Ash Wednesday Reflection on the Farm

Below is a beautiful Ash Wednesday reflection from our Farm Educator and CSA Coordinator Erynn Smith:

Today we tilled under our first plantings on our new farm in Santa Paula.  We moved onto our land at the end of August and planted immediately.  That first section held our hard planning work, our hopes for success on our new land, our excitement and big fears, our first major challenge with the Bagrada Bug infestation that wiped out all our brassica plants.  It also held our first harvests for your CSA boxes.  Our first carrot, lettuce, chard, and beet harvests for Conjeo Valley and Ventura Unified School Districts.  It was where we realized we could really do Join the Farm! in Santa Paula.  Now we’re done harvesting in that section, have moved on to the next planting that is coming in for harvest, and today tilled the remaining plants back into the soil.

On this Ash Wednesday, the ashes remind me of being of ash, soil, of this rich Earth, to which I will return.  I contemplated this as I saw and remembered all that was of our first plantings and saw them return to ash, soil, this rich Earth.  Returning, carrying nutrients and richness back into the soil, and carrying our work, love, challenges, and hope. 


  1. Dear Erynn,
    Thank you again for your insights, passion and investment in the Join The Farm Project. How fitting is your Ash Wednesday reflection here. It was wonderful to be at Novella Carpenter’s presentation at the Camarillo Library yesterday and to be in the company of several of our farming family. Thank you for getting out the word, for successfully networking and attracting organizations and individuals to our CSA and Farm to School to Home programs.
    I believe these are the “building the soil” days of a very significant harvest.
    Peace be with you always,

  2. Dear Aminah,
    Having you at the Farmhouse and a part of the Abundant Table/Join The Farm family is an unexpected blessing. Your love for life and learning, your sincerity and spiritual sensitivities/quests are inspiring to us all. Thank you for your work, your questions, your many contributions to the larger community of faith. Your presence has deepened and broadened my experience of the family of God/Allah.
    Peace be with you always,

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