Community Supported Agriculture is a direct partnership between the consumer and the farmer. CSA members pay in advance for a share of the upcoming harvest, thus the farmer is ensured a consistent market and the consumer is ensured high-quality local produce. Produce is picked, packed and picked up all on the same day.
About the Farmer: I am a third generation farmer from Northeast Louisiana. My experience in farming started in 1971 on 300 acres of land in Tensas Parish, LA. We grew cotton, corn, soybeans, wheat and furrow irrigated on most all of our crops. I also grew vegetables on 25 acres of sandy loam soils for Malone and Hyde accounts as well as for local families. We were farming up to 10,000 acres until we moved to Texas in the 90’s. We have grown vegetables for local families for the last 15 years.
About the Farm: We grow most everything we sell on our 75 acre farm out here in Longview, TX. Our farm is all-natural meaning our farm is a chemical-free zone. We use no pesticides, insecticides, antibiotics, genetically modified organisms, or chemical fertilizers. We strive to exceed organic standards by not using “certified organic” pesticides, soaps, bleaches, wax, or sprays that have crept into organic farming as large corporations have encroached upon the world of organics. We do utilize beneficial insects such as lady bugs, praying mantis, green lace wings, and tricograma wasps to help control pests. Lizards, birds, frogs, snakes, and spiders find their home here amongst the veggies – not using poisons they find safe haven at Bill’s Organic Gardens and Farmers Market. We also practice intense companion planting to help control unwanted pests and to keep weeds to a minimum – not an easy task.
How do I get my share? Shares are picked up here at Bill’s Organic Garden by subscribers on agreed mornings before noon, using fresh fruits and vegetables that have been harvested only hours prior right here on the farm. Some subscribers organize weekly rotations where a designated person drives out to the farm to collect several members’ shares and then delivers them within that particular community.
What will be in my shares? A typical June share should include a mix of: jalapenos, winter squash, cucumbers, eggplant, green beans, Yukon gold potatoes, tomatoes, watermelon, and bell peppers. Over the winter, the shares might include: salad mix, cauliflower, turnips, radishes, red potatoes, Swiss chard, spring onions, spinach, assorted peppers, aruguta, and cilantro. The quantity and variety are dependent on many factors, including weather or pests, and what we are able to successfully grow and harvest in a particular crop. A typical farm share feeds two people for one week.
What varieties do you grow? I grow more than 30 types of vegetables and more than 100 varieties of them. Purple, white, yellow, and orange carrot, purple and orange cauliflower, half a dozen varieties of green beans, 12 types of greens, more than 10 types of lettuce, gold, white, and striped beets, basil, broccoli, cabbage, chard, chillies, cilantro, collard greens, cucumbers, dill, eggplant, figs, garlic, green garlic, kale, kohlrabi, melons, mustard greens, okra, parsley, peas, peppers, potatoes, radishes, rutabagas, salad mix, spinach, summer squash, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, turnips, watermelon, winter squash, and more. I also offer all-natural farm cage free eggs from happy chickens living right here in Gregg County.