Before the 2024 Piedmont Farm Tour kicks off this Earth Day Weekend, we’re excited to share the newcomers to this year’s farm tour!

We’re thrilled to welcome seven new farms to the tour this year. Within the mix, you can find community spaces, healing journeys, livestock from small to mighty, and growers committed to making their worlds better.

All photos submitted by the participating farms and used by CFSA with permission.

Bountiful Acre Market Garden | Saxapahaw | Keith Shalijan & Kate DeMayo

What to Expect: Bountiful Acre is a 1-acre market garden made up of a blend of perennial and annual vegetable systems. The theme here is symbiosis through and through. Each plant is incorporated into the homestead with the intent of enhancing and complementing the life that is already flourishing. Expect to see honey bees, chickens, orchard crops and spring annuals in full effect and to learn about how they work with the land and greater natural ecosystems. There will also be bouquets and plant starts aplenty for you to take home and green up your own place!

Favorite Spot: “Our favorite spot in the garden is probably our mini-orchard where we have 15 slowly but steadily maturing apple trees, cherries, and plums planted within a beautiful stand of white Dutch clover and orchard grass. Directly down the hill is our 1/3 acre pond which attracts many waterfowl, turtles, and a symphony of various frogs as well as providing our garden with irrigation, and directly behind this area are our two new beehives that we are so excited about! From this spot, we can also overlook the entire garden with all of its diversity of vegetables, flowers and cover crops growing and the many birds and beneficial insects flying through the garden at at all times throughout the year.” – Keith and Kate

Chatham Oaks Farm | Pittsboro | Rachel & Justin Clark

What to Expect: Chatham Oaks Farm is a serene, rural retreat located in Southwest Chatham County. Complete with a gambrel-roof barn, sprawling white oak tree, and picturesque berry fields, Justin and Rachel offer a lovely landscape for picnics, and family photos. In addition to featuring some local snacks, Chatham Oaks will also be opening their you-pick strawberry patch for the spring season. Upon joining their tour, expect to learn about what it takes to run a strawberry farm, have a go at using some of the farm equipment, and- weather permitting- even pick your own strawberries!

Favorite Spot: “Our favorite spot on our farm in the shade under the grand white oak tree in front of our gambrel roof barn. This spot is what drew us to the property to begin with and it remains our family’s favorite place for playing, having a picnic or jumping in giant leaf piles in the fall.” – Rachel & Justin Clark

Fireside Farm & Sawmill | Saxapahaw | Lisa Joyner & Randall Williams

What to Expect: Fireside Farm & Sawmill is an often unexplored realm of agriculture that Randall is excited to share with the Triangle and beyond. Since 2011, they’ve been helping landowners turn their trees into barns, homes, and furniture with their mobile sawmill and at their newly established permanent facility. Visitors will get to see two sawmills in action: one super-fast mill that produces 1000 board feet per hour and one that cuts 72” wide logs. Expect to learn all about healthy forest management, harvesting timber, farmer-friendly wood markets, and one of the world’s largest production chainsaws. You’ll even have the opportunity to buy some unique local lumber and raised garden bed kits, so make room in your trunk!

Favorite Spot: “My favorite spot at the new sawmill facility is standing beside an old-growth log. I get a lot of logs from 100+ year old trees that have died from natural causes, and my clients want to honor the tree in some way. So, when you make the first cut, you’re opening up the tree’s story– the rings tell about its growth rate and its adversities. I find evidence of people’s interaction with the tree over a century– electrical conduit, eyehooks for laundry lines, bullets from the Civil War.” – Randall Williams

Full Plate Farm |  Snow Camp | Matt Ballard

What to Expect: Full Plate Farm is the place to be if you hold an interest in doing things the collaborative way. In addition to being a regenerative produce farm with all the fixings- a variety of annual market crops, newly established blueberry and blackberry beds, and integrated pollinator hedgerows- Matt is going above and beyond to work with his fellow farmers to build a tool share library and foster equity of crop revenue. While touring with Matt, expect to learn about these explorations in addition to how he’s farming with both ecological benefits and human efficiency in mind.

Favorite Spot: “One of my favorite spots on our farm recently, during winter and spring, has been overlooking the main annual crop field toward the western sky during “golden hour”… when the sun’s indirect, fading light seems to make its last effort and shines through each leaf with such brilliance… And then within an hour, the dim light scatters and everything becomes a silhouette, especially the defoliated, hardwood trees in the backdrop. As the sunlight grows each day past the winter solstice, there’s a sense of disappointment on farm tasks left undone but also the anticipation of longer light to bask in.”

One Soil Farm | Cedar Grove | Meredith Cohen & Molly Zimmerman

What to Expect: One Soil Farm is a small-scale Jewish farm with a mission to provide the Jewish community (and everyone!) of the Triangle with local, sustainably grown vegetables through CSA programs. Beth El Synagogue, the Jewish Community Center, and Kehillah Synagogue are all part of One Soil’s CSA program to help carry out their mission. Expect to learn about their strong commitment to building personal relationships, offering Jewish education, and connecting the Jewish community with their agricultural heritage and deep rooted connection to the earth. Saturday will be fully dedicated to farm tours, and on Sunday, they’ll be opening up their fresh veggie stand and plant sale (featuring tomato and parsley plants just in time for Passover)! And if you still want to know more, One Soil Farm still has spaces left in their 2024 CSA, starting April 17 – check it out here!

Favorite Spot: “My favorite spot on the farm right now is what we like to call our “backyard” – a cute little area behind the greenhouse where we have our rain garden, our new blueberry patch, picnic tables and umbrellas, and some raised beds where we grow flowers and fun experimental plants for chefs and visitors! It’s so fun to have a place on the farm that’s not in larger scale production, that we can just make beautiful and relaxing for ourselves and for guests. It’s a great spot for a picnic or a cute family photo shoot at the farm!” – Meredith

Screech Owl Greenhouses | Sanford | Ralph “Screech” Sweger, Jr. & Cameo Strifler

What to Expect: Screech Owl Greenhouses is a prime example of farmer innovation and resourcefulness. From the use of hydroponic systems to beneficial insects for pest control, expect to see and hear about a wide variety of growing methods not often used for commercial farming. While touring with Cameo or Screech, you’ll get to witness the great potential that just a few greenhouses can possess and the incredibly tasty crops that they produce. If you’re lucky, you might even glimpse one of the several fur babies that call this place home.

Favorite Spot: “My favorite spot on the farm is the cool bot at the end of the day… I think the best place to take a selfie is in the lettuce house with the rainbow of lettuces. ”

– Screech & Cameo

Wolfberry Hawthorn Farm | Durham | Jason Bzdula

What to Expect: Wolfberry Hawthorn Farm is a produce operation growing a wide variety of herbs, vegetables, flowers, house plants, and more, all on less than two acres! Always trying to think outside the box, Jason is a dedicated experimental grower who is always finding new ways to push the boundaries of can be grown in central NC. Not only can visitors expect to learn about this year’s round of crop trials- including Jicama and papayas- but they can also explore the plant nursery, greenhouse, orchard, and herb & native plant gardens. There’s even a possibility to spot local wildlife such as songbirds, turtles, and the geese that nest on the pond!

Favorite Spot:  “[The pergola] is an area on the farm that might be great for people to sit for a bit and relax or take pictures… with a brick patio and some seating surrounded by a variety of fruiting shrubs and various herbs and flowers.” – Jason

Check out the other farms on the 2024 tour, where you can meet the whole list of farms participating and see where everyone is on the map!



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