Patchwork Gardens is a chemical-free farm located in Dayton, Ohio. Every spring, they plant a large vegetable garden: 11 acres in the widest variety that they can manage. It is their goal to spread good food and good farming practices within the community. The farm is in its ninth year now, and growing more productive every year as they learn through experience. They grow their food without the use of any chemical fertilizers, pesticides, or herbicides. Their approach to agriculture favors hard work (diligent cultivation) and the culture of a healthy soil biology. These make for healthy plants. Patchwork Gardens plant cover-crops in the off-season and monitor their progress through yearly soil testing.
Most of what Patchwork Garden grows gets directly distributed to their favorite folks -- the hungry, healthy membership of our Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program. Members of this program receive the lion's share of each week's harvest, a box of produce picked and packed according to what's most-ready in the garden. The CSA runs mid-May -January and showcases all the variety of foods that we produce. You can also find them at farmer’s markets, and they contract with close to 15 local restaurants. Patchwork Garends is proud to be growing great vegetables and are eager to share them. To learn more about their CSA program, or to sign up, visit their website.
We sat down with them to ask a few questions about farming and what it means to them:
What crops do you most look forward to planting?
- Garlic! Since garlic over-winters it means we get to plant it in the fall and know we're already getting ourselves set for the following season. We have been able to grow some fantastic garlic which we now use for our own seed. We love being able to do that. It saves on the seed bill and ensures we're growing the best garlic.
What are some of the biggest benefits of being a pesticide and herbicide free farm?
- Knowing that your food is clean and healthy!
What vegetables are your favorite to cook?
- One of the major perks of working together at Patchwork Gardens is cooking and eating together as well. We have communal breakfast and lunch meals, and we all take turns cooking. George loves to cook with greens, Laura with garlic, Adam with Chinese cabbage, and Amber loves to use asparagus. That said, we really do like it all!
How many years have you been providing a CSA?
- 8 years.
What does the growing popularity of Farm-to-Table restaurants mean to you?
- It means a lot! We feel a real kinship for the owners/operators/chefs/cooks of restaurants such as these because we have the shared goal of putting delicious, healthy food into the stomachs of our friends, family, and community members. We really value the relationships we have with our local eateries.
What is your favorite thing about farming?
- We really do like to work hard -- moving our bodies, using our hands, sweating, solving problems, being in the sun, and breathing fresh air makes us happy! We value the collaboration and commitment that farming requires not to mention the immediate access to fantastic food.
At what Farmer's Markets can we find you?
- Yellow Springs on Saturdays in the Corner Cone lot from 7:30am - Noon.