About a year-and-a-half ago I handed off the garden general manager job. I continued "mini-farming," but also joined a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture share) or farm share. This year we decided just to use a farm share.
We joined Green Gardens Community Farm (GG) located in Battle Creek. There are several share plans depending on your need. In our two-person household, we chose the least expensive "pint" size at $300.
Each Saturday morning May through Thanksgiving, GG delivers produce to the nearby Kalamazoo Farmers Market. You chose what you want, like at a grocery store, except this is fresh picked and organic. The amount with farm share discount is deducted from the initial payment. Easy-peasy and always a nice, healthy variety.
GG also has a store at the farm that is open Mon-Wed afternoons. All their produce is for sale, plus pork, eggs, some dairy products, local ferments, and honey.
A while back farmers Trent, Ruthie, and little Jorah May invited all their CSA shareholders to a dinner at the farm and a tour of the greenhouses and fields.
We started in a hoop-style greenhouse where, incidentally, they also host weddings and other events. We had time to meet and chat with other share-mates.
Jorah played with a black cat that wandered nearby. The cat's name is May (maybe named after Jorah's middle name or the other way around).
After the leisurely meal, Farmer Trent gave a quick preview and led a walking tour around the farm. Here he is with that ever glowing smile.
Our walk through the gardens started with a look at the fields and recently planted apple and pear orchard (to the right below). The trees should bear fruit next year for shareholders. Jorah on her pink mini-bike and the kitty followed the troops.
Along the edge of the fields were wild flowers including these red clover.
I recalled as a kid sucking the individual little pink spikies and they were so sweet. So I just had to try them today. They were still as sweet as I remembered. Brought back wonderful kid memories. Thoughts of hunting for 4-leaf clovers and making daisy chains.
We passed by the outdoor gathering area. Maybe wedding ceremonies are held here or nature lectures.
We saw other greenhouses with colorful varieties of lettuce, tomatoes in many sizes and types, and starter plant area. Everything impressive!
There was lots more to see including a greenhouse filled with sunflowers and zinnias.
The kitty must have known we were cat lovers. She followed Mike and I all the way to our car. If she would have hopped in, we may have been tempted to cat-nap her. But she preferred to find a sun spot on the roof of another car.
It was a fine and fun evening. A big thanks to our farmer hosts.
Read more about Green Gardens at: http://www.greengardensfarm.com. We give it two thumbs up!