the water. Just a few little leaves that continued to hang on. But as time continued to pass, and as the roots continued to grow, a few new leaves started to emerge. Although little at first, they were beautiful to see. These little leaves soon grew bigger, and a few more little leaves burst forth.

Sometimes it seems like this snow and cold is here to stay, but when I look out the window I am first greeted by my little sweet potato vine reminding me that spring IS coming. And although above the surface it might still look a little rough, it has been lucky to have had the winter to do some growth under the surface so that when spring does come, it can take off and be used to produce fruit . . . err . . . vegetables.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Jonathan Thomas Book

Crooked Gap Farm is pleased to introduce our newest farm hand - Jonathan Thomas Book!

Jonathan was born January 6th and is doing great. He was 10 days late, helping him grow to be our biggest baby - 7 lbs, 9.8 ounces. (Caleb, our first born, had to give up his record of 7 lbs 1 oz.)

Jonathan is doing great, and Caleb (6), Hannah (5), and Isaac (2) are each enjoying him immensely.
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