Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) at Radical Roots Farm!
2013 CSA Registration is available!
photo (c)Norm Shafer
Certified Organically Grown produce direct form our farm to your table, every week!
Community Supported Agriculture cultivates and nurtures a beneficial partnership among farmers, community members and the land. CSA members join our farm in a mutual commitment for the season: Farmers produces nutritious, organic food while the members share in the risks and benefits of the production and harvest.
When joining Radical roots CSA, you purchase a share of the harvest before the growing season begins. Your investment helps to cover the up-front operating costs and in return you receive all the bounty of the harvest.
Fresh, Local and Organic
CSA is the freshest way to receive vegetables because they are delivered moments after harvest. By investing in Radical Roots CSA you support the local economy and get the benefit of knowing how and where your food is grown. CSA members recieve a 10% discount at our market stand!
Share the Surplus
Radical Roots means digging down deep into our community. Unfortunately, our economy makes locally grown organic produce inaccessible to low-income individuals and families. Thankfully, Radical Roots CSA is about working together to grow food in quality not quantity. We believe this quality food is important enough to share with those equally deserving. Your membership helps to provide two free vegetable shares to low-income families through the Patchwork Pantry food bank.
How much is in a share each week?
There is between 9 & 12 different items. The share has a structure that is consistent even though there is a lot of diversity.
There is always one fresh cut herb (basil, parsley or cilantro and others)
Thers is always a salad green (salad mix, head lettuce or cut lettuce mix)
There is always a Cooking green (Kale, chard, cabbage, spinach or bok choi)
There is always an Allium (scallions, garlic, onions or leeks)
There is usually a root (radish, beets, or carrots)
Then there are the Fruits of summer with a lot of them starting in July! (tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and squash)
What if I go on vacation?You have two options, 1. have a friend or nieghbor pick up in your abscense, or 2. after the pick up time expires the vegetables will be donated to the patchwork pantry food bank.
How can I experience the farm?Everyone is invited to our annual havest party and all CSA members are welcome to pick your own herbs and flowers on the farm (Please call to schedule).
Radical Roots Ready To Grow
By Jenny Jones
Dave O`Neill of the Radical Roots Community Farm stands in an ice-covered field. In a few months the cooperative farm will begin planting again, distributing the produce June through October.
Photo by Pete Marovich
KEEZLETOWN Farming can be an expensive endeavor that includes a lot of risks. But one local couple has made their farm a community effort that, they say, helps minimize those risks for the farmer while benefiting the consumer.
Lee and Dave O`Neill began Radical Roots Community Farm about seven years ago on a rented plot of land in Port Republic. About three years ago, the couple purchased a house and five acres at the farm`s current location in Keezletown.
The farm is a cooperative made up of about 35 members who purchase shares for $475 at the start of the growing season, the O`Neills said. That money helps pay for the costs associated with the farm, including the farmers` salaries, they said.
In return, shareholders receive fresh produce every week from the first Tuesday in June through mid-October, the O`Neills said. Each half-bushel includes tomatoes, leafy greens, herbs, peppers, fruits and other organically grown produce depending on what`s in season, they said.
Community farming "watches out for the farmer ... you don`t have to go into debt this way," Lee O`Neill said. "But, also, the consumer gets really good vegetables."
As this year`s growing season approaches, the O`Neills said they want to inform people about the benefits of community farming and attract more members to Radical Roots.
The couple will hold an informational meeting and sign-up session at 7 p.m. today at Massanutten Regional Library, 174 S. Main St., Harrisonburg.
The O`Neills said they hope to increase the farm`s membership by at least 15 people this year, and they anticipate that one day the membership will be up to 100.
The farm attracts members from as far away as Staunton and Edinburgh, but most live in Harrisonburg, they said. The couple said they attribute the farm`s appeal to its variety and freshness of its bounty.
"We grow a lot of things you can`t get from the grocery," Dave O`Neill said. "We deliver it moments after it`s harvested, so it`s super fresh."
Sharing The Bounty
Radical Roots grows dozens of varieties of tomatoes, several different types of lettuce, a handful of fruits and lots of other veggies, the O`Neills said.
Members can pick up their half-bushel shares from the farm or from a location in downtown Harrisonburg, where the farm drops them off, the couple said. Each share feeds two to three adults and has an average cost of about $24 a week, they said.
The farm donates surplus produce to the Patchwork Pantry food bank in Harrisonburg to benefit low-income families, Lee O`Neill said. Each member of the farm is asked to donate a dollar a week, or $20 a season, to pay for the surplus shares, she said.
Shareholders also have the opportunity to purchase a share of eggs from the farm`s free-range laying hens. Each share of eggs is $60 a year, the couple said.
Jennifer Edwards, 36, of Harrisonburg, has been a member of Radical Roots for three years. She said she enjoys being a member because it`s convenient and she likes supporting local agriculture.
"It`s so easy," Edwards said. "It`s great to get a bag full of vegetables that are grown locally and organically."
The only downfall to being a member is when the growing season ends and fresh produce is no longer available, Edwards said.
"It`s kind of sad in October when it ends," she said. "Then I have to go back to buying vegetables at the store."
To Learn More
Contact Jenny Jones at 574-6286 or email@example.com
Courtesy of Jenny Jones and the Daily News-Record - article can be found at: www.rocktownweekly.com