Spotlight on King’s Hill Farm – “Building a Sustainable Future”
Most growers that operate a CSA try to get a jumpstart on the growing season to provide the greatest amount of goods to its members. When Jai and Joel Kellum founded King’s Hill Farm in 2008, they knew they needed a controlled growing environment to combat the unpredictable Wisconsin spring weather.
“2009 was our first year of production, and we had plenty of field space to fill,” explains Jai, “so it was imperative that we had a couple of greenhouses where we could start our transplants.” To aid in propagation and transplanting, the Kellums purchased two Solar Star Gothic Style Greenhouses, one 34′ x 96′ and the other 34′ x 48′, from FarmTek.
Since installing the greenhouses, Jai says, “Our transplants have consistently outperformed our direct seeded crops. They have a leg up on weeds, insect pests, and if they’re properly hardened off—which we also use one of the greenhouses for—they handle the weather just fine.” The greenhouses also serve as a winter habitat for some of the farm’s livestock, including ducks and llamas, when the temperature reaches as low as -40°.
At King’s Hill Farm, “building a sustainable future” is the motto. The organic farm focuses on growing wholesome and healthy vegetables, fruits, herbs and flowers, or as Jai puts it, “nearly everything that grows under the southern Wisconsin sun.” The Kellums aim “to farm the earth with harmony and respect of natural limitations, and to ensure food security by sharing the bounty of the harvest with the community,” Jai explains.
The greenhouses have worked out well for the Kellums, and Jai says, “We are happy that we have them up and going. They have allowed us to get a jump on the season with tens of thousands of plants, and start supplying our CSA and wholesale accounts with a wide variety of produce, starting at the beginning of June.”
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