How We Grow Our Vegetables

All vegetable growers in the Siskiyou Cooperative are certified organic farms. Growing high quality, organic produce has become easier as farmers have gained a greater understanding of how to manage pests and disease. Without the quick fix of most herbicides and insecticides, organic farmers must rely on a whole range of pest management practices. These include mechanical control of weeds, crop rotation, biological controls (introducing one organism to control another organism), covering plants at risk of insect predation, keeping plants healthy with appropriate fertilization and irrigation, and much more. Farmers now know the best times of day to harvest each crop and the optimal temperatures and humidity levels at which to store harvested produce. Even with all this valuable information, organic farmers are constantly challenged by both new and familiar insects and plant disease. Often, farmers will have to till in or compost crops that have too much insect damage to salvage for market. This can be one of the most difficult aspects of farming. Fortunately, most small, organic farmers are highly diversified- growing up to 50 different crops, which manages risk in case of any crop losses.

While each grower in our cooperative adheres to the National Organic Standards, how each of the growers applies organic methods on the farm is extremely diverse. Barking Moon Farm grows vegetables on several acres and uses crop rotation and row covers to manage pests. Seven Seeds Farm is highly diversified with hedgerows and perennials acting as natural insect corridors for beneficial bugs. L & R Farm uses animals in rotation with vegetables to add fertility to the soil. Wolf Gulch Farm grows root crops to open soil channels and experiments with cover crops over the winter to build soil. Dancing Bear Farm also grows organic seed crops, which creates habitat for insects when vegetable plants flower and go to seed. There are just some of the ways we carefully grow your organic produce with intention.

 

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