I am currently reading The Lean Startup by Eric Ries. I’m only half way through it, but Eric stresses the most valuable asset a startup business can have is validated learning. Meaning you need to gain knowledge as quickly as possible to know whether you should pivot from or sustain the path your business is traveling on.
If knowledge is our most expensive asset right now, then we are sitting on a freaking gold mine.
We have learned so stinking much in the teensy three months that we’ve been farming. Things that we thought wouldn’t go all that great have done exceedingly well and things we for sure thought would be a breeze have left us scratching our heads wondering where we went wrong in the process. And this whole farming thing isn’t a process where you can retrace your steps and fix what you did wrong in the beginning and then proceed. You figure out two months into it where you messed up, take some notes on it, drop a couple of swear words, and then try it again a year later.
So here’s our wealth of knowledge that we gained this week:
Our first project this week involved trying to block some of the damned wind on this breezy hilltop.
We put up a super high-tech “fence” (I have to use quotes, I feel wrong even calling the thing an actual fence) with cheap landscape fabric, t-posts, and scraps of wood. It seems to be working on about 1/3 of the garden. We need to get another one up on the west side of the garden, but wanted to see if the thing would hold up first before pouring more money into a temporary wind block.
We also started laying drip tape down (our irrigation system) and straw between the beds and on some of the beds. Pictured above are our Snapdragons, the drip tape are the two black hose things at the bottom of the photograph. They’ll eventually hook up to what is called “lay flat” which is a hose that runs the length of the garden and provides water to all the beds.
We also laid down landscape fabric and drip tape on our tomato beds. Chris had the fun task of using a torch to burn holes into the landscape fabric. I think he enjoyed using the torch more than he led on.
Someone even came off of their perch (a.k.a. the riding lawn mower) to help.
Our chickens are still enjoying their new home with their run. They have a pheasant that drops by each morning to check them out, flex his muscles, and shows the hens how cool he looks jumping his skateboard off the trashcans (that last part didn’t really happen, but I assume that’s how any teenage boy tries to impress the ladies). The picture below is blurry since it was taken through the screen of our kitchen window.
So each week we keep gaining and gaining more knowledge. But where does all that knowledge go? I think in the part of the brain that we’ll have to knock spider webs off of next year when we ask ourselves again “what are we doing?” and we’ll reply, “I dunno, but let’s give it another and better go.”