Today, we are starting our new Farm Blog to share projects and plans. We know Facebook and Twitter are not everyone’s cup of tea and that, in many ways the world is getting less connected. We hope these little farm letters will be a way for us to reconnect and bring you back to the farm.
Even as the tule fog rolls over the hills as it does each January, the farm remains very busy. We’re planting fruit trees, buying seeds and making needed repairs. We’re cutting back last year’s gardens to inspire new growth. Nature rests while the cold weather sweeps across the farm. And yet, the soil is alive and vibrant. Its this foundation of the farm that makes us want to try new things and bring people here to learn. And so, we are starting this spring with a new lecture series to teach and cultivate ideas. We’ve named our new venture FarmSchool and this is the first of many educational experiences being developed for the farm
Our first lecture is titled FarmSchool: Grazing on Grasslands 101. This all day event will feature two amazing speakers who advocate for the importance of cattle grazing to restore our grasslands and rich soils. We welcome Allan Savory, founder of the Savory Institute and the man behind holistic management. Nicolette Hahn Niman, author, environmental attorney and rancher, will be discussing the topic of her new book, Defending Beef. You can discover more about the conference by following this link
Next up in May is our second Vintage and Antique Marketplace and Farmers Market. We are excited about creating Agro Tourism in our valley in a gently way. Pleasants Valley Road is a hidden gem in the middle of N. California surround by rolling hills. May 30th from 8 am – 4p.m Over 20 antique dealers will set up displays under the oak trees, framed by the lavender gardens.. Local farmers from our region will be here with the bounty of their fields. And, of course, delicious food to eat in the olive orchard. This country fair is about reconnecting with your neighbors and friends. Laughing under the trees and making memories. Come step back in time with us.
Admission is $5 per person
Kids under 15 are free
Until our next letter
Soul Food Farm
April 18, 2012
Dear Former CSA Friends and Fans,
I wanted to write and just touch base with all of you and talk about good news.It has been almost 10 months since we shut down Soul Food Farm as a pastured chicken and egg farm After the last CSA delivery
the winter settled in leaving me time to mull over the odyssey of the last ten years. At first it felt like such a failure. A train wreck of ideas and dreams. Then January rolled along with its cold days and endless cups of coffee. With hours to think and to cold to work outside, something began to settle and ideas started to peculate again. Fix up the house? travel? build a better farm?
In February I went to Haiti with Partners of the America’s, a US AID project. They needed a chicken expert and I had the time, so I went for two weeks. There are farmers in Haiti who are
looking at chickens as a source of income and food. Of course they are having the same issues that our little farm had. Food cost, labor, disease and finding markets. I don’t know how helpful I was, Haiti is such a broken country. But, I did come home with a new sense of purpose and the understanding that giving up isn’t an option for so many people. What the hell was I thinking wallowing in self pity.
The last 10 months has given Eric and I a chance to get back on our feet and start creating the farm we have held in our hearts all these years. The house is repainted and redecorated and goes up as a vacation rental, farm stay in three weeks. I have moved into my little office and it is the prettiest most charming space I have ever lived in. Eric is working again as an Engineer and living in a 100 year old house built by my great grandmother in San Francisco. He comes home on the weekends and says how good everything looks.
It took several month to sell or give away chicken equipment and chickens, which lead us to start cleaning out years of stuff we just don’t need anymore. We kept 100 chickens and are experimenting with feeding them less processed feed and more seeds, vegetables and fruits. Plus we decided to eliminate soy from their diet and now
feed them hemp seeds for protein. We are selling eggs from the farm these days, plus our lavender essential oil and the culinary salts. If any off you still come by Vacaville please stop in and pick
up some eggs. I know many of you “gifted” me your balance, but I would be so happy to know you had eggs again from the little fridge in the driveway. Just leave me a note in case I miss you. I think you could use your old balance. Just
contact me and I’ll look it up and see what you have. I can handle that if it means good eggs on
We also rent out space to another farmer named Michael Hoolihan who cultivates 5 acres and grows vegetables at Soul Food.
We are only selling from the farm,! The days of running around are over, but think about shopping your farm this summer.
More changes are in the works but for
now this seems like enough news. We miss you all and hope that you have new sources for good protein. We still need more farmers even if it is challenging.
Excuse all the typos and such. You know writing is not my forte.