This past week was super busy for me; the last half of the week I attended my first “American College of Sports Medicine Health & Fitness Summit” (which means VERY long days), including the first part of Saturday, followed by a farm tour of Springdale Farm (located in the actual CITY of Austin), followed by 6 hours of Krav Maga Self Defense training.
I have so many things to share, it was hard for me to decide what to blog about this week, so I may end up posting two! We’ll start today with my tour of the Springdale Farm . This is another local farm that is actually located in the City of Austin, practically downtown! Paula and Glenn Foore are the wife and husband duo that run this farm, along with volunteers and employees from their landscaping business.
The Farm is 5 acres, and is primarily a vegetable farm, but they also have chickens (and therefore fresh eggs). They have just acquired “runner ducks” and will soon have duck eggs as well.
They use sustainable, organic farming methods, and are in the middle of applying for “official” USDA Organic status. One of the things they do is plant flowers in the vegetable garden areas to help increase pollination, as well as spare the food crops from some bugs (some flowers are known to “repel” certain types of insects).
You may recall in my previous blog post I wrote about Stryk Dairy how excited I was to have a local dairy source. Well, I am now equally excited to have a local chicken egg source! There are several different types of chickens at Springdale Farm; I asked Farmer Paula and she rattled off the names (there were too many for me to remember, and I didn’t have a pen & paper handy, sorry!) and described how the eggs look different from each.
I found it quite funny that Paula and Glenn both mentioned that on the farm, the animals have multiple jobs. The chickens not only provide eggs, but also manure for fertilizer, as well as entertainment! Farmer Glenn specifically said the chickens are very good stress relievers; they are always happy to see him and never talk back! The hope for the runner ducks is that they will eat bugs in the garden (since they are not fond of vegetables; the chickens will eat the vegetables if left to roam in the garden areas!), as well as supply eggs. It was good to hear how much Paula and Glenn care about their animals.
They are a small CSA, and also have a small “farm stand” on site Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. This is a time when anyone can stop buy and purchase fresh eggs and vegetables. Right now they are growing broccoli, leaf lettuce, head lettuce, cauliflower, cabbage, Swiss chard, beets, spinach, collard greens, arugula, turnips, carrots, cilantro, basil, chives, chamomile, fennel, parsley, marjoram, thyme, dill, scallions, garlic, shallots, onions, Brussel sprouts, rutabaga, mustard green, Chinese cabbage, Napa cabbage, lavender, oregano, turnips, parsnips, and more. I was able to take home half a dozen fresh eggs, spinach, scallions, leeks, some herbs and a little lavender plant as part of my “tour.” I must say, everything tasted wonderful! Yesterday I made spinach omelets with jalapeño cheddar cheese and scallions and they turned out super yummy (everything but the salt and pepper was from local farms!).
If I haven’t convinced you already, I HIGHLY encourage you to become a member of a local CSA or shop at your local farmer’s market. You can’t beat the quality!