Friday, 22 February 2013

Health and stuff

I have been spending time in the office so that in the next couple of weeks when we start to heat the greenhouse I can leave the paperwork behind, or at least for the time being.

I'm very excited to be growing a greenhouse full of tomatoes (mostly HEIRLOOM varieties) and a good selection of peppers.  Oh how I long for those beautiful orange peppers that we ate like apples and a bowl of fresh salsa for snacking while cooking dinner.

Orange bell peppers are an excellent source of carotenoids like alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, lycopene and lutein,  cryptoxanthin, and zeaxanthin, plus vitamin C and E.  Zeaxanthin promotes eye health, Beta-carotene wards off harmful free radicals that damage healthy cells, and they are an excellent source of vitamin C. Studies have shown that there are only two veggies that can provide you all this goodness and they are tomatoes and bell peppers.  So having said that, the greenhouse if bursting with goodness!

Ever since attending the Heirloom Expo last September in Santa Rosa, CA I am committed to growing 
heirloom, heritage, open-pollinated, and organic seeds. If we are trying to grow nutrient dense, non-GMO, chemical free food, then it must start with good seed.

We attended the Back To Your Roots Annual Producers Conference in Regina again this year.
We had an amazing keynote speaker line-up.  Dr Arden Andersen, Dr Don Huber, Glen Rabenberg, and Dr Tom Dykstra.  All world class speakers who do in fact travel the world educating.

Dr Andersen possesses a unique understanding of the link between soil/crop health and human health.  He works both as an integrative family doctor and a soil and crop consultant.

Dr Huber spoke on GMO's and glyphosate, and state of the world food system.

Dr Dysksta spoke to us about bugs, yes bugs and their relationship to healthy or unhealthy crops and what exactly that should mean to the farmer.

Glen Rabenberg is the President of Genesis Soil Rite Calcium.  After an extensive background in animal pharmaceuticals he started to understand the relationship between sick animals and poor feed.   
This relationship also holds true for humans and the food we consume.

To say the least it was a very emotional and eye opening couple of days.

If you are interested in the topic of soil health (having vital nutrients available for plant use) and would like more information, contact us @  We'll also have dvd's from the conference available.


Thursday, 21 February 2013

Winter travels...........

Well, it's starting to feel like maybe Spring is around the corner.  Our list is once again very long, and we have been working hard to get everything ready for another season.

This winter we were very fortunate to be asked to visit Australia and New Zealand to talk to the farmers/ producers there.  Our first stop in the Australia was about a 5 hour drive inland west from Sydney, AU to a place called Griffith NSW.  4 hours of the drive was through desert like country, very dry and barren.
I couldn't help but feel sorry for the animals grazing on the brown pasture.  Then all of a sudden you enter an area that has what seemed like more citrus and grapes than Florida or California.  What a beautiful sight.  Orange grove after orange grove, and wineries like Yellow Tail.  We were in heaven! 
We spent a couple of days with the citrus and grape growers explaining our soil amendment program that we use here in North America.  They were extremely receptive as the know how important Calcium is to their orange groves.

We toured back out to the coast.  What diverse terrain Australia has.  Then we were off to New Zealand for more meetings.  We flew into Christchurch and drove south.  I have never seen so many sheep in my life.  The countryside is very lush and green and the hill sides are covered with sheep, and dairy cattle and where there is some flatter land they use it for farming.  Greg met with several people in the south.  We also had the opportunity to see how they spray their crops and seed some fields.  They use that was something to see.
Then we headed towards the north island to meet some commercial growers.  I have never seen so many beet fields or that many carrots!  This particular commercial grower cans lots of sliced and diced beets.  They eat beets on hamburgers, and sandwiches like we do pickles.  Surprisingly delicious!

On our way back to Auckland we were able to visit a blueberry producer and see how the 100+ acres blueberry orchard runs.  It gave us hope and inspiration for our 45 acres of saskatoon berries.  With the help of proper equipment we are going to test out the fresh market for our berries this season.

What an amazing trip, and the people we met, some will sure to be life long friends. It kept us in touch with the land and what we love to do.  Made us realize that farmers everywhere face some kind of challenges.  

We look forward to this season, with offerings of some new products.  
Hope to see you all in July