Published Dec 21, 2016

Member Spotlight: Donna Warhover

By Tamsyn Jones

Passing on knowledge from farmer to farmer works because farmers are credible to each other. Supporting this farmer-led model is what we strive to do at Practical Farmers of Iowa.

Our 2017 annual conference, “Pass It On” (Jan. 201-21 – learn more here), celebrates this model and the impact of farmer-to-farmer learning on farmers’ confidence to explore new or different farming practices, and their ability improve farm profitability and land stewardship.

As we prepare for the conference, we’d like to introduce you to some of the PFI farmers you can learn from during conference sessions.

Member since 2014 Morning Glory Mount Vernon, IA

Member since 2014
Morning Glory
Mount Vernon, IA

Donna Warhover and her husband, Bill, raise vegetables at Morning Glory, the 3-acre farm near Mount Vernon that they have owned and operated since 2013. They rent an additional acre from a neighboring farmer. Produce is marketed via a CSA, at farmers markets, direct to a few restaurants and through a wholesaler.

Before starting her farm, Donna worked full-time at Goodwill Industries, a job she maintained for her first few years farming. This winter, she left that job to farm full-time. Central to Morning Glory’s mission is “sharing good food, and creating an environment of education and hospitality.” In 2015, Donna and Bill donated more than 1 ton of fresh produce to Table to Table, a food rescue organization that distributes food to those who need it.

During the growing season, Donna invites adults with disabilities to help on the farm through Goodwill’s Day Habilitation program. She also hosts a high school summer camp and other food-related events. In 2017, Donna plans to hold three “foodie” events: two that feature a food truck vendor and other craftspeople, and a third featuring a plated dinner prepared by a local restaurant.

Learn more about Donna’s farm story.

Donna will help lead “Lessons Learned: The First 5 Years of Farming” (on Friday, Jan. 20, from 12:30 – 2 p.m). During the session, she and two other beginning farmers will:

  • share their top lessons learned in the first five years of their farming operations
  • pass on what has worked and what has not worked during their startup years
  • share their vision of what is next for them

Get full details and speaker information in our 2017 conference brochure.

Register for the conference: Practical Farmers’ annual conference is open to everyone! Click here to learn more about the sessions, speakers and registration options.