Earlier this week we visited a Rhode Island farm – approximately 10 acres total with 8 in vegetable crops. It is certified organic and utilizes a mixture of free range chickens integrated on the crop lands for fertility enhancements. They also have free range hogs rotated in the crop lands. Lastly there are flowers for sale.
I did not ask specifically about the variety of vegetable crops, but I think not less than 30 different vegetables. They use organic, permaculture and biodynamic methods (and seem to be very capable of discriminating the agro-ecological qualities of those diverse farming disciplines)
The land was not prime soils, and this was only the second season that it has been farmed…so there had been an intensive effort at soil quality improvement over the two seasons. They have one high tunnel/greenhouse.
The farm was lovely!
The crops were abundant, the animals were healthy, and there economy is becoming robust.
After fifteen years of looking at the agro-ecological conditions of Rhode Island, it seemed a very appropriate agriculture for the State.
It also offered the answers to a number of Rhode Island’s socio-economic problems by 1) offering their community high quality food and flowers, 2) creating a labor intensive industry that provided needed employment to young folks stuggling to find meaningful work, 3) creating significant environmental improvements/benefits on production farming land with minimal negative impacts (none that I could see).
Beginning with this blog entry, I’ll begin exploring and describing other farms that, in my opinion, are appropriate to Rhode Island.