Life is always busy at Marvellous Edibles Farm. Planning, planting, weeding, harvesting, making preserves, making pickles. The list is endless. Sometimes, we step back and try to figure out how to have a few minutes without feeling guilty that we are in fact taking a break!
We started farming seriously about 15 years ago, after we bought our present farm property two years prior with the intention that we were going to use it for a few weekends away from our other, all consuming, career of restaurant ownership. Thinking that even if we used the place for just a few days a year, it was still an great investment! Well, those were good aspirations for a couple of individuals obsessed with food, and of course it never worked out. Soon, we were consumed with dreams of growing the most delicious and beautiful organic produce, rearing the best treated livestock while doing “no harm” to the environment.
The fact that we were parents to a 6 year old and feeding him food that we sourced from our own gardens was another extremely important contributor to why we decided to farm full time at Grey County.
Now, the 7 year old is almost 24 and our farm has developed exponentially, We are still in love with food, we still farm with the same principles of preserving and improving our environment and every day when we look around at the beauty surrounding us we are amazed at how lucky we have been.
We grow about 6 acres of vegetables and utilize hoop houses to extend our season. That means we have greens as well as root vegetables through winter months. We have a small orchard of mostly apple trees which we planted as soon as we bought the farm. We grow a few perennials such as strawberries and asparagus for an early season harvest.
Over the years, we have planted hundreds of landscape trees which not only look great but serve to moderate the climate during heat waves.
There are 4 ponds on our property that catch rainwater and slowdown runoffs. We then use some of this water to irrigate our crops.
We have a herd of 14 cows which are a constant in our fields. They rotationally graze the fields about 7 to 8 months of the year and move back to the front barn area when pasture is covered with snow. They eat hay and a whole lot of root vegetable seconds during the winter months.
In addition to the cows we have laying hens, meat chickens and a few pigs. All of these guys are on pasture till days get shorter and cold.
Another principle we abide by with the help of our extensive cooking and baking experience is to waste nothing!
We use a lot of our own produce to create preserves, pickles, jams, pies, and many other fine foods which you can enjoy for yourselves or buy as gifts.
We regularly donate to our local foodbank and keep our chickens happily eating greens during winter months because of our no waste policy.
Our door is always open to visitors as long as you phone and make an appointment, otherwise you can visit our new Farm Store during store hours.
Looking to the future, we think we will keep on farming as long as we can, with the same principles of land stewardship and Organic Farming. We will remain a small farm that is sustainable, producing delicious and healthy food.
Ayse Akoner and Jens Eller