New Lessons And Old Memories Down On The Farm

| 6/6/2016 11:12:00 AM

Country MoonNo till1


A couple weeks ago I had an opportunity to go back in time. Growing up as a Michigan farm kid back in the 1960’s and 1970’s (I know, I seem to date myself a lot lately!) meant a lot of hard work. Even so, those days were some of the best times of my life even though I did not always realize it back then.

My parents not only farmed 150 acres, which in those days was a sizable farm, but they also put in a huge 2-acre truck garden. We raised the gamut from potatoes, tomatoes, sweet corn, peppers and everything in between that we could sell at our produce stand in the front yard since we were located right on M-60. After these “regular” crops were done, Dad put in turnips as a cover crop and people would come from miles around for their free turnips from “the turnip man” as he was known.

It was just normal for us three kids to be in the fields and the garden from dawn to dusk, literally, during our summer “vacation.” Most kids who are put to this test run the other way as soon as they can and I was no different. It is hard work. But, after being away for a while, I realized how very special digging in the dirt was. I have always tinkered in my garden, but this year I got the chance to go back “down on the farm” and help Ron when he planted his field corn and soy beans.

There is no other joy like smelling the scent of a fresh-plowed field and seeing the tiny seeds that will soon become mature plants feeding a nation being dropped in rows and covered all to the hum of a tractor. It was especially magical when we planted late one night after dark to the light of a full moon. It was like we had the whole world to ourselves, just us and nature. Even more miraculous was to dig down in just three days after planting and see a bean sprouted already; a new life from a seed that had looked dormant earlier. Pretty awesome.

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