What started out as a journey into self-sufficiency through urban farming almost 6 years ago, grew into a deep love and passion for providing healthy organic vegetables for myself, friends, and family. It started out of necessity to eat and live healthy, and from the known fact that if you have space, a yard, a patio, a window, you can grow vegetables. Obviously the amount of space you have will determine what and how much you can grow, but even with limited space you can still grow something!
Early Golden Crookneck Squash - growing in clover cover crop and mulched with straw, permaculture no-till method
I knew my long term goal would be to progress into larger scale farming eventually, and I'm very thankful for the opportunity I now have to grow vegetables in an environmentally friendly way, on land that has been farmed organically for over 20 years. From sowing seeds, to harvesting crops, all the way to preparing a delicious healthy meal, it brings me great happiness to see that entire process come full circle.
Every step of the process works with nature at it's most basic and beautiful level. Providing the same quality produce that has nourished me and my loved ones, and now being able to share that with all our extended farm family is something I am really looking forward to.
Purple Top White Globe Turnip - Grown in permanent clover cover crop, companion planted near squash
Before transitioning into farming, I wanted to show others from my own experience how easy and accessible it can be to grow your own vegetables. How great would it be for everyone to have access to healthy organic vegetables and have the ability to provide for themselves and their family. It really is a huge idea, with a lot of work involved educating the public on how to grow their own food. But it is definitely an idea worth working towards! If we were all able to contribute on some level to growing our own vegetables it would connect us all more to nature and understanding why it is important to protect the earth and it's resources. And why it is so important to live more consciously overall.
I have been fortunate to have enough space to grow quite a bit of things over the years, along with the ability to implement permaculture no-till farming methods which greatly changed my outlook on how to grow vegetables in an even better way. I only ever used organic methods to begin with, but permaculture no-till was a way to take these organic methods a step further.
Cascadia Snap Pea - Growing with permanent clover cover crop, using permaculture no-till methods
By growing your own organic vegetables and contributing to your personal health and the health of the planet, you can know you are positively doing your part to make the world a better place. I think sometimes we all get caught up in big ideas on how to change the world for the better, but sometimes it is as simple as doing something small that is within your power. Starting small can be less intimidating and will open the door for you to keep adding and building onto the positive things you choose to do little by little. Before you know it, you will have built a mountain of small good actions, that have all added up to something significant. You have to start somewhere, what better place than your own health.
And if you just don't have the time or energy to grow your own vegetables, sometimes starting small begins with changing your eating habits and voting with your dollar. Supporting small local farms, using organic or sustainable practices. Choosing to actively eat healthier and treat yourself as the magnificent specimen that you are. Choosing to avoid processed foods, and instead choose a healthier lifestyle. We are all human and on our journey we can slip up and make mistakes, but remember it all starts somewhere. You have to decide to take the first step and maybe it begins with buying a few vegetables a week from a small local farm. Maybe it starts with planting a huge garden for you and your family. But the important thing is to start somewhere, and begin your positive contribution to your own life and the health of the planet.
Bee on Dutch White Clover - permanent clover cover crop blossoms attract pollinators
My journey into growing and providing vegetables actually started many years ago, when I was little and would grow all different vegetables with family. My mother is a talented ornamental flower gardener. She grew and harvested vegetables along side me as well, getting me familiar with how to do things. Now that I'm much older I can appreciate those learning lessons, still going on to this day when she takes me around her garden and names every flower.
What motivated and inspired me to farm on a large scale is being able to grow and provide healthy vegetables for more than just family and friends, and do it in a way that will enhance the land for years to come. Building and preserving the soil quality, and contributing to land conservation.
In the bigger picture, beyond just farming, I hope to educate the public about how easy it is to implement the same growing techniques in their own garden or farm.
I love growing vegetables because it's a basic need to nourish our bodies with good healthy food, and providing that in a positive way for people is a necessity. So hopefully I can inspire someone to eat organic, support a small local farm, or grown their own vegetables. Who knows, maybe even start their own farm someday or enter into the world of agriculture. Anything is possible with the right mindset plus some hard work and dedication. Start small, and start local, but the sky is the limit.