We always love an inside look at what’s happening on the farm, and Welling Tom has always supplied us with some of the best insights into the day to day, season to season, happenings at Brookside Farm in Brentwood, CA. Here’s the update he emailed us from last week, complete with a Steely Dan quote:


Welling Tom

Some of our fruit trees (early pluots, late peaches, cherries) had the misfortune of being in bloom when it was raining, which interfered with their pollination, and now we see a small amount of fruit developing on them, while other fruit trees (Asian pears) avoided that problem, and should yield abundantly. Luck of the draw.

Throughout the winter, we’ve been able to produce a few crops of various short-season greens, but just enough to present a shifting array at the farmers’ market. Only since the beginning of May, we’ve produced enough sugar snap peas and fava beans to constitute a steady supply of something.

After last month’s late, heavy rain storms, we now seem to be heading toward summer on a relatively even keel. Within the past 2 weeks, we’ve been able to get our definitive summer crops (tomatoes, romano beans, cucumbers, etc.) safely into the fields. Our earliest tomato plants were ready from the nursery back in March, but the rainy weather prevented us from preparing the field for them. By the time we were finally able to transplant them, they looked rather long in the tooth, but the recent warm weather has already allowed them to resume their proper growth, and they should be in good production by mid- or late-July, and should continue at least through September. That’s something that we count on every year.

So, we go back, Jack, do it again, wheel turning round and round, although it seems that this year the wheel has had quite a few wobbles.

Welling Tom