We arrived safe and sound early Monday morning New Zealand time. The weather is beautiful in summer down under and it was so good to give Chris and Judith a hug again.
We quickly went to work and Perry, Chris and I walked a few of Chris's maize or corn fields and discussed what was happening. I will talk in detail about this in future blogs but we saw improvement in the 3 years since I was here but I would like to see some more improvement. The fields look good and fairly consistant but are starting to suffer from drought stress. It's been very dry on the farm and a good 2 inch rain would solve a lot of problems. Isn't that often the case?
Chris took us to a neighbors farm who was digging onions and potatoes. This man grows 3000 tonnes or so of onions per year now and a couple thousand tonnes of potatoes. He had some huge potatoes and is tayloring size to markets. The quality looked excellent.
On Tuesday we toured the FAR plots near Hamilton where they have had more rain and the crop looked excellent. Thanks to FAR we had nice lunch after the tour with Mike Parker and a few farmers who came to greet us. It was good to see Hedrik again after 3 years, the consultant from South Africa. We could talk to these people for ours but of course are time limited.
We have since driven south and waiting on the ferry to cross the sound to the south island. Wouldn't you know the ferry broke down for the first time in many years! So we found some New Zealand gold dollars so I am writing a few notes. I just took a walk to the pier and saw some Maori construction workers diving for sea urchins for lunch. Quite a sight!
I am taking some written notes too so I will try to fill in the spots later. We love New Zealand and the people and it is so good to be in summer during our winter.
We are very blessed.