Farming is a dynamic job, a complex web of moving parts. Sometimes, like now, it is difficult to prioritize when everything seems equally important and time sensitive.  

We have many herbs ready to be harvested in the fields, dryer bays full of drying herbs to be bagged and weighed, weeds growing faster than our crops in the summer sun, irrigation, paperwork, order fulfillment, the list goes on and on. In the midst of all this chaos comes fall seeding. 

When August comes,  spending time making mix, filling trays, meticulously tapping seeds into tiny cells feels almost painful when you know the bindweed is wrapping around the crops and some herbs are waiting for harvest. 

And yet fall planting is particularly important for us, for a number of reasons: 1) We grow many perennial herbs that may need two or more years to reach maturity and planting them in the fall gives us a jump on the next season. 2) Many of our annual herbs would naturally seed themselves in late summer (to mature in early summer the following season), so when we mimic their natural rhythms, it results in a higher yield. 3) It saves time, energy,and money to let nature water for us with autumn rains rather than paying people to move pipes, buying fuel, and putting wear on our water pump. 4) We can finish harvesting in early summer and put in later succession plantings after. 5)  Crops must be sufficiently established before the cold sets in and the daylight dwindles so they survive the winter frosts and don’t get lost in the weeds while it is too wet for us to weed them.

On the farm, we are  connected to the seasons into a seamless flow of work and planning for the season upon us and the seasons months in advance. It takes attention to detail, careful planning, hard physical labor, and a love for the land. 

Happy growing to you and yours,

Elana Quinlan Scheidegger 

Oshala Farm

Seeds, Nursery, and Fresh Orders