Our Harvest Calendar

Sep 6
Written By Kenna Kanneberg

When you don’t work a typical 9 to 5 job, it can be difficult to remember what day it is. Days on the farm are long and full. Days as a mom are long and full. Yet somehow both pass by so quickly. I am struggling to understand how we can be reaching the beginning of September. It’s a bittersweet season for me. Prior to farming and motherhood, I was a teacher. I loved my job. This summer I am stepping into a new role that I love in a different way. I get to stay home and raise my daughter and grow food for people I care about.

My prior job had me in an extremely structured routine. I knew (more or less) what to expect with each part of each month. Back to school, parent teacher conferences, report cards, student growth check-ins, it all became a part of my yearly rhythm. As someone who loves structure, I felt a bit nervous to leave that all behind! But as I spent more time on the farm this summer, I realized that the garden, too, creates its yearly calendar, if I am paying attention enough to see it.

We’re in the middle of August, when everyone is up to their eyeballs in cucumbers. We are learning our lesson that 40 cucumber plants was far too many for the number of weekly customers we have. I am hopeful that I will finally find the perfect pickle recipe - I sure have enough fruit to make many attempts. 

The end of August is when our apple tree is ready to make applesauce. Once we’ve picked all of our salable apples, it’s fun to invite friends over to help cut up the imperfect apples and make some applesauce for the winter.

Coinciding with the first week of school is tomato canning! In our house this is a big deal. Shane and I have canned all of our tomato products (think salsa, ketchup, barbecue sauce, etc.) since 2020. If we don’t preserve it in our kitchen, we do without it. We’ve also added peppers, onions and garlic to that list. I will always remember entering the morning sickness phase of the 1st trimester of pregnancy with my daughter on canning day; 3 full days of boiling ketchup was not my friend. Despite the time, energy (and last year, gagging) that it takes to produce this food, it feels so comforting to walk down into the basement and grab a can of pizza sauce that we produced to feed our family during the cold months of winter.


October brings the first killing frost and slowly I start to have more time, as my canning winds down. Yet, the month of October is still a great time to be harvesting pumpkins and freezing or canning them for pies and pancakes throughout the winter months. We always get a couple of heads of cabbage, as well, to ferment some kimchi and sauerkraut. And I will always remember to plant my garlic on October 31st, so it has time to vernalize in the ground before next year’s harvest.

Though the winter months may seem quieter on the farm, they too are full of excitement. Seed catalogs are often shipped in December or January. We spend many a cold, winter evening under a blanket on the couch, dreaming of next summer’s harvest. By then, it has been long enough that we have forgotten how much work it is to grow all of that food.

February is the month where we are extra appreciative of the food we preserved from the year before. We also begin starting most of our seeds in February, tending to them by our bay window for a few months before they are strong enough to go outside. By March, we are ready for fresh food again! Usually our chives are the first to make their appearance on the farm - typically popping up on the school’s spring break.

By April, we are ready for the harvest, planting our frost hardy seeds and transplants into the ground and counting down the days until the final frost of the season. Our perennial plants are working their way through the ground. The first asparagus and rhubarb of the season really indicate the arrival of spring! The chickens begin laying with fervor again as the days lengthen - everyone is ready for spring!

May is the busy month - planting out seeds, beginning to harvest the first greens and radishes of the year. June continues to be busy with harvesting, weeding and planting. Yet, I am able to slow down and celebrate summer with the arrival of the currants - which always ripen the week of my sister-in-law’s birthday in late June. The raspberries greet us on the 4th of July, without fail. They offer a celebration of flavor for a national holiday, as well as the birthday of our good friends’ children.
Though it can feel a lot less structured being home, away from the hustle and bustle of a typical work environment, I find myself grateful for the routines and rhythms that are a part of the design we find in nature. I look forward to getting to know more about the plants we grow and about our customers, so I can continue to connect our food to our community and view it as an opportunity - and a reminder - to celebrate the abundance around us.

Thanks for reading,