The last time we visited Nourishing Acres Farm, Keith and Megan Marshall had recently moved to Cedar Grove and were still clearing fields of overgrowth and setting up their farm. One of their two hoophouses was not yet covered, and they were doing most of the farmwork themselves.
They now have two full-time staff, four hoophouses, and about seven acres planted with rows of greens, squashes, tomatoes, potatoes, and more. They’re selling at two farmers markets (South Durham [SODU] and Midtown Raleigh) as well as supplying our stores with all kinds of produce.
We walked through several of the fields last week when we visited. We saw the rows of lettuce that have been supplying our Carrboro and Southern Village stores this spring. Megan estimated we have about two more weeks of lettuce availability; some of the varieties in the patch had already bolted. Coming soon, we’ll have greens like kale and chard from the farm. The longest rows contained summer squash and two types of potato plants.
Keith explained how the farm keeps its rows so neat. In some fields, black plastic covers the rows to keep out weeds; in others, they are able to cultivate periodically to remove weeds as the plants grow. They use a tractor with a special cultivation tool to cultivate the beds. They use a four-year rotation to eliminate insect pests and disease; for example, they won’t plant the field with cabbages with any vegetables from the Brassica family for four years.
We’re lucky and grateful to have hard-working local farmers to supply us with seasonal vegetables!