Helping Gardeners Grow Podcast

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Next level garden tips so you can grow better edibles and gardens.

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Episode 6 – Tomato Farmers: Getting a Late Start

Guests: Al Grant & Gayle Berry

Big Idea:

Gayle and Al retired three times between them and were newlyweds in 2015 when they saw a farm with a greenhouse for sale near Qualicum Beach, B.C. They wanted to do something worthwhile with their time together so they bought the farm. Because they have already retired from careers, Gayle calls her and Al “elderly” farmers, and together they re-certified their 5-acre organic farm and they do all the farm labour. This is their sixth growing season in their now-improved 3,600 square foot greenhouse.

In the interview, Gayle and Al mention trying Stupice tomato, but now they only grow one variety: Arbason beefsteak tomatoes (https://www.westcoastseeds.com/products/arbason-beefsteak-organic)

Because their farm is certified organic they are using organic fertilizers including liquid Biofert (3-1-4) ( http://www.biofert.ca/products/liquid-fertilizers/tomato-vegetable-3-1-4.html) and they start seeds in OMRI (organic) certified soils. They also use Myke brand Mychorrizae (https://www.usemyke.com/en-ca/mycorrhizae/ ) in the hole at transplanting time to stimulate root production.

Al told me, after the interview, that he is concerned about food security, especially now with so many food-growing greenhouses converting to Cannabis production. Even though he is getting a late start, this farm is giving Al a chance to grow food and help his community be more food secure.

Website: Eagle Tree Organics is Gayle and Al’s business name but they do not have a web page. They are listed on the Organic Certification List (IOPA) here: http://iopa.ca/index.php/iopa-members/

Donna is Helping Gardener’s Grow through her interviews with various interesting growers and gardeners. Want to build soil, grow food in extraordinary ways or raise the world’s most expensive spice? Listen in and subscribe.​

In every podcast interview we talk about food, include a question and highlight the lesson learned in our Gardening Gold segment at the end. To ask a question about the current or past episodes send a voice memo from your phone to [email protected]. In the voice memo tell us your name and where you garden first and then ask your question.

Music in every episode is by Donna’s son, Brennan Anderson, school teacher and musician in Smithers, British Columbia, Canada.

Podcast producer Robyn Buchanan.

 

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