Farming Philosophy

Robert Chase, late of Essex Center VT , was a mentor, a skilled vegetable grower and a natural philosopher with many a pithy phrase.

At 6 a.m. I was hoeing a squash field that to the casual observer would have appeared not in need. With a wide stirrup hoe honed razor sharp, the effort required was no greater than sweeping a floor, but every few feet I could swipe off the blade an accumulation of weed seedlings that by the end of next week would have required three times the time and effort. "The best way to keep a field weed free is to keep it free of weeds," Robert had advised.

He also opined that the harder he worked, the luckier he seemed to get. I finished side dressing fertilizer onto a half acre of potatoes 10 minutes in advance of rainstorm that will dissolve the product and carry it to the root zone. 

I have been most fortunate in my life to have had a series of grandfathers for the natural ones I never met.