I can’t believe I forgot to write for a whole month.I thought I had missed maybe two weeks!
I’ve been holding on to this idea for a while now, and I finally have a nice amount of photos to share with everyone.
Every time I drive out to the Sanctuary I pass this amazing organic farm call Cava’s Organic Farm. I first stopped off at the end of the first summer I started volunteering and found out how nice all of Mr. Cava’s produce is! He has a really large field right off of Roger Steven’s Road with a small greenhouse and a skeleton of a green house where he keeps scales, tables and any vegetables he has picked that morning. He’s a scruffy older man who seems to only wear t-shirts, the same pair of dirt covered shorts and a pair of flip flops that are basically all the way worn through. He has an indistinguishable accent, wears glasses that are always crooked on his face and is COVERED in a layer of dirt every time I see him. I see this as a physical form of how much he loves his little vegetable farm and how dedicated he is to it. Did I mentioned he runs the place by himself?
The first time I went I asked for tomatoes (he then pointed at the table under the greenhouse skeleton that was strewn with random tomatoes and said “jus’ wipe one off and trrry” (I had never eaten a tomato like this before!). I also asked for corn and potatoes. What happened next amazed me. He didn’t bring me over to an area where I would choose what he had already picked but instead said “ok, I be rrright back” and went out and picked my corn and tomatoes and dug up fresh potatoes! I was hooked. How much more FRESH can you ask for than picked right at the moment you buy it? He gave me enough food for several meals and he quoted me under $5, I gave him the full five anyway. An absolute steal!
That was the only time I was able to go that summer but its been two years since then and I still go every week or two as soon as he opens. This year has been the funniest and more plentiful yet. Now, he invites me along with him on the treks through the field to pick for myself, allows me to walk through the greenhouse, and poke about on my own.The first time I went this year he gave me this haul:
Not pictured is twice as much basil, as much parsley and 1lb of garlic. The small bunch on the counter is wild mint. He asked me “would you like mint?” I said yes and he bent down right where we were standing in the field and picked me some wild mint! He hadn’t even planted it. It just grows wild all over the property. He then went on this 15 minute search through all of the plants for the eggplant and cucumber just so I could have the first ones of the year.
The next time I went I asked for more oregano, basil, parsley, and mint with the purpose of creating a stock of dried herbs. He mumbled something about a bag each and went out to pick them while I took photos and checked things out. These are the photos I took!
When he came back with a grocery bag each stuffed of the herbs I understood what he mumbled. I was excited to have it all but it ended up being a lot of work to prepare it all! I put some of the herbs in water and they rooted themselves within days. They are nice little displays in my kitchen window now. The rest are dried in jars ready to be used up in something delicious.
The greenhouse is really amazing. He grows eggplant, cucumbers, tomatoes and a few other things in there. When I walked in it was like going straight into a sauna! Everything looked lush, healthy and there was condensation dripping from the ceiling. Walking back into the 30degree weather was like walking into air conditioning, if only for a moment.
I’m always glad to go and check out what is ready that day or what interesting things Mr. Cava is going to say to me. Last time He gave me a huge bunch of weeds that I was instructed to eat in a salad “lots of omega 3!” They tasted like grass soap, so I didn’t end up keeping those…
I asked him if he runs the farm all by himself and he told me that he does, and only gets help from one person, but very rarely. I also confirmed with him that he does use the word organic truthfully and he really does. “Ever since I starrrted farrming! No pesticide. All natural” Which you can really see, there are bugs crawling wherever they please and there are weeds in between each row. He does sell meat rabbits, which I obviously don’t agree with, but I’ve never seen them. I think they are far off in the back. I almost forgot to mention one of the best parts! When you walk onto the property, hanging off the greenhouse skeleton is an empty propane tank and a hammer with a sign that says “ring the bell”. He’s often far out in the field and can’t hear if you just shout “hello”, so he has this funny makeshift ‘bell’. I always feel strange striking this tank with a hammer and hearing metallic “BONG”.
If anyone want’s to visit the farm, I highly recommend it. Head down the 416, take the Roger Steven’s Road exit, hang a right and it’s just a few moments down on the right, before the town of North Gower.
I’ve got many other ideas brewing for posts and I’ll write them as long as I can find a moment to sit down. Keep your eyes peeled!