FARM NEWSAs this farm tour season ends for 2016, I paused to think about the thousands of people who have come to our farms this year. We’ve had kids with mouths open in surprise when they see a giant field of heirloom tomatoes. People with sticky, red mouths from all the strawberries they ate have walked our land. People dancing to a band and breathing deep the farm’s night air were here too.
We have hosted everyone from school children to farmers from Japan to the PBS television program “Moveable Feast.”
Bringing school groups out to the farm really gives us a sense that we are teaching the generation about the food system. They will pick vegetables and learn about agriculture in their county and how we are all connected to each other. I farm, you eat our food, we employ people who then spend their dollars in our community. It’s a comforting, tight circle of life.
We’ve had some big parties too – Our NorCal annual heirloom tomato festival, Capay Tomato, was thankfully not as hot this year, and we had a full farm that night for camping. We hosted Outstanding the Field, the famous farm-to-table dinner, for our 5th year, and we reveled in the beauty of Suzie’s Farm, our farm partner in San Diego. Our annual Capay Crush brought local wineries to our farm not to mention the mobile pizza oven that was a big hit.
We continued our farm tours in Bardsdale, our small farm about an hour outside of Los Angeles. This is the farm that we converted to organic land (no synthetic pesticides or fertilizers for three years). We hosted a lecturer who talked about “urban homesteading” with tips on living a zero-waste life, gardening tricks and composting techniques. Drake’s Family Farm sampled wonderful goat cheeses for farm guests. The farm just has avocados and oranges now, but we have just planted a lemon orchard.
Whether it was a first grader coming to a farm with her school or a foodie eating a fancy dinner here, we welcomed them all, grateful for their interest in our farm and happy that the food system is changing for the better by connecting people with the land that grows their food. Please visit us next spring, summer and fall when our farm events start again.