Archive for the 'Sustainable farming' Category

Perfect Patio Garden Plants!

We have been real busy at the farm and I haven’t had time to write a news letter lately. Actually, I have been writing for another project so with my limited creative abilities it is hard to do both. But we need to catch you up on the latest from the farm.

We have several new subscribers to the listserv so welcome to you.

When it finally warmed up last week everything in the garden just went crazy growing! We have lots of huge heads of romaine lettuce, plenty of broccoli, beautiful Swiss chard, arugula, mesclun mix, red kale, and cabbage by the weekend. I think there will be some zephyr squash ready and we have a few naturally grown strawberries. Of course everything we grow is without synthetic pesticides or fertilizers.

According to an article in the NY Times the government is going to restart a process that began 35 years ago to ban the routine use of certain antibiotics in confined animal feeding operations.
It is about time in our opinion. We do not use antibiotics or growth hormones in any of our animals.

We have a good supply of USDA grass fed Jersey beef. Our laying hens are happy so we have several dozen free range farm eggs.

Currently, hours at the Piedmont Triad Farmers Market are Tuesday through Friday (10:00 until 2:00); Saturday (8:00 until 4:00); Sunday (10:00 until 3:00). We are in space 74, farmers area 2.

Come and check our our selection of naturally grown vegetable plants and herbs for your garden or patio.

It is always great to see you at the market so we hope you will come visit with us this week!

Come Get Early Plants At Their Prime

I am late getting this email out again. Maybe it is spring fever due to the warm weather. However, we have been busy getting the market space set up for daily operations, planting in the field and in the greenhouse.

We are in the same space at the Piedmont Triad Farmers Market ( booth 74, farmers area 2). For the next couple of weeks our hours of operation are Tuesday through Friday 10:00 until 2:00; Saturday 8:00 until 4:00; Sunday 10:00 until 3:00.

Debra is back to help you during the week. She is doing fine and says she is glad to be back and looks forward to seeing you.

We have a good amount of USDA grass fed Jersey beef and free range farm eggs.

Spring greens are tender and sweet but with the warm weather the over wintered ones will bolt so won’t be around too long. So get them while you can. We are planting more but it will be a while before they are ready.

We have several herb and early vegetable plants for you. There is some large tomato plants in gallon pots that should give you an early start on some home grown tomatoes. Varieties are German Johnson, big beef, and bush early girl. The bush early girl is designed for containers or small gardens.

Hanging baskets or containers are just the ticket for people that have limited space and we have some dwarf vegetable plants just for that purpose. Tumbling tom cherry tomatoes work well in hanging baskets. Patio and red robin cherry are suitable for containers. We also have some bush pickle cucumbers that work for hanging baskets or containers.

This early in the spring cold sensitive plants should be placed in a warm sunny location and protected from a cold north wind. In case of frost or freeze danger they should be taken into shelter or well covered to prevent damage. But it is possible to have tomatoes, etc. a month or so earlier with the right management.

Well, it’s time to get to work with preparation for Market. We hope to see your smiles soon.


Joe Peterson

The Early Spring Greens are Beautiful!

What a beautiful couple of days! We have seen mocking birds, blue birds, and some other kinds of birds we are not familiar with that are probably just passing through. I suppose they are telling us spring is on the way. Even though it feels like spring the calendar tells us there is still almost a month left of winter.

Some rain is supposed to come in and it will return to seasonal temperatures tomorrow. I hope we don’t have bad storms.

Early spring greens are beautiful right now and as always they are tender and sweet. We have red kale, green kale, broccoli, collards, upland cress, turnip greens, and curly mustard. Also, there is some turnip roots and red winter cabbage.

We have a new supply of USDA grass fed Jersey beef and have all cuts available. In free range chicken we have a few small whole chickens, boneless/skinless breast, wings, and backs/necks.

There are plenty of fresh free range farm eggs.

We plan to be at the Piedmont Triad Farmers Market tomorrow from 9:00 until 3:00. The temperatures are forecast to return to normal with breezy conditions so everyone will want to wear their winter clothing.

We hope to see you at the market.

Hope to See You on Saturday!

We plan to be at the Piedmont Triad Farmers Market Saturday from 9:00 until possibly 1:00. The weather forecast is for high winds and turning much colder in the afternoon so we will plan on leaving earlier than usual. It looks like we are in for some winter temperatures for a few days.

From the garden we plan to have red kale, green kale, broccoli, and turnip roots.

There will be our grass fed jersey beef and free range chicken along with quite a few dozen free range farm eggs.

We will look for you at the market.

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas! And the best of New Year wishes to you!

This has been another good year for Peterson Farm and we want to thank each of you for your support of local organically grown food. We do a lot of hard work to provide the very best quality products for your culinary pleasure. Our greatest reward is that you enjoy it. And you must because you keep coming back for more.

We believe as the cost of energy and transportation keeps rising locally produced products of all kinds are going to become more important. Over the past fifty years we have become a nation of consumers instead of producers. But the tide is changing. We can make, produce, or create all kinds of things. And eventually we will do it more price effective than imported goods.

We think our support of local business is ensuring the economic future of our communities. Together we can prosper.

Hours at the Piedmont Triad Farmers Market for Christmas and New Year weeks are Friday (12.00 until 4:00) and Saturday (9.00 until 2:00).
We will be at the Greensboro Farmers Curb Market both Saturdays from 6:00 until 12:00.

Winter vegetables include red kale, green kale, black kale, curly mustard, collards, savoy cabbage, turnip roots, and lettuce from the greenhouse.

We have a good supply of USDA grass fed Jersey beef and free range chicken. Our laying hens have slowed a lot but we have several dozen free range farm eggs.

While you are making your holiday outings come on by the market for delicious healthy food.

Many Blessings,
Joe and Jean Peterson

November News From Peterson Farm

It is hard to believe it is already November. The growing season has been very busy and the wet, cool fall has been good for our fall crops. The cold, windy weekends have not been very friendly for market shoppers or vendors so we appreciate all our faithful customers. And, believe it or not, a few new ones!

According to reports, Whole Foods Markets profits were up over 30% in the third quarter and a survey found that over 75% of families with children buy at least some organic products. So organic is not just a ‘niche’ market anymore. Perhaps the accusation that organic is elitist will fade away.

From our gardens we have beautiful broccoli, Savoy cabbage, boc choi, romaine lettuce, Swiss chard, arugula, mesclun mix, red kale, green kale, black kale, turnip greens, curly mustard, collards, and turnip roots. All are grown using organic methods.

We have a good stock of all cuts of USDA grass fed Jersey beef. Along with the usual cuts of steaks, roasts, ground beef, etc. we have some things you might not be familiar with. Philly style steak is thin cuts (1/4 inch) of steak that are traditionally used to make the famous Philly steak sandwich. These can be cooked in just a few minutes in a fry pan and may be used for steak and eggs, stir fry, chunks in a salad , or any other use quickly cooked thin steak would work. Flat iron steak is lean boneless shoulder steak that is usually marinated and grilled. We use McCormick’s Montreal Steak marinate and we recommend soaking over night ( or 12 hours). Marrow bones are 4 inch leg bones that may be used to flavor soups, stews, or vegetables. They may also be stewed separately and the marrow removed to spread on bread as a delicacy. Knuckle bones are the joints that contain marrow but also have the cartilage. When stewed in other dishes the cartilage releases beneficial nutrients said to help lubricate our joints.

We have plenty of USDA free range pasture chicken in whole chickens, boneless/skinless breast, split breast, leg quarters, wings, backs, and necks.

Our laying hens are still doing well so we have several dozen fresh free range farm eggs.

Our market hours beginning next week at the Piedmont Triad Farmers market are Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Sunday ( 9:00 until 2:00); Saturday ( 8:00 until 4:00).

Hours at the Greensboro Farmers Curb Market are Saturday ( 6:00 until 12:00).

We will look for you at the market!

Picking Greens!

The first cool front of fall is blowing through and it appears by all reports the coolness may be a bit pinching for the next couple of days. Maybe we can turn off the AC and open the windows while we search for a sweater or jacket.

Right on que with the weather we are picking fall greens. The last couple of cloudy and rainy days caused them to just jump so we have beautiful, tender, sweet greens for you. They include turnip, mustard spinach, arugula, red kale, and some boc choi. Several others will be coming a bit later.

Other vegetables include heirloom field peas, calico crowder peas, heirloom white half runner beans, okra, egg plant, and butternut squash.

Sales have been brisk on USDA Grass Fed Jersey Beef and Free Range Pasture Chicken and we may experience temporary shortages of some items. Right now we have a good stock of most everything.

Our laying hens and pullets (young hens) are liking the cooler mornings and these beautiful ladies have really picked up laying eggs for us. We have several more dozen available. Hopefully, you won’t have to be disappointed by us being sold out.

Hours at the Piedmont Triad Farmers Market are Tuesday and Wednesday (10:00 until 2:00); Thursday and Friday (9:00 until 3:00); Saturday (8:00 until 4:00); Sunday (9:00 until 3:00).

Hours at the Greensboro Farmers Curb Market are Saturday (6:00 until 12:00).

Thank you for your support of local healthy food and your business with us. We hope to see you at the market!

Whats in Store at the Market

Working in a greenhouse is rewarding but it sure is a time consuming thing. We have spent countless hours planting, watering and taking care of plants. It is nice to see things green and growing while everything outside is still dormant. And it is a sign spring is not very far away. All those plants will soon be making great fresh vegetables. We plan to have some of the early cool
season plants for sale on Saturday. They will include cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, leaf lettuce, romaine lettuce, and arugula plants. Herb plants consist of sage, lemon balm, oregano, and white horehound. We will also have some large tomato plants in gallon pots that could be set out in the sun during the day and taken in
at night. They would give you a head start on early tomatoes. Just to remind you, all our plants are non-GMO and are grown with natural fertilizers and no pesticides. There will probably a few
cents increase in prices per pound or item this year. Along with increased fuel prices, all our supplies have increased in price. The farm is our living so we have to make a profit to keep going. That is part of sustainability.

Some businesses have not keep their products profitable. One example is the large chicken integrators. Almost all of them have gone bankrupt and sold to foreign companies for a fraction of the actual value of their assets. They still
operate under the same brand names but are foreign owned. The pressure to keep their prices low forced them out of business. And this sort of thing is becoming all too common. By contrast, we need to support locally owned and USA businesses. We recently became
aware of one such company, Texas Jeans, which is located in
Asheboro, NC. Their jeans are USA made from USA goods. They are
available online at By browsing their website you can order their products and read their business philosophy
which we found to be right on track with what our society needs. We have not purchased their product yet but will soon. USA made products are not readily available in stores but a search online for ‘made in USA’ revealed 416,000,000 sites. We need to support
each other. Collectively we can make a real difference for our mutual benefit.

Now it is time to get down from my soapbox and cease from speechmaking; we plan to be at the Piedmont Triad Farmers Market Saturday from 9:00 until 3:00. Along with our plants we will have some leaf lettuce and arugula from the greenhouse. From the field we have those sweet, tender, early spring greens in green kale, red kale, collards, upland cress, and perhaps a bit of
turnip and mustard. We have a good selection of grass-fed Jersey beef and pasture raised chicken. All beef roasts are still on sale for $5.00 lb. There is a good supply of free range farm eggs in
mostly xlarge and jumbo sizes. The chickens have picked up laying with the warmer temps and longer days. We had planned to be at the market on Sunday from 10:00 until 2:00 but the weatherman is calling for rain. So if it is pouring rain on Sunday we will have
to cancel. However, Saturday is a definite. Here’s hoping you will
come by the market to say ‘howdy’ and pick up some wonderful, delicious, healthy ‘real food’ for your

USDA and GMO Seed

We are absolutely enjoying the almost perfect weather the last few days! And it’s busy, busy, busy working the soil in the fields and planting lots of seeds in the greenhouse.

Seeds are amazing things. They come in all shapes and sizes with some so small they look almost like dust. And they appear to be dead dry plant material. But each seed contains a spark of life and when exposed to the right temperature and moisture conditions begins to grow and produce a living plant. In fact, almost all living things on earth, including humans, owes their very existence to the life that comes from seeds.

That is why it seems so unnatural and dangerous to manipulate the genetic make-up of seeds. Genetically modified plants (GMO) have been proven to transfer their alteration to nearby conventional plants. The corporate seed companies have patented their modifications and can test plants on farms to see if they contain their gene pattern. Farmers have been sued because their conventional crops have been contaminated by GMO crops nearby.

Now biotechnicians have come up with what is called a ‘terminator gene’. This simply means the seeds from plants containing this gene will not germinate. These seeds must come from the seed company because the seeds produced by the crop will not grow. It is possible that eventually a few seed companies will have absolute control of all the food producing seeds in the world.

And what happens if the ‘terminator gene’ transfers to conventional and native plants? All life on earth could be in jeopardy. Once GMO’s are introduced into the environment it is impossible to reverse.

Only organic farming prohibits the use of GMO’s. But even this may be at risk because of potential cross-contamination from GMO crops.

So far the USDA has given the green light to almost all GMO seed introductions. And most people don’t even know it is happening. The general public needs to inform themselves and pressure the government to be more cautious.

We plan to be at the Piedmont Triad Farmers Market on Saturday from 10:00 until 3:00. We have grass-fed Jersey beef, pasture raised chicken, free range farm eggs. All beef roasts are still on sale at $5.00 lb.

We will have some collard greens and upland cress.

Come on out and visit with us at the market.

September News From Peterson Farm


Wow! it has been a very busy summer! Up until now we have had a good growing season and it has kept us hopping! Some of you have wondered what happened to our newsletter and the simple fact is we just haven’t had time to write one. For some this will be your first e-news because we have finally caught up adding addresses to the listserv.

We had a great crop of summer vegetables and sales have been good. But the past few weeks the rain has completely stopped and the temperatures have been 10 to 15 degrees above normal. This has really hurt the late summer crops and fall greens. We have a small amount of arugula and mustard spinach along with some butternut squash, eggplant, okra, and potatoes. There is a chance of rain in the forecast for next week so we hope to have a variety of greens in a couple of weeks.

Our freezer is well stocked with pasture raised chicken including whole chickens, split breast, boneless/skinless breast, leg quarters, wings, backs, and necks. This flock was larger then usual because the processing plant was closed when we needed to process so we had to keep them longer. In fact, there are a few whole chickens around six pounds which would make a wonderful entree for a special gathering or for Thanksgiving. We have all chicken on sale at 10% off the regular price.

We have a good supply of pasture finished Jersey beef including steaks, roasts, ground beef, etc. Many of you like a sale so we have beef short ribs on sale ‘buy three, get one free’.

Although our hens have slowed down laying we have a limited supply of eggs from our pasture raised chickens. The hot weather and late season has lowered their production.

Our hours at the Piedmont Triad Farmers Market are Monday through Friday (10:00 until 2:00), Saturday (8:00 until 4:00), and Sunday (10:00 until 2:00).

We hope you will come see us at the market and take home some of the healthy delicious products we have for you!