Roadtrippin': From farm to table, a salad's journey
On a recent Friday morning, Emily Garrity picked myself and photographer Albert Lutan up from the airport. We packed all our stuff - two huge backpacks, a 25 pound camera, a light kit and a 30 pound tripod along with its case - inside her small pickup truck and headed up Olson Mountain Road.
A little less than a mile from her home, Twitter Creek Farm, we carried our gear, because old, dirty and slushy snow stopped us from being able to drive all the way in.
Garrity promised hot tea with honey, from her bees, as soon as we arrived.
"I wish I made some fresh muffins," Garrity said, as we took off our Xtratufs in her mudroom.
A flock of fat chickens, named Mildred, Mary, Connie and Peaches, clucked nearby, hoping for some fresh kale or other treats, from the farm.
Garrity and her farm are in the early stages of the growing season. The next few months will be intense, as the farm comes alive with salad mixes, kale, onions and just about every vegetable you can imagine.
"In the fall, starting in mid-August all the way through September, we're probably harvesting maybe 2,000 pounds of produce a week," Garrity said. "So I bet upwards 20,000 pounds of produce [will] come out of this farm - that's on an acre and a half, so it's a pretty small area. But because we bio-intensively farm the plot, we're packing a lot of vegetables into a small amount of space, with a really high concentration on soil health."
Garrity, who graduated from college with a photography degree, realized she wanted to be a farmer pretty early on.
"I fell in love with working with plants, working the soil and being outside everyday," Garrity said. "I think that was a big part of it, and I think I just realized I like physical work."
She says her success starts with the high quality soil. Emily does everything by hand, from weeding to harvesting.
The people who buy her produce say it's that attention to detail that makes Emily's produce a superior quality.
"Oh it's so much tastier," Karri Thurman, one of the owners of Two Sister's Bakery in Homer said. "It really makes all the difference."
for the recipe.