OK, well, there’s no good way to ease into this, so here goes:

The thunderstorm today was very exciting. We got 11/10″ of rain here at our house, and it’s a real gift to get water from the sky here in the desert. However, the hail was not so wonderful.

Crazy June Hailstorm

Crazy June Hailstorm (Cookiehorse doesn't seem to mind)

We covered what we could, and moved some stuff into the greenhouse, and some into the hoophouse, then went inside to wait it out. When we came out to check things over, we found mostly a big mess. To begin with, the hoophouse has collapsed under the weight of all the water.

This is what the Hoophouse looked like last year (and until this afternoon)

This is what the Hoophouse looked like last year (and this year until this afternoon)



Luckily, nothing is planted in there yet. However, the hail was coming in at a sharp angle, and many of the things we put in the hoophouse for shelter were completely mangled.  They narrowly escaped flattening though, for some lucky reason.

Close Call

Close Call

The plants which were outside were not so lucky. Those which we covered with sheets look frozen, and those which were left bare seem to be basically destroyed.

Corn and Beans are sad together

Corn and Beans are sad together

Pak Choi

Pak Choi smash

The way that most CSAs work is that the members share the many risks of farming with the farmer. That’s the point of paying in advance – the members bankroll the project in exchange for the labor of the farmers, and reap the bounty, in the form of produce, all season long. Thus, if a crop fails, no one is on the hook for the whole thing, so no one loses their shirt.

We decided a long time ago, though, that we didn’t want to hold our members to something like that this year, because it is our first year. It seems unfair to ask you to take a risk on us, as well as the myriad other crucial factors.

What we’re getting at here is that we may have more than one crop fail this year, due to today’s storm. It is too soon to know for sure how the plants are going to do after today’s battering, and your first pickup is set for nine days from now. It may be that the season start is delayed for one or more weeks; it may be that we decide we have to call the whole thing off. Obviously we are hoping neither of those things has to happen. Today is Tuesday, and we are going to wait until Friday to make a decision. As soon as we do, we will get in touch with each of you and let you know what is going to happen. We will make it up to you if we have to alter the season in any way – either we will extend it further into fall, or pro-rate it and return part of your money, or, if worst comes to worst, refund your whole subscription. Let’s all cross our fingers against that!

In the meantime, if you have any questions, feel free to get in touch with us. Otherwise, you’ll hear from us on Friday.


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