Even Now

I recall reading once that our ancestors thought of early spring as “the starving time,” rather than the dead of winter. Just as spring would begin to arrive, the world turning green in promise of coming abundance, the food stored for winter would begin to spoil or run out, before the bounty of spring and summer had appeared. It seems a cruel time to be hungry.

Of course very few of us go hungry these days while waiting for nature to start generating food again. If early spring was once considered a starving time, that’s a thing of the past now.

No one is starving here on White Flint Farm, but this is the time of year when we have the fewest fresh things coming in. We still have plenty of great food in storage, but our overwintered veggies are gone and the veggies we planted in March aren’t mature yet.

So what’s a seasonal eater to do?

No problem. The hens know spring is here so they’re laying like crazy. Thanks to the rains we have shiitake mushrooms blooming on our logs. And, best of all, the asparagus is coming in strong.

An asparagus and mushroom omelet perhaps?

Take care of a place and it will take care of you. It feels good to be in a relationship like that.


18 comments on “Even Now

  1. Oh my–asparagus! How I envy you. I’ve still got lots of time before that.
    I’m always thankful for my freezers…..chock full of goodness, though even they are getting a bit empty. Ran completely out of applesauce, raspberries, blueberries and corn. Still have plenty of green beans, strawberries and peaches. The potatoes are getting a bit……..soft and the onions are thinking of sprouting. Yes. Let’s bring on garden season!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bill says:

      We still have lots of sweet potatoes, but our regular potatoes and onions are gone. We’ll have lettuce and tatsoi soon, and lots of things shortly thereafter. I’m with you. Come on spring.


  2. Ed says:

    For me, it is morel mushroom time, besides the asparagus and eggs. It won’t be long for the first salads to arrive as well! I can’t imagine referring to this time of year as a starving time.


    • Bill says:

      If you’re finding morels I envy you. I see my friends posting pictures of their finds on Facebook and I’m jealous. I haven’t found any. I don’t mean this year. I mean ever. In my life. It’s ridiculous.


  3. BeeHappee says:

    Native Americans called February Moon a Lean Moon or Starvation Moon, because hunting was sparse at that time. But so far from what I am reading, they attempted to always store at least one year’s worth of corn reserves, as well as seeds of wild grasses.
    I would think up north March and April is lean goings as things dwindle down, but down south, you guys should start seeing forest goodies coming up, the nettles, garlic, etc. Well, and of course that hoop house!! I am jealous of your breakfast! 🙂


    • Bill says:

      Nature does give us some food this time of year, but I’m not sure it would be enough to sustain a person (or a village). Fortunately we don’t have to survive off wild onions and fiddleheads any more. 🙂

      We could have kept things going in the hoophouse but I needed to start prepping it for summer plantings. Yesterday I planted green beans, three weeks earlier than I would plant them outside. We’ll be putting in tomatoes and other things over the next week or so. It’s all new to me so I’ll be interested to see how it goes. I’m already looking forward to that first tomato!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. “Take care of a place and it will take care of you. It feels good to be in a relationship like that.” Great summary.


    • Bill says:

      Thanks. That first sentence has been on my mind a lot lately and I’m featuring it in my writing project. I’m convinced that it is true.


  5. barnraised says:

    Ours started laying again too and we just did our 2nd round of egg burritos… feels so good.


  6. You could go out to breakfast at a fancy hotel and get a mushroom and asparagus omelet. Maybe with some sun dried tomatoes from last summer. You could pay a lot of money for the ambiance of fresh plants and soft lighting. And a good cup of coffee to sip and be idle and count your blessings.
    Or. . . .
    You could stay at home and have the same.

    All the best to you this spring.


    • Bill says:

      We laugh about that here sometimes. What would a restaurant charge for that omelet (made with eggs from GMO-free free range hens, local chem-free asparagus picked that day and oak-log shiitakes)? And what did it cost us?

      Cherie’s out of town tonight so I was on my own for supper. So I caught a fish in the pond and picked some mustard greens. Fried the fish and cooked the greens. It doesn’t get any fresher than that.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. hilarymb says:

    Hi Bill – good to see your Spring garden coming to fruition of abundance – love asparagus and ours is a-coming … then I will feast on it … mushrooms too – but I live in a town and get out to the farm shop on occasions. Cheers and enjoy your fruits of spring! – Hilary



  8. Joanna says:

    Asparagus, even if ours had survived we would be looking at another month yet and I have only just set our tomatoes to germinate so they are ready to plant beginning of next month. Lol such a difference between our latitudes. It would have been the hungry time for us, sort of this year but spring has come a bit earlier than normal and so we have greens coming through. I suppose we would have relied on grains to keep us going as potatoes need planting up soon.


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