It's a hot day on Belgrade's Winterberry Farm, but the breezes play across the 40 acres of livestock pastures and organic gardens and it's cool inside the 150-year-old barn where customers measure and weigh their generous weekly CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) allotment
We receive the news rather stoically
This time of year we get a lot of visitors and longtime residents who come into the office and confess, "I love to get up in the morning and bathe in the lake. Is that OK?" I don't want to be a spoilsport but there are a lot of things that we used to do in our lakes that we have since learned were not all that good for water quality. And things that weren't that bad when one person did it are hundreds of times worse when hundreds of people do them.
The discovery was confirmed July 9. Variable leaf milfoil, an invasive plant species, has been identified in the Great Meadow Stream, which flows from North Pond into the northern end of Great Pond. The source of the milfoil has not been identified; the quantity is 12-14 clumps; the location is near the Route 225 bridge on the Great Pond side in a couple of backwater recesses. No milfoil has been identified to date in either North Pond or Great Pond.
Before starting this week's article, I downloaded a couple of pictures for inspiration. One shows an old metal culvert, crushed but still in use. The other is a classic metal culvert which has been "fixed" by being slip-lined with a smaller plastic culvert and then with expandable foam added between the two culverts in order to hold the entire contraption together. I try to look at these water conveyances as a brook trout or other form of aquatic life would. It isn't a good view! They look like barriers to me.
Let's face it, getting up really early can be a drag. When the alarm clock starts buzzing at 4:30, I get grouchy, mumbling comments like, "I'm not a farmer" or "have I lost my mind". But once I manage to shake out the cobwebs and smell the coffee perking down in the kitchen, my mood brightens. Oh how that wonderful smell can become a mood altering aroma! So now that we are actually standing up and sipping our coffee, all we have to do is take care of business and head to the lake. There are many advantages to fishing early in the morning and a lot of bonuses outside the world of fishing too.
"Meeting the people is half the fun," says Peter Clark, an Augusta native who has spent enough time in the south to really know his barbecue. "You have to reach the taste of the people who are buying from you," he states.