Extending the Vegetable Season in the Field and High Tunnel

Sunday, October 6 | 3 – 5 p.m. | Mt. Vernon, IA

Krouse FD 2015 laura 2

A message from Laura Krouse: “Dear farming friends, I am disappointed to tell you that this is one of my worst farm years ever, particularly for fall crops, which for the past 30 years I have been able to grow quite well.  A thousand Brussels sprout plants are exploding with black rot.  As soon as the turnips and pac choi emerge, flea beetles demolish them.  And the rest is just as bad. It really is unbelievable.

Though I’m embarrassed for people to come and see this mess during a field day, I am told, and am persuaded, this can be an opportunity for all of us to learn some important lessons from one another, and to share in the struggle of farming with extreme weather. So if you come to my field day, please attend in this spirit of solidarity, with your humor, your horror stories, and your hope and ideas to improve.

We’ll probably be having tomato sandwiches, because I expect that’s all there will be!”

Growing produce in the fall affords all the fun of growing the same crops in the spring, but with fewer of the problems. Tour a 100-share CSA farm that provides food from the gardens until late fall without requiring the use of a high tunnel. Laura will also show off her newest high tunnel, built in 2019, and share the results of her first season growing in it – whatever they may be!



Laura Krouse | Abbe Hills Farm | laura@abbehills.com


Krouse FD 2015 greens harvester filled bagsAbbe Hills Farm is situated on 72 acres north of Mt. Vernon. Laura and her crew grow vegetables for a large CSA, plus a handful of other local markets, especially fall crops. The farm is managed with crop rotation, cover crops, integrated pest management and pollinator habitat, and without the use of synthetic pesticides. Soil conservation and water quality practices are used over the entire farm. Laura also serves as a soil and water conservation district commissioner.


  • Variety selection
  • Planting dates
  • Harvest planning
  • Irrigation
  • Seeders and harvest tools
  • High tunnel production
  • Obtaining cost-share through the Natural Resources Conservation Service’s Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP)


LOCATION: 825 Abbe Hills Road Mt. Vernon 52314


From Cedar Rapids: Take Mt. Vernon Road southeast to Abbe Hills Road, which intersects near the Community Bible Church. Turn left (east) on Abbe Hills Road; the farm is about 1 mile east. You will see two red sheds and two high tunnels on the north side of the road.


A light supper will follow the field day. Please RSVP by clicking the blue button below. 

We take RSVP numbers to get an idea of the amount of food that we need to provide for the event. If you RSVP after the deadline but before the event, you are still welcome, but we cannot guarantee a meal.


2019 Field Day Sponsors

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