Hi Friends! It has been a busy time for me the last couple of years as owner/builder on my new farm. It’s a beautiful 8 acres of rolling land with huge, gorgeous views of the ocean and Mauna Loa. Mauna Loa is the largest cubic volume mountain in the world and is currently snow-topped. I am blessed with deep, volcanic ash soil which is known to produce some of the best grass on the island. This is great because I bought the farm mainly for pasture. Yes, I got a horse of my own after many years! (Look for the palomino horse in the field in the picture above.) And I have plenty of grass for boarding other people’s horses too. The ocean is 4 miles down a scenic country lane, so the location is ideal for trail rides.
My new garden is a work in progress, but getting better all the time. Here is an amazing “black” carrot that came from it recently. Even though the carrot is oversized, it was not woody. I ate it with hummus. Yum!
I am prepping to put in a mixed fruit orchard. One challenge here is the high winds, so windbreaks are a must. You can see the windbreak fence I have for the garden in the top picture. It is five feet tall horse wire with a wind blocking screen (typically sold as “privacy screen”). Sure helps a lot! Unfortunately, it can have some issues when the wind comes from the opposite direction of the prevailing winds. I could have it on each side of the fence, however I like the vines to be able to grab onto the wire. Once the vines are established, they protect the fence. I have started putting in windbreak trees, about 100 so far. Need a lot more!
Other News: I have a new cohort of grant-funded farmers here on the Big Island. This is my 3rd year of this program. As part of the program, the farmers learn from the online video course, get their soil analyzed and amended, and have their vegetables analyzed for nutrient content. I will be sharing more about our side-by-side growing trials in a future post. If you farm on the Big Island, you may be able to participate in this program in the future. Just pop me an email to “info at beyondorganicresearch.com” if you would like an application.
Of course, I still work with farmers and gardeners who want to grow more nutrient-rich foods across the USA, Canada, and beyond.
Wishing you a Happy Holiday season!