We’ve just got the website up but we are still working out the glitches so I’d like to take this opportunity to tell you a little bit about who were are and how we grow. My husband and I both worked for the U.S.F.S as wildland firefighters and after we got married, bought our home, and started a family I decided to end my career as a firefighter and pursue farming. My husband is currently the Fire Division Chief for the Monterey Ranger District of the Los Padres National Forest.
We bought our home (built in 2007) & property in 2010 which is located in the north east corner of the Jardine community. It’s a rural residential track of 1 and 2 acre parcels surrounded by vineyard and a small regional airport. Our two acres of rolling hills backs up against oaks and vineyards. Our soil type is mainly sandy loam and I laugh when people say we are cursed with clay because although it’s there, it’s not that bad, and actually works to our advantage as farmers! We have an ephemeral creek that runs north and into the Estrella River. When we moved in the property there was a 500 acre grazing plot to our east, and the property to the north east was an established vineyard. Now another vineyard is being put in to our east. I’ve always been a gardener being raised in Lockwood and I was raised with a garden living out in the country, so having fruit trees, berries, nuts, and a garden was a given. I got to work almost immediately setting up drip, getting my potted plants on timer and inspecting the soil all over the property.
Within my first year in the home with a two year old and giving birth to our second child, I was able to start and run a 30′ x 15′ garden, plant 10 fruit trees and transplant blackberry bushes. Family, friends and more and more people kept coming to me saying, “Now that you have more room you should grow!”
Finding out that both our children would have special needs re-affirmed our decision to have me stay at home and commit to a small business. My daughter was born with mild hearing loss so from day one we had teachers from the County in home, working with her. It was then that several educators brought things to our attention that we were already questioning about our two year old son. After lots of testing our two year old son was diagnosed with Autism. That is another post for another day! Farming at home has allowed me to prioritize my children’s needs while still being able to run a small business.
There has been such a huge learning curve not only farming and homesteading but choosing to be sustainable. Farming has been one of the most fulfilling and rewarding ventures of my life. From working with beehives, to owning chickens, utilizing grazing animals and building a greenhouse, we are growing and learning every day! We started selling at The Country Farm and Craft Farmer’s Markets in 2012 and attend the market March through November. In 2013 I achieved my Certified Naturally Grown status which is a natural grassroots certification process (like organic) for small family farms across the United States. The guidelines are built off of the National Organic Program’s. We also do regular and/or weekly orders with restaurants, bed & breakfasts, and vineyards all over North County SLO. We pride ourselves and are well known for our many unique tomato varieties that I grow ALL from seed. Our main focus is to provide fresh natural seasonal produce to our community and raise awareness of the values of growing organic foods. Along the way other things are starting to evolve and we look forward to working with our community to continue to be able to provide food from our home to others.