Rain, Rain Go Away

Normally at this time of year I would be begging Mother Nature for just an inch or two of moisture for my Dahlia farm on Highland Street. Not this year!

On Sunday morning just past 4 am I awoke to thunder and lighting. As the market master for the local Farmer’s Market, my first instinct was to check the interactive weather radar. The radar was at least promising in that the skies seemed to clear in several hours’ time.

The application for the Farmer’s Market clearly states the market will be held “rain or shine”. Several vendors had already notified me that they would be no shows. Like the trepidation of what a school superintendent must feel on whether to call a snow day or not, I pondered the radar once again. Would that cell on the radar near the CT/RI. border blow up our way? Would customers show up if it rained? Would the farmers be miffed if I canceled this late, they having already loaded their vehicles? I decided the show must go on and arrived on the rail trail shrouded in a light fog.

The ever-faithful market steering committee, Theresa Lampkin, Ben Clarkson, Jay Robinson, Toni Clark, Dick Morse, and Erin Anderson all arrived to help vendors unload. MacArthur’s, Silverwood, Out Post, Five Hive Honey, Wild Robbins farms all showed their true grit of attending the market with less than throngs of crowds as in previous weeks.

Runners warm up while vendors unload.

With less activity, the steering committee turned to conversation and local goings-on under a tent and light mist. The discussion centered around the pedestrian mishap the previous day on Summer Street, Was anyone hurt? Do trail users actually press the button to make the flashing yellow lights at street crossings? That light mist was now turning to a downpour.

The real elephant in the room was the plight of local farmers. Laura Raney of Silverwood Farm on Western Ave. in Sherborn said they were thinking about laying black plastic on the ground to pick whatever crops are available so they wouldn’t sink in the mud. Peter MacArthur is unable to move machinery in his field on Highland Street due to the mud. This Dahlia farmer has lost 65 to 70% of my crop of 14,000 Dahlia plants as they have simply drowned. Never have any of the farmers I spoke to, ever seen a wetter July.

Remember, the Zucchini contest was postponed from last week to this Sunday.  All this rain should be great for growing BIG squash.

Bobby Blair

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