Much of our time is spent cleaning, inspecting, inventorying, and repairing the various tools and resources of our trade. For example, the walk-in cooler and barn shelves are stripped, all surfaces bleached, and the shelf contents examined. Some contents are discarded, others neatly organized, and still others put in the “try to fix this” pile. A careful inventory of supplies we’ll need to replace or restock is taken, accumulated and sorted by priority. We know we can’t buy it all, so we create a hierarchy of need.
After reflection we begin the plodding work of remapping fields, endlessly updating gigantic spreadsheets, fine tuning formulae, counting each seed in stock and comparing our bounty against our need to determine what is to be ordered in January. Then, turning to the online seed catalogs, we calculate the best value of seed to money spent. We accrue an extensive shopping list of seeds for the year, hoping to minimize the need for emergency, mid-season purchases.