Alyson Chisolm of Windy Hill Organic Farm in McKees Mills, NB, has offered an annual organic gardening course since 2012. Every Saturday in March, she covers a lot of ground (pun intended) with her class of about 30 gardening pupils. Two of her former students, Fran and Mark Day, founded an urban organic farmstead within Moncton City limits in 2015, and this year’s course ended with a visit to their amazing operation.
A walk through the Codiac Organics property set the stage for the story of how this farming journey began. Several years of research and planning went into the venture and hearing about what the land used to look like painted a picture of how much patience is needed in farming, and perhaps in life. It is nice to be reminded that good projects take time and that there is no finish line. Each year, their infrastructure continues to grow – from irrigation lines to greenhouse heaters to a luxuriously large chicken coop!
With a few feet of snow on the ground, expectations for greenery weren’t very high, but Fran and Mike introduced the group to a tropical paradise in their greenhouse! No need to buy a plane ticket down South in a controlled climate like this! All you’d need is a nice cold drink, a beach chair, and perhaps a CD loaded with the sounds of crashing waves and hungry seagulls. The camera lens and Mike’s glasses took some time to de-fog with the major temperature shift.
Who would think that within a 5-minute drive to a Cineplex, or Starbucks there is a place to pick up farm-fresh eggs and locally grown organic greens in the dead of winter? While grocery stores sometimes struggle to provide fresh produce in response to climate changes in other countries, we have local farmers with a controlled growing environment who can provide fresh options all year round despite our climate’s variety of weather (and let’s not forget that variety is the spice of life!). Codiac Organics makes eating fresh, local, and organic food options year-round a convenient reality! Looking forward to following this excellent adventure in food, and you can too!
Codiac Organics: https://www.facebook.com/codiacorganics/
Windy Hill Farm: http://www.windyhillfarm.ca/
Jill Van Horne is a Network Development Coordinator, with Our Food SENB.
Learn more about Our Food SENB: http://www.nbfoodsecurity.ca/westmorland-albert-food-security-action-network/
Learn more about The Our Food Project NS: https://ecologyaction.ca/ourfood