June 12, 2023
Due to a hail storm this week some of our greens took a beating and are too damaged to sell. We have a limited quantity but everything should be back to normal next week. Sorry for the inconvenience!
Our New Walk-In Cooler Would Not Exist Without Our Community.
When we found out the property where we were previously farming at in Passmore was going up for sale, our farm was at risk of going under. Luckily, one of our good customers offered us a place to live and land to farm on in Pass Creek. This was only one half of the puzzle however. Having a walk-in cooler is an essential component to any small-scale farm. And because we're a new business money is always tight.
Having to move farms meant we also needed to buy a walk-in cooler. But we couldn't afford one. We had enough to pay for half of the cooler but that was it. Here's what happened next:
The owner of Kootenay Containers allowed us to pay for half of the cooler upfront and the rest a few months later once we had the rest of the money.
A customer of ours offered us a zero-interest loan so that we could buy our cooler in full.
Farmer Matt from Linden Lane Farms and farmer Kate from Hoe Down Farm allowed us to store our veggies in their coolers while we were figuring out how to set up our cooler.
A neighbor who's a welder helped us cut a hole in the cooler so that we could install the AC unit.
Another neighbor who's an electrician helped us install the AC unit and set up a temporary energy source to power it.
Our landlord gave us insulation to fill in the cracks and helped us with some finishing touches.
We basically have zero skills outside of farming and business. And to have so many community members lend us a hand has been an incredible experience. What we're discovering is that it takes a community to create a community-based farm.
An enormous thank you to everyone who has been supporting us on our journey. We couldn't do it without you! 💛
Meet Your Farmer: Kate from Hoe Down Farm
One of our favorite aspects of our business is being able to collaborate and meet all of the local farmers here in the Kootenays. We feel its incredible important to know where your food comes from and the hard working people who grow it. That is why we would like you to meet farmer Kate from Hoe Down Farm, Pass Creek.
1. Who are you and where are you from originally?
I’m Kate Rustemeyer and I grew up in North Vancouver. I went to university in Ontario and my farm journey started there at an organic farm called Whole Village.
2. How did you end up in the Kootenays?
After that first season as an apprentice in Ontario I came back to B.C. and spent two years at OUR Ecovillage on Vancouver Island. My partner at the time and I came to the Kootenays looking for our dream town - something in the mountains with a community that had a good market for organic produce and a great ultimate frisbee team! Nelson ticked all the boxes and we quickly fell in love with the Slocan valley.
3. What inspired you to become a farmer?
I think I came to farming from a few different angles. In my 20's I became interested in social justice and environmentalism and started to think a lot about where my food was coming from. I wanted to eat in a certain way but I really couldn't afford it! I think that was one of the factors motivating me. I also have to admit that I was attracted to the romantic (and unrealistic!) lifestyle of homesteading/small scale farming.
4. What's your favourite part about being a farmer?
I love having a job that is never boring! Gardening at the scale I am at feels like a very creative thing, and each year I get another chance to create something better. I also really love working where I live, with my kid and friends around me.
5. What are your future dreams?
I would like to build my business to the point where I don’t need to rely on off season work to support myself. I’d also like to work more on the homestead side of farming, getting animals on the farm and finding ways to provide more of our own food.
Description: These purpled beets have a sweet and earth flavour. The beet greens are also edible and have a deeply earth flavour similar to chard.
Details: Sold per bunch.
Grown by Crooked Horn Farm, Winlaw.
Description: Lemon Balm is an herb from the mint family. It has both medicinal and culinary uses. When you rub a Lemon Balm leaf in-between your fingers and smell it has a powerful and lively lemon aroma. Lemon Balm is most commonly used as a tea and is known for its sedative and calming effects.
Use Lemon Balm to make tea, iced tea or as a culinary herb to add a lemon flavour to a dish.
Details: Sold in a bunch.
Description: Transform any dish from mundane to magical with our Edible Flowers! Add a splash of beauty to salads, desserts, drinks or any dish you like. Pansies and Violas have a mostly neutral taste but some may have a to mild peppermint flavour.
Details: Sold in 1 oz bag
Veggie Fun Fact: The name "Napa" is most likely derived from the Japanese word nappa - meaning leafy green.
Description: This oblong, large-headed cabbage has firmly packed, crinkly, pale green, thickly veined leaves and a white stalk.
Napa cabbage can be eaten raw in salads. It has high water content and takes on a sweet and juicy flavor when cooked, picking up other flavors from the food it's cooked with. Since it softens as well, it's frequently added to stir-fries and soups in the last stages of cooking. Napa is also commonly used for kimchi.
Detail: Each cabbage weighs about 2.5 lbs.
Grown by Crooked Horn Farm, Winlaw.
We have fresh herbs!
We now have a small quantity of thyme, oregano, winter tarragon and parsley with more on the way!
FOOD FOR THOUGHT 🍎
How Fresh Is Your Food?
When you walk into the produce section of a grocery store you often see signs that say "fresh" plastered everywhere. But how fresh is it actually?
If your fruits and vegetables have to be sprayed post-harvest with pesticides, a shiny artificial wax coating and an antifungal chemical to protect it, preserve it and prevent mold from growing on it during long distance travel, it ain’t fresh.
If your apples have to be treated with a gaseous compound called 1-methylcyclopropene and then kept in a “Controlled Atmosphere Cold Storage” so that they can last for over a year, it ain't fresh.
If your tomatoes were harvested unripe, rock hard and green and gassed with ethylene so that they turn red just before being trucked to the grocery store (known in the industry as "de-greening"), it ain't fresh.
Truly fresh food comes from local farmers. Most of your food is harvested the day before you get it. THAT'S fresh. Since local farmers use short supply chains they can wait until their food is at peak ripeness before harvesting it. This allows the flavours to fully develop. This is why grocery store food tastes so bland compared to locally-grown food. It ain’t fresh. It just looks fresh.
They may be able to trick your eyes but they'll never be able to trick your taste buds.
Order cut off time for Monday delivery to Castlegar is Saturday at midnight. If you would like to add something to your existing order simply place a second order and select “pick up / add-on” delivery option to avoid an additional delivery fee.