By Karen Keb Acevedo
The first summer I spent on my farm back in 2005 was magical.
The raised beds were left dormant for several years, but the lawn was lush and green, courtesy of a lawn service (via a curb-appeal attempt from the previous owners).
For the first time in a long while, I could plant a garden, entertain friends and experience the bounty of summertime on a farm.
Deciding to start modestly, I planted tomatoes, zucchini and basil that first year, and without a previous year’s history of pests in the soil, it exploded with abundance. I harvested baskets of heirloom tomatoes and overflowing bowls of basil, from which I made batches of pesto.
With the yard and garden looking so beautiful and fireflies punctuating the landscape, I threw a Fourth of July party, complete with straw-bale benches and fairy lights strung around the deck. We ate salsa freshly made from my tomatoes, and friends brought dishes to share with the group. Except for the sudden and explosive downpour mid-party, the night was a happy one for all.
This issue of Hobby Farm Home serves as a virtual road map for summer fun on the farm. Throw a local potluck (page 16) ... build an earth oven (page 30) ... light the outdoors with bounty from your farm (page 60) ... photograph your pet (page 70) ... go canoeing (page 88)!
It also serves as a guide for maximizing all your fresh and delicious homegrown fruits and vegetables during this crazy season of abundance. To dehydrate it, turn to page 24; to juice it, turn to page 44; and to prepare simple meals with your garden-fresh veggies, turn to “Farm-style Fast Food” on page 38. Plus, check out this step-by-step guide to canning.
The possibilities are endless!