Well, as soon as I get the technology figured out, I’ll be posting pictures of Spring at Clover Wreath. The greenhouse is half full of plants just waiting for the weather to settle its mind.

Cherokee Purple Tomatoes are definitely out in front of the other plants, continuing to grow despite the cold. And our own Clover Wreath Farm’s Cherokee Purple seed is even more determined. It is true, seed that comes from your own field or garden will give you plants that are adapting to your soil, weather, pest problems, and etc.

We sold at the Farmers’ Market (Chattanooga’s South Side- Main and Williams, Wednesdays 4-5 p.m.)  Our CSA starts in eight weeks. (June 4th) It is most exciting time of the year but also the most nerve wracking.

We are draining our pastures and gardens, digging new ditches and the like to try to get things dry enough to plant. (You can seriously mess up your soil if you start mucking about in it.)

More pictures and videos of the farm to come soon…

Breann

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We are thrilled to be entering our fourth CSA season! Improving soils, improving stock, improving community and environment.

Please let me know if you want to become part of the Clover Wreath CSA!

Breann

Hello everyone! You expressed an interest in being members of the 2011 CSA.

The cost is $378, unless you pass the entire balance when the payments are due in January. In the latter case, your are charges $358. Less bookkeeping for me, so less charge for you.

A deposit of $100 in required to hold your spot.

I need to order seeds and supplies in January, so every early payment is appreciated.

Otherwise, 3 payments are due January 1, March 1, and May1.
I apologize but our Dairy CSA is full. And the feed cost is just to high to be able to sell eggs to the public again.

Pick ups will be half in Chattanooga at our Main Street Market Wednesdays 4-6 p.m. and with the other half will pick up at Clover Wreath on Saturday 10-12 p.m.

Contact me directly if you need the address for mailing a check.

If the bees do well, you will also get a jar of honey to go with your vegetables this summer.

Remember to act fast, the CSA is almost full now!

In Good Eating,
Breann

The 15th Annual Harvest Festival

A Biodynamic

Celebration October 1-3, 2010

Long Hungry Creek Farm •Red Boiling Springs, TN Our theme this year is good soil with a focus on horn manure. Many biodynamic gardeners have seen a darker color soil and better tilth after using horn manure, referred to as the ‘500 preparation’. We’ll stuff horns and give away the 500 preparation we made last year. There will be workshops on biodynamics, holistic management, beekeeping, radionics, homeopathy, jam-making, raw foods, and more.

Feel the difference wholesome food makes in your body and learn to grow it yourself. Genuine health begins in the soil. This annual festival attracts a wide array of people with gifts to share, and ample time is allowed for one on one discussion with workshop leaders throughout the weekend.

A collection of professional biodynamic gardeners, farmers, chefs, and healers will inspire your first hand relationship with quality soil, food, and overall vitality.

This year we will enjoy presentations and farm reports from a variety of friends including:

Lloyd Nelson, Philip Lyvers and Laura Riccardi, Jennifer Gleason, Tyler Brown, Dr. Verl Hunter, Jason Harris, Richard Monet, Lorraine Cahill,

Greg Bran, Dennis Limon, Eric and Cher Smith, Laura Button, Mark Trela, and more.

There will be children’s story times, herb walks, farmy women’s circles, farm-intern chats, CSA news, and plenty of talking about health, biodynamics, homesteading, food, vegetables, fruits and livestock.

SCHEDULE

Friday

1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Afternoon Workshops

4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Reception and Registration

6 p.m. Biodynamic Banquet

7:30 p.m. Looking at 500 – bring yours

Saturday

8 a.m. Breakfast

9 to 11 a.m. Workshops

12 p.m. Lunch and garden party

2 to 4 p.m. Workshops

5 p.m. Circle together

6:30 p.m. Biodynamic Banquet

7:30 p.m. Talent Show

9:00 p.m. Bonfire and Barn Dance

Sunday

8 a.m. Breakfast

9 a.m. We share our favorite passages from Steiner’s Agriculture Course.

11 a.m. Q&A with workshop leaders

12 p.m. Lunch

2 p.m. Farm tours –Long Hungry Creek Farm

Or Bugtussle Farm – pastured poultry and grazing

6 p.m. Dinner and Good-byes at the farm

Festival Details

Bring your homegrown food to contribute to meals, your crafts and products to sell or trade, and your enthusiasm for making a spirited event run smoothly. Detailed directions and more information is available on-line, or by request: http://www.barefootfarmer.com, Jeff@barefootfarmer.com or call 615-699-4676. Volunteer workers are welcomed and encouraged, and no one will be turned away for financial reasons. Camp sites are available at Long Hungry Creek Farm at no extra cost. We do not offer power or water hook-ups. See http://www.rbstn.com for hotel lodging. This is a family event and we have a swimming hole, hiking trails, and a cave for outdoor enjoyment. Please, NO dogs.

Conference fees:

$125.00 for the weekend, paid at the door;

$100.00 if pre-registered by September 10th;

otherwise, $50.00 per day

Children are free

Please send registration check to:

Jeff Poppen

C/O Long Hungry Creek Farm

P.O. Box 163

Red Boiling Springs, TN 37150

We are grateful for the support of the Biodynamic Association, whose national gathering is happening this same weekend in upstate New York. See http://www.biodynamics.com for more information. Biodynamics was initiated in 1924 when Dr. Rudolf Steiner recommended we farm with compost, not artificial fertilizers, because the latter would tend to make our food less nutritious and our thinking and feeling more materialistic. Along with practical methods for integrating soil, plants, and animals into a self-sustaining farm, biodynamic gardeners work with spiritual elements by using homeopathic preparations to create compost, high quality produce, and a pleasant atmosphere.

Dear Supporters,
I am excited to announce the grant awarded to our Sustainable Ag Farmers’ Association and Co-op.
To quote my husband: “Gaining Ground’s funding support for our regional farmer’s cooperative will help smaller production farmers like myself learn from each other, access resources and tap into larger outlets to share our products with consumers.”
Butch is now spending a year investigating different methods and business practices used by other Farmers’ Associations while putting some things in place to benefit farmers and the Chattanooga area.
You can find out more about the grants here:
http://chattanoogan.com/articles/article_176152.asp
http://chattarati.com/metro/business/2010/5/25/gaining-ground-farm-market/
So for the next year, we are going to be focusing on the success of the Farmers’ Association and Co-op. I can think of no better way to ensure good food for everyone in our area in the long term.
I have cut back on the gardens and I will only be doing one market for this season. I won’t be doing a Farmstand or pick ups from our farm this season.
I am very grateful to Dave Waters of River Ridge Farms, who tilled our gardens this year. (Dave has delicious chicken, pork, and beef for sale at the Main St Farmers’ Market…) And to my uncle, Garry Murray, who fixed our tractor which was in two pieces at plowing time.

We will not have produce of a significant amount until later in June. It was a late start at best this year. We will keep everyone updated as the crops come in.

Hello all!
I hope this finds you enjoying Spring in the finest way!
I am encouraging some of our wonderful members to consider becoming CSA members of The Greenway Table here in Cleveland. For more information: http://www.thegreenwaytable.org
This is a great way to support our community and get great food!
At your convenience, please email me with your email, phone number, and address. A Facebook message hacked into our computers and has caused quite a bit of file corruption. We apologize for the inconvenience. Thank you for your support of health, your community, and the environment through local, sustainable agriculture!
Breann

The debate on food safety is heating up in Congress! The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP) is planning to mark up S. 510, the Senate version of the draconian House food safety bill (H.R. 2749). This is a major step towards passing the bill. Big Ag and Big Food have distributed melamine-contaminated milk from China and salmonella-contaminated peppers from Mexico. Yet Congress hasn’t gotten the message that they need to solve the real problems – the centralized food distribution system and imported foods – and not regulate our local food sources out of business. We need your help to make them listen! Please read through the problems with the bill and then call your Senators (details below).

 PROBLEMS WITH THE BILL

 1. The bill applies to all food, not just food in interstate commerce. On its face, the bill applies to any farm or food producer, regardless of location, size, or scope of distribution. If the intent truly is to limit the bill to food that is crossing state lines, then it must be amended. And even then, the bill would still negatively impact small farmers and food processors who live near state lines and who cross state lines to reach local farmers markets and co-ops.

 2. The major foodborne illness outbreaks and recalls have all been caused by the large, industrial food system. Small, local food producers have not contributed to the highly publicized outbreaks. Yet S. 510 subjects the small, local food system to the same, broad federal regulatory oversight that would apply to the industrial food system.

3. FDA regulation of local food processors is unnecessary and overly burdensome. Federal regulations may be needed for industrial, large-scale processing facilities that source raw ingredients from multiple locations (sometimes imported from other countries) and ship their products across the country, but federal regulation is overkill for small, local processors. Existing state and local public health laws are enough for local food sources.

4. Relying on HACCP will harm small processors. S. 510 applies a complex and burdensome Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) system to even the smallest local food processors. Although HACCP may be good in theory a good theory for large, complex facilities, USDA’s implementation of HACCP, with its requirements to develop and maintain extensive records, has already proven to be an overwhelming burden for a significant number of small, regional meat processors across the country. In the meat industry, HACCP has substituted paperwork review for independent inspections of large meatpacking plants, while sanctioning small processors for paperwork violations that posed no health threat. Applying a HACCP system to small, local foods processors could drive them out of business, reducing consumers’ options to buy fresh, local foods

5. FDA does not belong on the farm. S. 510 calls for FDA regulation of how farms grow and harvest produce. Given the agency’s track record, it is likely that the regulations will discriminate against small, organic, and diversified farms. The House version of the bill directs FDA to consider the impact of its rulemaking on small-scale and diversified farms, but there are no enforceable limits or protections for small diversified and organic farms from inappropriate and burdensome federal rules.

6. S. 510 favors foreign farms and producers over domestic. The bill creates incentives for retailers to import more food from other countries, because it burdens family farms and small business and because it will be practically impossible to hold foreign food facilities to the same standards and inspections. The bill will create a considerable competitive disadvantage for ALL U.S. agriculture and food production (see analysis at http://ftcldf.org/news/news-20Oct2009-2.html ).

ACTION TO TAKE: 1. Contact both of your U.S. Senators. Ask to speak to the staffer who handles food safety issues and if you are able to speak to them rely on the talking points above to explain the problems with the bill. If you get their voice mail, leave this message: “I am a resident of _____. I am opposed to S. 510 because it will place unnecessary and burdensome regulations on our small farms and local food processors. Contrary to FDA’s testimony, the bill is not limited to food in interstate commerce. In addition, it does not address the root cause of foodborne illnesses, i.e., a centralized food system, and it will impact small and local producers. I urge Senator __ to take every action possible to stop unlimited FDA power from destroying our local food sources. Please call me back at _______” To find contact information for your Senators, go to http://www.congress.org or call the Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121. 2. Also contact the Chair and Ranking Member of the HELP Committee: Chairman Harkin, (p): 202-224-0767, (f): 202-224-5128 Senator Enzi, Ranking Member, (p): 202-224-6770