Meet Your Farmers
I have been farming since 2008 and am perpetually swearing that I am done expanding and trying new things - all the while eyeing the next big project. I love how farming involves my mind, body and soul and never really gets boring. I am still trying to figure out how to walk away even when the chickweed is winning (because it is always winning) but I look forward to continuing to struggle towards that elusive work-life balance. After all these years it still truly amazes me that I can grow an onion from a tiny seed. I love picky weeding, crop planning, harvesting greens, suckering my tomatoes and cucumbers and talking about farming.
Trillium is just finishing her first year of college at UAF but still calls her mother to talk about flower varieties, sales outlets and marketing. But mostly flowers. Trillium is the one who always swore she would not be a farmer - until she discovered flower farming in 2019. She continues to be the driving force behind our ever-expanding flower business and is looking forward to learning more about design and events. She loves thinning seedlings, harvesting the bunchable crops, and most of all flowers. Whether she is harvesting or arranging, the flower beds are her happy place.
Leila can't remember a time when her life didn't involve farming. She dreams of a bigger better tractor and was hooked the first time she drove an excavator at the tender age of 11. Leila absolutely loves vegetables and has always been able to graze her way through the field like no one I have ever met. Leila is the reason we still and likely always will have cows. She is considering leaving the state to pursue an Ag degree once she graduates from High School. She loves farming, being outside and most forms of manual labor. She also loves harvesting and doesn't mind weeding.
About the Farm
At Sun Circle Farm I offer a large variety of fresh, high quality, USDA-Certified Organic produce and flowers. It is my belief that when I view the farm holistically and focus on putting in place complimentary systems encouraging healthy living soils and biologically diverse plant rotations, I move towards true sustainability.
I started the farm in 2011 with half a rough-tilled acre and no moose fence. Over the years we have steadily expanded. In 2021 we added yet another half-acre to accommodate our growing flower enterprise, bringing our total area under cultivation to about 2 1/2 acres behind a (usually effective!) moose-and-cattle fence. We currently have 4 passive covered structures and just built our first "real" greenhouse with heat and year-round cover. The years have seen us add an irrigation system, our second walk-in cooler, various new roof lines and additions to the harvest shed, and an ever-evolving array of new tools and techniques.
Recently I have been focused on applying techniques such as minimal tillage, occultation, mulching and flame weeding in an attempt to see how little tillage we can pull off in our cold soils. I am excited to view agriculture not only as an opportunity to produce healthy non-toxic nutrient-dense food for my community, but also to begin to address issues around climate change and carbon sequestration. Next on my wish-list are hedgerows and an expanding variety of perennial crops to further support not only our soil but the beneficial insects and birds that do so much to maintain a healthy balance in our little ecosystem.
Sun Circle Farm has been USDA Certified Organic since 2017, currently under Oregon Tilth. While I have been growing in accordance with the basic rules of organic agriculture since I began farming, pursuing Organic Certification allowed me to assure my growing customer base that I was truly committed to following ALL the rules. We undergo an annual site inspection and maintain thorough records of everything that we add to our soils or processes. I appreciate the opportunity to stand by my beliefs in the most transparent and accountable way currently possible. When I say that "I grow organically" it is not some watered-down convenient version that allows for chemical fertilizers or herbicides when things get challenging. When I say that I NEVER use chemical herbicides, pesticides, or fertilizers, I want my customers to be fully assured that I mean NEVER.
I love farming and take great pride in continuing to learn and to improve in order to bring you the best-tasting and healthiest fresh produce and flowers possible. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for supporting small scale sustainable agriculture, my family, and my farm.