Wow! This heatwave is getting us ready for a hot summer! 5 days in the low to mid 90s is enough to wear down even the most experienced farmer. When your livelihood is made by being a farmer you have to train yourself to overcome heat waves. It is important to balance your work with plenty of rest and hydration. We enjoy filling our cattle troughs with ice cold hose water and using it as an outdoor ice bath to help us cool off after hours in the hot sun.
In terms of farm work for the week; we haven't slowed down because of the heat! We have full removed all the stakes from last year's tomato field- which was over 2,000 stakes. We typically try to get that job done in the fall after the tomatoes have stopped producing, but unfortunately that doesn't always happen as we'd like it to and then we are stuck doing it in the spring. Over the last week we've had one of our former gymnasts, Ian, out here helping us on the farm. It's always a blessing having young muscle out here on the farm doing tasks like these!
Maple sugar; it's something we have never made before but we've always talked about doing. With this heat wave and the intermittent rainfalls we decided it was time to try it! We did a bit of research beforehand so we knew what to expect and what to look for. From there on we just went for it! It has been a fun experience learning how you can start with drilling a hole in a maple tree to get sap (which is essentially water) and end with fine crystalized pieces of maple sugar! Maple sugar can be used in recipes in the same way as cane sugar is used. It can be used to sweeten drinks, top oatmeal or incorporated into a flavorful rub for meats! Maple sugar is on average twice as sweet as cane sugar, so it makes for a wonderful substitue for making sweet treats and desserts!