Since moving to North Carolina almost two years ago, my relationship with food and the earth, for that matter, has deepened. Living here, I've had the opportunity to grow organic vegetables and have been blessed with incredible access to local food at farmer's markets. This past weekend, I was able to get a little closer to the local food I love so much by participating in the Know Your Farms Tour
, a two day event that celebrates 32 local farms. Visitors choose their route and set off on a self-guided local food adventure.
My favorite friends and adorable little family, the Huxtables (yes, like the Cosby's except vegetarians), and I hopped in their fuel efficient vehicle and took the day to tour Coldwater Creek Farms
, Laughing Owl Farms and the Elma C. Lomax Incubator Farm.
I was particularly interested in Coldwater Creek Farm since I see Brad Hinckley, co-owner and farmer, weekly at the Davidson Farmer's Market
. I buy vegetables from Brad and we talk compost and organic practices on the regular. I've even made a few farming funnies and got him to chuckle. It was a treat to see his farm, where the magic and ah-mazing garlic happens. It was also reassuring to know that all organic farmers have to wrestle with pesky weeds. I thought it was just me, whew!
Next up was Laughing Owl Farms, a small detour for the sake of the little one we had with us. She wanted to see animals and much to the chagrin of her vegetarian parents, we obliged.
The little one
Here are a few shots of the residents including Tom the Turkey who was happy to show me around the farm.
Know what else? I ran into local foodie and easy, breezy blogger, Kelly Davis of Foodie Fresh
at Laughing Owl. Small world.
It's always fun to meet your digital acquaintances in person, especially when they are as nice as they appear online. You can check out Kelly's post on the tour here
Our last stop was the Elma C. Lomax Incubator Farm, an amazing project developed by Cabarrus County and the NC Cooperative Extension. The project was designed to grow the local, ORGANIC, farming community by investing in the hands-on education of new farmers. The cooperative 30-acre farm assists aspiring farmers by providing plots of land for them to practice growing organically. Each farmer is allowed to sell at the local markets and share the wealth while getting an education. I have had some delicious purple potatoes from here.
I also got a few new reading recommendations from our lovely tour guide (I totally spaced on his name, shame on me)...The New Organic Grower
by Eliot ColemanGardening at the Dragons Gate
by Wendy JohnsonThe New Self-Sufficient Gardener
by John Seymour
and this blog
by Debbie Roos
Touring the farms was one of the most exciting things I've done since living here, honestly. I love being with like-minded individuals who share in something as intimate as the growing and sharing of honest to goodness food. I am a forever fan of the Know Your Farms Tour.