Sunday, January 2, 2011


This new year brings us to a new piece of farmland. As much as we will miss the Niagara region and the wonderful Lowery family, we have decided to relocate to the Meaford area where we will have more land and an actual farmhouse to be based out of. No more sleeping in tents, squatting in the bush, eating in the car etc. The new land is called the "Free Farm" because the "Free" family once owned this piece of land.
We are excited to be taking over a 5-6 acre piece of the property and converting it back to "organic". Grant will fill you in on all the details of that later. After planting a whole bunch of garlic in October  and working at our "real" jobs like dogs all fall, we are excited to spend the next few months talking to chefs, friends and other farmers about ideas and plans for this planting/growing season. Hopefully we can get in a little skiing too.  Here are a few pics from this Christmas season around the Free Farm.

Ella's new hat from Santa
New baby cows!
X-country on Xmas day
Very treacherous hills around here
Chef and sous-chef
West coast visitor Eric Closs snowshoeing
Bruce Trail
Grant taking a rest
Lainie and Eric post snowshoeing
Gus and Kerri
Santa Lucia
Mark and Joyce and Sparky the blind dog
underwear roasting by the fire
Julian and snowfort

All the best in 2011! And thanks to all our friends who have visited and shared time with us here this holiday season.


Garlic for miles

Lainie, Ella and I spent Thanksgiving up at our farm house near Meaford. We now have a 5 acre plot of land there which is exciting. We decided to plant some garlic for next year. Mark from Sunrise Organics ( was able to procure me 30 lbs of good quality garlic for planting. While talking on the phone it seemed like a fun way to spend an afternoon. I did not realize at the time that 30lbs of garlic cloves equates to approximately 2700 cloves! Mark lent me his tractor and tiller so I was able to work up the land dig some rows to plant in. Lainie and I planted 5 rows of garlic that are 275 ft long. We spent most of the afternoon at it and I finished raking them over as the sun was setting. The next day we tilled the rest of the field. It was great to watch Lainie drive a tractor like a pro farm hand.
This weekend I went back up to the farm with Anthony Williams from Cowbell. We planted more garlic at Mark's farm and helped build some compost rows.  Then we went back to our farm and Anthony planted the perenial flower beds while I seeded the fields with a green manure crop of peas and grains. We also had several drinks and some good meals including dinner with Mark and Joyce. It was a fun and productive weekend. Thanks for your help Anthony. And Mark? I'm not sure where we would be at this stage if it wasn't for your generous help and advice.