Life is busy, so take a
break, slow down and come visit
organic wheat, soybeans, flax, hay (great for pets!) and popcorn
available. Fresh from the farm!
Growing food is not easy. All farmers, all over the world, have to
solve some big problems to make sure their plants can thrive and grow.
They have to make sure the soil has enough nutrients to "feed" little
plants so they will grow to be big and healthy and good to eat. They
have to control bugs and other pests that can attack and eat the
plants. And they have to control weeds that can "choke" young plants by
taking up the space, sunlight and nutrients they need to grow.
Most farmers in this country are what we call "conventional farmers."
They rely on synthetic (man-made) chemicals and fertilizers to grow
their crops. These farming chemicals and fertilizers are not found in
nature, and they often build up in the environment, polluting our water
Most of these chemicals remain active for a long time . . . long after
their job is done. Although these chemicals can solve many farming
problems, some of them are not healthy for the environment or for
What's Different about Organic Farmers?
As organic farmers, we grow food differently from conventional farmers
because we choose to use nature's ways of solving farming problems. We
grow plants without herbicides (weed killers) or fumigants (soil
sterilizers). All of our fertilizer (plant food) is natural. Sometimes
we do use some insecticides (insect killers) or fungicides (fungus
killers), but only special ones that are approved for organic farming.
And we use them less often than conventional farmers use chemicals on
their crops. Substances approved for organic farming are usually made
from natural ingredients and are less harmful to people, animals, and
the environment. It takes a little more effort to grow food
organically, but it is a good way to grow healthy, strong plants.
To enrich the soil, organic farmers plant cover crops, such as bell
beans and hairy vetch, that make the soil richer as they grow and when
they are tilled under. We also use compost, a natural form of
fertilizer that comes from different materials that have rotted away
and broken down. We keep pests and diseases away by crop rotation,
which means switching the location of plants each season. We also use
natural insect repellents, and bring in good bugs that like to eat bad
bugs. We do most of our weeding with tractors and also by hand with
tools like hoes.
Even though it takes a little more work, we think farming organically
is the healthiest choice. Organic farming helps keep our air, soil,
water and food supply clean. We also provide our farm workers and
neighbors with a healthier environment. Organic farming helps make
healthy food and a healthy planet!