2020 has been a year of challenges on the farm. We had no stone fruit. We had a hard freeze during apple and pear bloom, and many flowers were killed. The freeze also killed most of our outdoor strawberry blooms, even though they hadn't opened yet. We had a summer-long drought. Foxes, yes, foxes, ate a good deal of our remaining strawberry crop. Cucumber beetles and squash bugs destroyed our multiple successions of cucumber plants, despite our best efforts to keep them at bay. Turkeys ate our grapes. Potato leafhoppers killed our potato plants.
Despite its challenges, 2020 has also been a wonderful year. We are farming new land! We cleared honeysuckle and fenced 8 acres in the sweltering July sun. We built a 1/2 mile long farm road. We are building a barn. We cut our own firewood to heat our home this winter. The blueberry bushes we planted in 2019 are growing well! We planted 16 varieties of basket willow with hopes of learning to weave willow baskets. Our apples were delicious and extra sweet from the drought, and we sold them all. Our pears were the best we've ever grown. The winter squash grew so well, and all went to good homes. Our ~900 fruit trees we grafted this spring grew quickly, and are healthy and ready to transplant in Spring 2021. We sold vegetable plants to happy people in the midst of a pandemic, and you grew your own gardens! We had the best customer support at the Ithaca Farmers Market and our fruit stand, and we are so thankful!