Einkorn Farming Update Spring 2019
When you look at this picture of the einkorn farm, you might be thinking – so, where is the wheat? Wheat, like all other grains, is a grass that goes to seed at the end of if its growing season. The seeds are grains (also called kernels, seeds, wheat berries) that are cooked whole, ground into flour, or saved and planted the next year. It’s now the fifth month of an eight month growing cycle for our einkorn, and although the wheat is just 10-inch tall grass right now, it’s bushy, healthy, and thriving. Come late July, the weather will be hot and very dry, and these plants will be 5 feet tall, golden, and ready to harvest.
Each growing season has its own story, and there is always worry until harvest is complete, worrying about plants like you would about a child or a pet. I, well we, are so fortunate to have partnered with this family owned farm many years ago, and the majority of jovial einkorn is grown here in this stupendous location. Wherever your eye wanders, the views are breathtaking, spectacular, and mind boggling. The air is clean, it’s quiet and peaceful, and just standing on one of these hills makes you feel like there is a deeper meaning to everything in life. Have you ever been to a place that makes you feel like that?
This year, our einkorn is planted in the number one spot on the farm, the highest point of the property, which is marked by a century-old oak tree. From under that tree to the right, you can actually see the two towers in the center of Siena. Einkorn suits the location too. It’s a rustic, strong plant that can grow anywhere, perfect for this hilly land, where the soil has a high content of clay and the climate is very dry. This soil must be taken care of in a natural way. Crop rotation is essential, as well as planting legumes to add nitrogen, which brings you nutritious food in the most natural way.
The whole einkorn project seems pretty surreal to me sometimes, especially when I spend a day at the farm. Setting up this whole project, especially with such a kind bunch of people, has been one of the best parts for me. It was actually pretty chilly at the farm, and at lunch, I mentioned I should have brought a heavier coat. In a second, Gian Paolo switched seats with me so I could sit closer to the heater and he brought me a sweater to wear. You’d like him if you met him, and you would love this paradise of a farm, if you could join me here for a day.