Rosie's Organic Farm - Gainesville - Alachua County - Florida
Plowshares CSA is a self-organized community of consumers who are dedicated to the production of local, sustainably grown foods. By joining the CSA, members receive a share of locally produced vegatables, fruits, and/or flowers. Shares are delivered at local farmers' markets and ensure that members receive the freshest possible produce, locally grown, and appropriate to the season and locality.
By purchasing a food share in advance of the harvest, we provide our farmer with a dependable income. CSAs promote a sustainable local economy that will keep agriculture as a viable aspect of the community.
Organic production renews the soil, protects our waters from agricultural runoff, and avoids adding to the chemical burden which all organisms carry as a result of massive use of pesticides and herbicides in conventional agriculture. In Florida, runoff from industrial applications of chemicals and fertalizers poses a significant threat to the quality of our springs and underground water supplies.
Plowshares is committed to providing education concerning food and food systems to its members and the wider community. Plowshares is committed to supporting our farmer in providing training for apprentice farmers.
We seek to find sponsors so as to enroll low income families as full members of our community.
After preparing the fields for the start of the season, farmers Rose Koenig and Tom Murti plant seedlings.
In a few weeks, the crops begin to shape up for growing season.
Flowers are planted along side the vegatable crops to promote pollination. Flowershares are avalable to CSA members for an additional fee.
As vegetables reach maturity, Rose's family, along with interns and CSA volunteers, harvest what is necessary to fill CSA shares. Remaining produce will be sold to the general public at Gainesville's farmers' markets and to local restaurants that utilize organic produce in their cooking.
Plowshare members pick up their shares at the downtown Gainesville market on Wednesdays or at the Haile Plantation market on Saturday mornings.
Organic farming in Florida presents special challenges. Mid-summer heat and insects prevent year-round crops. By the start of July, Rose will till under the last of the spring season's growth and plant groundcover crops that will promote soil health. As soon as the cooler weather returns, she will prep the fields for planting again and start the cycle over.