Welcome Change

CR Lawn, 2010

Hard to imagine two more contrasting years in the garden than 2009 and 2010. Even as the blighted 2009 faded mercifully into distant memory, 2010 was becoming one of the truly vintage years in my gardening lifetime, so good that I savored almost every moment and was sorry to see it end. In farmers markets from Unity, ME, to Amherst, MA, I was delighted to see broad smiles on the faces of growers enjoying the great abundance. The heat and humidity were trying to us from time to time, and the occasional lack of adequate moisture worrisome, but most plants grew ecstatically.

If we took the temperatures and rainfall from 2009 and 2010 and averaged them, we would come close to a statistically normal season, rather than the two aberrant ones we had. But as Joe Kurland, my neighbor in the Colrain, MA, hill country averred shortly after I moved into the area, “there is no such thing as a normal year here.” And probably not where you farm or garden, either.