The Wine Country Online

The Color of Harvest Past

Photo Essay by Jack Burton

Winter in Sonoma County is just a brief interlude between December's last Brussels sprouts and the first asparagus in March. We get the occasional frost, a rare hard freeze, and usually have the opportunity to see a light dusting of snow 'way up on Geyser Peak or Mount St. Helena. It is nice to see the snow a day or few out of the year, but for me   a guy originally from Michigan   that's enough. I'm happy down here in the valleys with the lovely winter's citrus crop, and the vines all naked waiting for spring.

  Jack Burton   

"See you next spring!"

Market notes from Renee Kiff:

November frost resulted in most of the Healdsburg Farmers' Market growers concluding their season a number of weeks earlier than usual this year. Those well-planned, with winter crops of cabbages, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and squash, are able to carry over to the remaining markets year-round in Sonoma County. Those markets are Sonoma Valley and Santa Rosa Vet Memorial.

Why does our Healdsburg market close for the winter? We are blessed with an amazing climate and small, specialty crop farms located within a radius of less than eight miles of our market. Although we have a few growers from outside this area, our heaviest reliance is upon these local growers. Winter weather during the months of December, January, March sends most of us indoors to pore over seed catalogs, repair tools, loosen up the seed starter mix, and put up our muddy feet.

April brings planting again, after frost danger has passed. Market opens again the first Saturday of May, 2001.