Just In From Tricycle Gardens

We just got in a ton of locally-grown, organic starter veggies from Richmond’s own Tricycle Gardens! Tricycle Gardens is a grassroots, environmental nonprofit organization focused on bringing agriculture, nutrition education and healthy food access to the urban core of Richmond, Virginia.  Founded in 2002 by three architects living in Church Hill who believed community gardens, and the simple act of growing food, were the fastest ways to transform the overall health of their community – both for the residents and the environment.

These starter herbs are available now for just $3.99 for a 6-pack. They’re a great way to start your summer harvest off right! Nothing’s better than a fresh, summer salad with locally grown greens! Come get ’em!

An Interview with Victory Farms

Late this past fall, our team went over to Victory Farms in Hanover County to say hello and check in on things. Victory Farms is now under the new ownership of a wonderful man that goes by Alistar Harris. Alistar grew up in a farming region in South Africa where his family relied on their backyard garden for food. He continues the solid mission of healthy, natural food and sustainability that Charlie and Gina Collins started. We sat down with Alistar for a few questions:

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Caromont Farm Local Cheeses!

We’re super excited to get in two new local goat cheeses from Caromont Farm in Esmont, Virginia! Caromont is located just 23 miles south of Charlottesville where their core values of sustainable farming start with a commitment to their animals and a strong connection to place.

Gail Hobbs Page is the owner and  cheese maker at Caromont Farm. Her cheeses enjoy a  local as well as a regional following, and are sold at Specialty Cheese Shops, Farmers Markets, and Fine Restaurants  throughout the Southeast. Caromont  holds true to  the  basic farmstead principles of cheese making– they source no outside milk, use no frozen curd, and all cheeses are hand ladled. They continually strive to develop the  terroir of Esmont  in their  cheeses through improving their soil fertility while practicing  holistic herd  practices.

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Saving Money on Organics…

Last week we had a little visit from WRIC TV8 where they asked us a simple question, “How do you save money on organics?” Here’s what we had to say:

1. Buy foods that are local and in season: When you purchase local and in season foods, you’re getting these items at their peak freshness and seasonal availability. Prices on foods that are in season tend to be much cheaper than buying foods out of season. When you add in the local factor, you end up not having to pay extra for transportation costs and you’re keeping money in your local economy.

2. Buy in bulk: Buying in bulk saves you money because you have the ability to get the exact amount you need. You’re also not paying the extra costs of packaging which saves much more than money. Buying in bulk creates far less waste than packaged foods, keeping plastics and materials out of the landfill. We also give a 10-cent container credit when you bring in your own empty container for bulk purchases.

3. Shop sale prices and use coupons: Our buyers work hard to provide you with competitive prices throughout our store. Look for the big yellow sale tags that indicate specials on delicious, organic items. We also offer money-saving coupons available at our registers. Most companies also offer printable coupons online on their websites.

Virginia Apples are In!

It’s that time of the year again! As the weather starts to cool down, fresh & delicious Virginia apples start to come in and orchards all over the state are bursting with color. If you haven’t had a chance yet to head west of Richmond and go apple picking, then what are you waiting for?

Until then, come by the store for some of Virginia’s finest apples from Crown Orchard, Fred Glaize Farm and more. We have some beautiful local Red and Golden Delicious apples on sale $4.99 for a 5lb bag.

An Apple Tree Grows in Suburbia

In a movement propelled by environmental concern, nostalgia for a simpler life and a dollop of marketing savvy, developers are increasingly laying out their cul-de-sacs around organic farms, cattle ranches, vineyards and other agricultural ventures. They’re betting that buyers will pay a premium for views of heirloom tomatoes—and that the farms can provide a steady stream of revenue, while cutting the cost of landscaping upkeep.

Why not line streets with almond and avocado trees, he asks, or replace shrubbery with cabbage and currants? Golf courses could plant their roughs with kale and corn. Lawns—where they must exist—could be edged with chives and herbs.

Read the rest of this article here.

Young Farmers will Rule the World!

The Greenhorns is a documentary about the courage and struggle of the current wave of young farmers in America. It’s about young people growing plants and raising animals for a living and breaking the mold of a corporate society. They’re taking risks and investing their own money into land, soil and safe, organic food production. The film was completed after almost 3 years in production. For more information on the film, visit The Greenhorn’s Website.

Come Get Your Basil Fix

Local, fresh Victory Farms Basil is in season right now. Stop by the store to get your fix – at just $2.99 a bunch, you definitely don’t want to miss out! If you would like to buy in bulk, we will also be taking special orders at customer service with a 10% discount, so don’t hesitate to ask.

“Basil, originally from India, is best known as a culinary herb prominently featured in Italian cuisine, and also plays a major role in the Northeast Asian cuisine of Taiwan and the Southeast Asian cuisines of Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos.” We recommend making a big batch of pesto, freezing it in an ice cube tray and saving it for later! Click here for a fresh, quick recipe.