Blackberry Farm

Friends of the Farm

A Farm with Class

May on the farm heralds a time when the fields leap alive, like a tiny Ireland, where a hundred versions of the color green fill the landscape. As a lifelong gardener and cook, it is certainly my most favorite month of spring, and I am not alone. We all take pride in knowing the food in our restaurants is a very short distance, both literally and figuratively, from the farm’s rows and paddocks. And there is no better way to get personal with the plants, animals and humans responsible for the menus’ ingredients than in our new Farmstead Field School.

In our pastures, the ewes have been shorn of their winter tweed and new spring lambs frolic, spending most of their time airborne. Hens are laying eggs as if they are paid commission and young piglets oink around like the mobile composters that they are. Several days a week we offer Livestock Time, where you may experience feeding, moving the animals from field to field and engaging with staff to discover our ways of the farm.

The month of May means no more threat of frost in the vegetable gardens, so we go “all in” with our summer crops. The air is warm but the soil is still moist and cool, so newly transplanted tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and potatoes take up residence alongside still-vibrant spring greens of lettuce, arugula, kale and collards. Greens that are so full and juicy that salads seem to jump into the harvesting baskets by themselves. We offer a number of special activities in and around the garden: A Lifetime of Seeds, a class about preserving storied heirloom varieties; A Walk Through History, where traveling the garden rows reveals centuries of heritage and discovery; Au Natural, which will explain many methods of natural growing; and Farm Nutrition and Eating Between the Rows, where healthy harvesting and little-known edibles, respectively, beg to be part each wholesome meal.

For the foodies among us, the Artisan Cooking Demonstration will certainly excite. Learn the art of “putting up” food with our history-loving Preservationist, enjoy a meal crafted by our talented Butcher or spend time cooking with me, where I let the garden’s bounty determine the menu.

In the Farmstead Field School one may choose experiences ala carte, or perhaps the entire curriculum. Either way, it is a unique and memorable way to connect with our farm in a truly visceral way. Please check with our Concierge for the daily schedule of activities – think of it as growing to school!

Jeff Ross
Farmstead Educator