CLINTON RESIDENTS CELEBRATE FARMS
AND EAT LOCALLY GROWN FOOD
Town of Clinton FARM TOUR, October 2, 2010
On October 2, 2010, more than 100 Town of Clinton residents toured three different farms and learned about their operations and products.
On Schultzville Road Tatra Farm, run by partners Patricia Garthwaite Towle and Pavel Blaho, is currently celebrating their 25th year in business and is ranked #1 breeder of show jumpers in the United States. Pat gathered residents in a horse show ring to demonstrate training young horses in free jumping. Their Grand Prix jumper, stallion, Magnum, also demonstrated his beautiful form as he entered the ring and responded to Pat’s directions. A training session was held in an outdoor ring to demonstrate working with young horses which are being prepared for the show ring. Pat jumped Blue Danube, a six-year-old developing Grand Prix jumper, and demonstrated the process of training the talented gray horse.
At Nature’s Healing Farm on Hollow Road, Andrea and Tony Carvalho, demonstrated how they grow herbs and heritage vegetables from seed, stressing the economy and importance of creating diversity in plants grown. The health of farming practices was stressed, with encouragement of local biodiversity increasing native beneficial insect predators, such as wasps, dragonflies and ladybugs, thus requiring fewer sprays to protect the plants. Flowers are grown from cuttings are grown in greenhouses until large enough to market in New York City. The farm hopes to become certified organic in the future.
In the barn at the intersection of Pumpkin Lane and Salt Point Turnpike owned by Stephen Daniel, Don Lewis demonstrated his 10 year effort to develop grinding facilities to produce flour made from local grains in his mill, Wild Hive Farm Community Grain. He showed several mills which grind grains provided by local farmers. A small amount of the flour produced is baked into breads and other products. Most flour is sold to bakeries and stores in the Hudson Valley and New York City. Don described his flour as “nutrient dense” because the grain is so fresh when it is ground that it would grow, if planted. He stated that, 100 years ago, the farm economy was based on the growing of grains. He feels that his efforts are beginning to show success with increased interest among people in understanding where their food is produced, in consuming foods with better nutrition and eating local foods.
After the farm tour, residents gathered at the Creek Meeting House in Clinton Corners where they enjoyed a lunch prepared by Wild Hive Farm Bakery. The cost of the lunch was covered by local donors. Town Supervisor, Jeff Burns, and consultant planner, Mary Ann Johnson, spoke briefly about the Farmland Protection Plan for the Town of Clinton. It was a beautiful autumn day and all enjoyed the tour and delicious lunch!
On Saturday, September 12, 2009, many Clinton residents toured three local farms representing different types of successful agricultural operations.
Adriance farm on North Creek Road, and visible from Route 9G, had
been in farming since the early 1800’s. John Adriance showed residents the
“Dutch” style barn which was restored, in part, with funds from New York
State. Heritage breeds are the specialty of the farm, with Cheviot sheep,
Suffolk punch work horses and long-horned Scottish cattle. The farm
manager, David Lomasney, grows beef cattle on their many acres of pasture.
Beef, lamb and pork are sold by the farm at the Hyde Park farm market. The
farm is a gateway to Clinton in the southwest.
Edition Farm on Rusky Lane and Spooky Hollow Roads, in business since 1986, is a thoroughbred horse farm where mares give birth to foals which are raised with professional expertise, focusing on the best nutrition and health care. Owner, Vivien Malloy, expertly showed pairs of mares and foals, as well as weanlings and yearlings, from prize-winning blood lines. The solar barn was a special feature of the tour since the farm takes pride in being environmentally friendly. The barn is totally powered by solar cells. The flooring is constructed of recycled tires. Bedding material in stalls for brood mares is recycled cardboard. Mrs. Malloy explained that owners of New York-bred horses qualify for returns from the track. Edition Farm was named 2006 Breeder of the Year by the New York Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association.
Sunny Gardens North on Deer Ridge Drive,
public toured three new thermostatically-controlled greenhouses built by
owner, Sean Giles, to supply annual plants for his business on Route 9D in
Wappingers. Mr. Giles demonstrated how he uses efficient methods to seed
and transplant plants into larger containers for sale. He uses only
environmentally-sound methods of reducing plant diseases and uses waste rice
hulls, which are agricultural waste, for drainage in soil mixes, rather than
vermiculite. The public viewed the field of irrigated chrysanthemums which
will be sold this fall.
the Creek Meeting House on Salt Point Turnpike Clinton 150 residents
gathered for an excellent lunch made entirely from local foods provided by
Wild Hive Farm Bakery and paid for by contributions from The Omega
Institute, the Clinton Area Business Association,
Dennis Quinn, Shirley Jones, Trip Sinnott and Mike DiGiacomio.
After lunch Mary Ann Johnson, planner with Greenplan, described the work of
the Open Space and Farmland Protection Committee as it works to draft a plan
for the town. She presented population projections, maps of natural
resources and the need for Clinton to plan to protect valued open space and
agricultural lands. Comments and questions from the public indicated
positive interest in the planning process.
|On Saturday, October 11, 2008, about 100 residents
toured farms and a sawmill operation in Clinton. Visitors were greeted by
members of the Cookingham family who have been farming on Primrose Hill
Farm on Fiddler’s Bridge Road since about 1800. Robert and Bob Schoch
demonstrated how holiday trees were planted and trimmed and how the
surrounding fields were cared for to maintain the trees. Viola Schoch has
photographs of families which have been returning to their farm for 30 years
to cut holiday trees, some from as far away as Long Island. The Dutch barn
is an example of the 17th century history of the family farm.
Greg Quinn of Walnut Lane gave tours of his fields of currants, a new venture in farming in New York State. Greg explained the process of growing and caring for currants and spoke about the high nutrient value of the fruit. Greg is marketing black currant juice in stores throughout the area.
Michael Seelbach and Jeffrey Babcock, owners of Custom Forest Products on Meadowbrook Lane demonstrated the cutting of timbers to manufacture sheds in business. Forester Lou Turrito gave tours of the efficient operation. Other land on the farm are involved in the production of hay, corn and livestock.
Clinton residents then gathered at West Clinton Firehouse #1 for a pot luck lunch and discussion how best to protect Clinton’s beautiful open space and farmland. Many excellent ideas were expressed as residents thought about how best to plan for the future.