There Must Be a Blessing…

There must be a blessing… We are including some of our older blogs on the meaning of the lot numbers. The following blog was from a couple of years ago, when we did our last harvest of Lot Sophia. However, we have replanted and many of you have received her bouquets this year, young, long stems… Read more »

Last Harvests of Season, Composting What’s Left

Last Harvests of Season, Composting What’s Left We are doing the last harvests of the season: yesterday, the rose geranium (and distillation), today the harvest of the Fuyu persimmons, which our son Jesse will include in First Light Farm Share boxes. He and his wife Lisa planted them some years ago and the trees are… Read more »

Managing Powdery Mildew During Veraison

Riping Chardonnay grapes     One of the challenges of grape growing is that of controlling powdery mildew or botrytis after the grapes start developing their sugars (veraison). During the growing season we use elemental sulfur, but as we get within 5-6 weeks of harvest, we must stop. The sulfur is known to leave a… Read more »

Rose Geranium: Last harvest and distillation of the season

last harvest We have completed our last harvest and distillation of the season!  Always this is an illusory feeling of relief!  Illusory, because there is ever so much to do before the rains begin, and never more so than this year with our replanting of lavender, rose geranium, and helichyrsum. But there are also compost… Read more »

Whispering Persimmons

Lisa and Jesse harvest persimmons with pruners.       They talk to you as you work: the persimmons, that is. The late afternoon sun is cool; the October earth, Mediterranean dry. The work goes quickly. Images come, for that is how persimmons speak:  Trap gophers!  Interplant more rose geranium!  Irrigate earlier for larger fruit!  Jesse, Lisa, and… Read more »

Harvest: Helichrysum Italicum

  Helichrysum italicum just before harvest. Harvest: Helichrysum Italicum It is as if the sun snowed!  Yellow blossoms dot the hillside, blossoms we harvest and distill today and tomorrow, Biodynamic flower days. The moon is in Gemini, an air sign,  and an ideal time for an  aromatic plant, as the energy is rising into the flower…. Read more »

Harvest: End of the Day

When the harvest was finally finished, we were all tired. Pickers are sparse in the Valley, and since we only had six, each man ended up picking more than two tons. Ramon’s son David watches from the safety of his yard. Cleaning leaves from bins. The last of the grapes, end of the day. Very… Read more »


Possible Showers Monday and Tuesday?? Yikes! Anxiety! I’d like to be philosophical, like I am with our son Jesse in talking about the business of farming, its uncertainties, how there is a lot we have no control over. It’s a partnership with Nature, I say. I know this from way back, from my farming father…. Read more »


Aaron Bader of Adler Fels Winery Waiting Our winemaker for Adler Fels Winery, Aaron Bader, tests the rest of the grapes, saying it will be another week to ten days before harvesting them. The weekend is to bring temperatures into the 90’s, which may speed the ripening up, but also be dehydrating. We will spray… Read more »


Harvest! Ramon tells me that the winemaker says, “Good fruit!”  He is understandably proud, having nurtured this crop for the last year, beginning with composting, then pruning.  By 9 am three tons have been picked. We supply the pickers with water and soda, and they continue. The day is cool and foggy, ideal picking weather…. Read more »