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Council Bluffs, Iowa
I started my farm for a lot of reasons not related to farming. I continue to farm because of the challenge each season brings. I love the community a farm creates and being able to provide fresh, local produce to that community. I enjoy being my own boss and I have a lot of pride in the business I am building.
What are you farming right now?
I currently grow specialty vegetables and cut flowers. We focus mostly on high-value, quick-turnaround crops like radishes and leafy vegetables, but grow over 30 different vegetables to support our small, and growing, CSA. For cut flowers, we primarily focus on flowers that can be grown and sold as single stems cut at our local farmers market, but make a small number of bouquets each week.
What’s your vision for your farm?
My goal is to establish three functioning enterprises on the farm. I would like to increase our vegetable production to about 3 acres and grow our CSA to about 50 members. I would also like to establish a small U-pick apple orchard and pumpkin patch for fall sales and a small local garden center for spring sales.
Why do you want to participate in this program?
I’m super excited to be in this program because I am building a farm-based business with little to no horticulture or farming background. I believe this program will expose me to lots of different farming enterprises and I will get the opportunity to hear how lots of other farms operate. I hope the connections I make through this program will help me build a network of Iowa farmers I can look to as a model for my business.