War Against Weeds

Right now, we’re staging an all-out assault on the weeds. When the crew and I are not harvesting, we’re weeding. For extra help, I’m calling in favors, offering blandishments, extending veiled threats. Like a general, I’m reviewing my tactics and deciding where to apply my resources to the best advantage: Where is the insurgency most serious? Which assets are most important? Where is the battle already lost? And where can it yet be won?

I know I need to be careful when using martial imagery when describing my work on the farm. As I’ve written elsewhere, my relationship to this place is more of a dance than a fight. But in this case, I think, the analogy rings true. These weeds, by robbing the crops of light, moisture, and soil fertility, do threaten the harvest. How numerous they are outstrips my resources to fight them all. So victory here depends on determination and thoughtful tactics.

And the clock is ticking. On the one hand, if these crops are going to have time to bear a good harvest before the end of the season, they need to get free of the weeds now. And on the other hand, as the harvest ramps up, we have less time for everything else, weeding included. So, this week, we fight on.