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Archive | Meet an Eco-Farmer

Meet an Eco-Farmer: Restoration Farm

Restoration Farm Eco-FarmersWhy did you begin farming?

We teach a class called “The Dream Giver,” and while meeting with a couple who had a dream of establishing an organic farm, we caught the dream. Our dream was different in that we wanted to grow crops that no other farms in the area were growing. Our choice was heirloom tomatoes, herbs and vegetables.

Have you always been an ecofarmer, or did you make a change?

Yes. We have chosen to grow our products completely chemical-free, and that includes any organic chemicals that we could use.

What was the biggest hurdle you have overcome?

We are in our 60s so the biggest hurdle is maintaining the energy to do chemical-free farming. The first big hurdle was not listening to the people who said we couldn’t do this at our age, or because we had never farmed before.

What do you enjoy most about farming?

We enjoy taking land that was in need of being restored and working to make it productive. We enjoy watching what we have sown break through that restored soil and become a healthy plant that is good for people to eat. It is really satisfying to have customers tell us how great our microgreens, vegetables and tomatoes taste.

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Meet an Eco-Farmer: Lupine Knoll Farm

Lupine Knoll Farm

Jonathan Spero, Lupine Knoll Farm

Why did you begin farming?

I like working in the dirt. I like being outside physically working, and I like the quiet of the field. I began plant breeding because it is a way a person working in the dirt can make a lasting difference and contribute to the quality and diversity of the food supply for many people.

Have you always been an ecofarmer, or did you make a change?

I have always used organic practices.

What was the biggest hurdle you have overcome?

Finding land to farm. It took until I was almost 50 years old.

What do you enjoy most about farming?

I like physical work outdoors. I like mud between my toes. I like producing high-quality food and new seed that will produce more high-quality food, and that open source will mean others can reproduce that food and those seeds into the future. Looking to create new open-pollinated varieties of sweet corn, I planted a 100-foot row of each of 14 sugary enhanced f1 hybrids and picked a favorite. Eight generations later, Top Hat, one of my first releases, was selected out of Tuxedo, one of those 14. Tuxana (white corn) Festivity (multi-color corn) and Ana Lee (yellow corn) all come from a cross between Tuxedo and an Anasazi landrace corn. Continue Reading →

Meet an Eco-Farmer: Feral Heart Farm

Feral Heart Farm Eco-Farmer

Aaron Dinwoodie, Feral Heart Farm

Why did you begin farming?

To learn how to grow my own food and share that skill with others.

Have you always been an ecofarmer, or did you make a change?

Yes, I’ve always been an ecofarmer since I started farming.

What was the biggest hurdle you have overcome?

Accessing quality farmland and water.

What do you enjoy most about farming?

That’s hard; there are so many things, I don’t like to play favorites. The thing I enjoy most about farming is growing seed to seed, seeing plant crops live out their full life cycles. In other words, seed saving.

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Meet an Eco-Farmer: Francis Flowers and Herbs Farm

Francis Flowers and Herbs Farm Eco-Farmer

Earcine Evans, Francis Flowers and Herbs Farm

Why did you begin farming?

My family farmed growing up. I returned to the land 12 years ago to be nourished and renewed after being away for such a long time. In my time away I became a cosmetologist, owned a beauty salon and nearly lost my life to chemical poisons, which led to my personal journey to rediscover the knowledge that my grandmother had while raising me. Thus, Pure Cine All Natural Hair and Skin Care was born.

Have you always been an eco-farmer, or did you make a change?

Yes, I farmed with organic and biodynamic farmers in the beginning to learn about methods that would lead to well-stewarded land and good health for myself and others. I’ve never used any chemical or industrial pesticides, fungicides or herbicides on my land.

What do you enjoy most about farming?

I love being so closely connected with nature, memories of my ancestors and a way of life that honors my predecessors and heals both the heart and mind. Continue Reading →

Meet an Eco-Farmer: King’s Crossing Farm

King's Crossing Farm Eco-Farmer

Jimma & John Byrd, King’s Crossing Farm

Why did you begin farming?

My family has owned the land for many years. We wanted to use an organic system of agriculture to produce pecans. It’s very important to us to know how our food is grown, so we grow our own.

Have you always been an eco-farmer, or did you make a change?

From the time we took over the family farm we have always used organic methods.

What was the biggest hurdle you have overcome?

Switching from conventional to solar power for irrigation and personal use.

What do you enjoy most about farming?

Great expectations for the next pecan crop and eating healthy food year-round.

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Meet an Eco-Farmer: Rama Farm

Rama Farm Eco-Farmer

Marilynn Lynn, Rama Farm

Why did you begin farming?

As a young child I recognized that I was happiest when pulling weeds or picking backyard raspberries. This understanding inspired a life-long pursuit of back-to-the land self-sufficiency.

Have you always been an eco-farmer, or did you make a change?

If the definition of eco-farmer is one who works with nature instead of against her than that would apply to our farming philosophy since the beginning.

What do you enjoy most about farming?

There is joy in every aspect of farming. Highlights include watching a new customer’s surprise when they bite into a peach and juice runs down their chin, seeing the miracle of alpaca births and devotion of the dams, picking a ripe piece of fruit that you have cared for since it was a tiny bud in an unopened flower, and being surrounded by the authenticity of plants and animals. Continue Reading →