August in East Tennessee has been hotter and drier than we have had in years. Hopefully this heat and dry weather will not have a negative effect on the beautiful changing of leaves that signals fall is just around the corner. These days we yearn for the rain that plagued many local farmers last spring. The teens that entered our program in January that affectionately refer to themselves as the “Peculiar Pickles. These novice farmers spend their first year exploring the farm, studying planting, identifying and appropriate use of tools, etc. . In early spring as they began working on their gardens, Mother Nature delivered copious amounts of rain to our area complicating the areas to be planted. This obstacle proved to be an additional learning opportunity and an immediate need for adaptation.