Community Philosphy Blog and Library

HOMEGROWN Life: A Farmer’s Recap of the Season






While summer’s been coming to a close, we’ve been working tremendously hard lately out in the fields, at the markets, and around town, so I figured a recap of the season in order this month.

You might already know that our grow space at our homestead in Missouri is around 1/10 of an acre. While it’s surprising to see the bounty such a small space can produce, we started searching earlier this year for ways we could acquire more land on which to grow more crops. Our search ended once we met Virgil and his wife, Margaret – farmers in nearby Fenton, Missouri (St. Louis County) whose property spans 500 acres in the middle of subdivisions and strip malls.

We’ve been renting a few acres from Virgil and Margaret, and if you follow us on Twitter or Facebook, you might have already seen photos of what our plot looks like and the transformation its undergone while in our care.

Also, if you follow us elsewhere on the internet, you might have noticed the shiny, red, apple of Justin’s eye these days: Our fully restored Farmall A tractor. It’s been our most exciting farm-related purchase to-date, and one that Justin spent countless time researching. The tractor runs like a champ, and it’s already proven to be a terrific help with working the modest acreage we have.

While the summer’s been full of milestones and successes for our farm, the weather seems to be the only real hindrance to our performance this year. Earlier in the season, it was nothing but rain, and the ground remained so soaked that it significantly delayed us being able to get plants in the ground. Ever since, it feels like we’ve been playing catch-up, trying to find other ways to compensate for crops that never reached their full peak. The sweltering heat of July and August didn’t do much to help matters, but now that things seemed to have cooled off, we’re eagerly watching our fall crops grow and mature. While we had planned on our thousands of tomato plants producing record numbers of fruit for us this year, the weather issues serve to reinforce the fact that we can’t predict nature and we can’t guarantee yields. …we can only look forward with hope for a flourishing fall season.


“I’m half of YellowTree Farm, an urban homestead that I founded with my husband in late 2008.  Together, we grow vegetables and raise animals on less than 1/10 of an acre in St. Louis, Missouri.  I don’t have children.  I have animals, which is kind of the same thing as being a parent, except I eat my babies.”

One Response to “HOMEGROWN Life: A Farmer’s Recap of the Season”

  1. So I was going to send you two an email earlier about whether you were renting more land but for some reason I had held off. Thanks for writing this and keeping us all up to speed.

Leave a Reply