By David M. Masumoto
A lyrical, sensuous and carefully engrossing memoir of 1 severe 12 months within the lifetime of an natural peach farmer, Epitaph for a Peach is "a pleasant narrative . . . with poetic aptitude and a feeling of humor" (Library Journal).
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Additional info for Epitaph for a Peach: Four Seasons on My Family Farm
A few summers ago I was preparing the ground for the coming fall and dormant season. Many farmers make a final pass through their fields, disking in the last of the summer weeds, turning the earth over for winter beds. In one row I discovered a small stand of Bermuda growing in the middle of the row, thick and matted. It looked like a putting green, a manicured oasis in the rough. I made a pass over it with the disk, and the blades simply bounced on the turf. I stopped, backed up, and made another pass.
Some weeds were indeed abunai, and I realize they can remain dangerous for my peaches, my farm, my family—my dreams. Cooking Bermuda I found a way to kill Bermuda weeds without an herbicide or destroying my back. All it requires are a tractor, fuel, and time. Farmers may have tractors and fuel, but time is becoming increasingly rare. I discovered this system quite by accident. In one block of vines where I did not use herbicides, I had to experiment with David Mas Masumoto / 41 alternatives in order to control a small patch of Bermuda.
Roots extend deep into an underground tangled mass beyond my sight. I can’t count the thousands of shovelfuls of earth I have moved in my life. But I like to think of the thousands that lie in my future, if I am fortunate. Spring irrigation brings life to the orchards and vineyards. Peaches ripen and the scent of bloom lingers in the air.
Epitaph for a Peach: Four Seasons on My Family Farm by David M. Masumoto