November, 2011
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GLEANINGS: n. 1. That which has been acquired by gleaning. 2. The monthly eNewsletter of CT NOFA. [Glean:v. 1. to gather relevant information or material by patient effort, bit by bit; to find out. 2. to gather grain or other produce (often: left by reapers); to harvest.]
From the Executive Director

bill duesing
It was just a Saturday afternoon snow storm. Nine days later, folks I know still didn't have power.

The "lost week" as so many people we know struggled just to get by will create ripples well into the future.

During the week without power, we did pretty well in our small house with a wood stove for heat, propane for cooking, lots of food from storage and under the snow in the garden and water from the local firehouse. But the long dark periods really changed the rhythm of the day. We had wonderful visits from children and grandchildren who didn't have heat and we also caught up on our sleep.

The second weekend without power was perfect for planting garlic. (Timing of planting is a frequent subject of conversation, and many opinions. John Holbrook in Bethel said he plants on Columbus Day and harvests on July 4. Vincent Kay who grows a lot of garlic in Hamden likes to plant in early November and wait to mulch until the ground is frozen. Wayne Hansen in Oneco likes to plant his garlic during the last two weeks in October and did it during the early part of that window, but remembers a farmer's wife saying her husband planted garlic with a pick axe to get into the frozen soil. Just make sure you plant it. The weather is so variable, that there may never be an ideal time for this year.)

This was just a little snowstorm, just as we had some snow last winter and a tropical storm in the summer. Normal events but with a timing, intensity and/or effect way outside of normal. Scary is a word often heard.

Hopefully soon, even more folks will realize that we need to pay greater attention to meeting our basic needs for food, shelter and clothing in ways the both mitigate our effects on the climate and provide adaption to the changes that are here now and likely to be increasing soon.

Growing more food, organically, in more places, is a key part of that strategy.