Produce & Gardens
The efforts of the gardener are threefold: production, preservation and education. Production incorporates the preservation of heirloom varietals, and the process of planting these preserved varieties provides a wonderful platform for education. Sharing the importance of preserving seed diversity and introducing the myriad wonderful flavors that come from particular produce, which have been planted for generations is what imbues the garden’s production with meaning and purpose.
“Each of these seeds tells a story,
and the fruit they bear is only the
half of it. It turns out you can trace each one back to some very interesting people and places.”
John Coykendall, Master Gardener
When a guests view the chef’s creations on their plate, they are looking at far more than a bean, beet, butterbean, carrot or pea. They are looking at living history—an unbroken chain of genetic diversity handed down to us by our ancestors. It is one more reason we pay homage to our farm heritage that stretches over centuries. A crop that has an especially long history in this area is beans. A number of “cutshort” types were strung up to dry for winter use, and other varieties were used as shell beans that were prepared and eaten when green or dried and stored. Other cornfield beans and half-runner types were used fresh in season and also canned to use until another summer brought the next crop. Some of the varieties we grow are
Milk and Cider, Pumpkin, White Hull Pink Tip, Old-Time Golden Stick, Granny, and Cades Cove cutshort. Our love of the heirloom varieties and our commitment to carrying on the traditions of the generations of farmers before us allow you to enjoy foods that are unique to this region and an integral part of Blackberry’s renowned Foothills Cuisine. We hope the freshness and the flavors of our gardens will be a memorable part of your time.
The Gardeners enjoy visitors. They revel in passing on their knowledge and reverence for history. The garden rows offer an ideal classroom. One can simply observe to absorb the spirit of the garden, or take a hands-on approach if dirty fingernails are within your comfort zone.