August: The Fifth Season

August: The Fifth Season In California, August is a kind of fallow month. The following excerpt from Farming Soul: A Tale of Initiation tells why: Ash and the Fifth Season In the Mediterranean-like climate of the Napa Valley, there is a period of summer dormancy that has is often called the fifth season. The grasses are… Read more »

The Gold of Farming

The Word for the Day, this rainy morning, from Mountains and oceans have whole worlds of innumerable wondrous features. We should understand that it is not only our distant surroundings that are like this, but even what is right here, even a single drop of water.  DOGEN ZENJI   Yes, it surprised us and… Read more »

Preparing for the New Cuttings

Pile of old plants being uprooted in Field Sophia.             Preparing for the New Cuttings August allows the leisure to do projects that we do not have time for other times of the year. Some call this time of the year of summer dormancy in California (Mediterranean climate)  the fifth… Read more »

The Greening

Shoots of native blue wildrye illuminated by sun photographed against the dry grass of mid October.                 The Greening This time of year is magical to me. For the last months in our Mediterranean climate, everything has been brown, and the fire danger, high, especially as autumn approached…. Read more »

The Fifth Season

Summer dormancy. Judith Larner speaks of this time as being the Fifth Season in the Mediterranean climate of California, a period of summer dormancy that I also write about in Farming Soul: A Tale of Initiation. On our ranch, it is a time of doing projects we normally do not have time for: building a… Read more »

Nature’s First Green

This time of year is intensely green in northern California. The hills are verdant, the forest, gold (Nature’s first green…). Psychologist Carl Jung says the alchemical benedicta viriditas, the blessed greenness, is “the sacred immanence of the divine spirit of life in all things”. A walk in the forests or the green hills of Napa… Read more »