Local Harvest Fruits & Vegetables

At Seven Springs Farm we grow fruits and vegetables for the retail market.    Our goal is to grow and harvest great tasting produce that you will be proud to serve to your family and friends.

We are incredibly picky.

Did you know that we hand-pick each and every item that we grow (from asparagus to yellow squash) and inspect it for quality?  We will stop harvesting produce the minute it starts to get tough or past its prime.  It must pass our high standards because we know that you expect nothing less.

Yes, we have heirloom varieties such as Lacianto Kale (a favorite of Thomas Jefferson and grown at Monticello), Red Ribbon beans, Turkey Crawl beans, and Cherokee Purple tomatoes, to name a few.  Others are hybrids which are disease resistant, requiring minimal or no insecticides or fungicides.

We take great pride in offering only the best quality produce for sale at our farm store and local farmers markets. We always have some new and interesting varieties to try.  Have you tried our Dinosaur Kale yet? We invite you to stop.

How We Grow Your Food

We Take This Responsibility Seriously

We stay on top of the latest sustainable agricultural practices and implement the ones that support our philosophy of never using systemic pesticides (where it would be taken into the cells of the plant).  We prefer to use organic practices.  We are strong advocates of a pest control method known as Integrated Pest Management (IPM – detailed below).

Every year we choose vegetables that will grow well in our East Tennessee climate.  We try to grow a very diverse range of vegetables to have for our farmers markets and farm store.  After choosing a specific vegetable to grow, we will then pick out different varieties of that vegetable.  We choose those that have the best resistance to diseases prominent in East Tennessee.  Then we will pick out the ones that have the best flavors, colors, and popularity.  We only buy the best seeds from the highest quality seed companies.
At Seven Springs Farm we strive to produce the healthiest produce that you can buy.  We do this by using only organic inputs into our garden.  We use no synthetic pesticides, no herbicides, and no synthetic fertilizers in the garden.  We also practice crop rotation to fend off the growth of fungus or mold that would build up in the soil if we did otherwise.  We plant cover crops, such as winter wheat or rye, to add nutrients back into the soil, add organic matter into the soil, and help reduce erosion.  We compost all of our scraps and work the “black gold” back into the soil.
Although we are not Certified Organic, we follow a strict management system that follows all organic practices.  We use no synthetic chemicals in the garden and grow no GMOs.  In the future we plan to become a Certified Organic Farm.
Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is an approach to pest control that focuses on pest prevention by eliminating the root causes of pest problems. When infestations are present and require immediate intervention, the safest, most effective methods available for the situation are chosen.

IPM follows a stepwise approach

Identification

The first step in solving any pest problem effectively and safely is the correct identification of the pest. It is critical to find out what kind of pests you have and where they are coming from. Since each pest has different habits, biology and life cycles, its positive identification will lead to more effective control.

Prevention and Exclusion

IPM uses disease and pest resistant crop varieties which either resist or tolerate key pests while yielding high quality produce with less pesticide use.  It uses cultural practices which decrease pest populations. Cultural controls include: crop rotation, mulching, managing water and fertilizer correctly, and plowing to turn under crop residues to destroy disease and organisms such as fungi and bacteria and the eggs of insect pests and slugs.  IPM uses sanitation to remove crop residues that may contain diseases and other pest problems, and it makes use of clean seed, transplants, and equipment.  IPM uses biological controls which are natural enemies of the pests. Certain beneficial insects may feed on the pest insects for example.

Monitoring

New infestations can be controlled best if spotted early. With IPM, pest populations are regularly monitored using traps. Pest sightings are recorded to document where and when the problems occur.

Multiple Tactics

IPM typically uses several non-chemical tactics to deal with the pest. Pesticides (many of which are organic) are used only as a last resort.

Because IPM focuses on prevention, it provides more effective, long-term control than a reactive, spray-based approach to pest control. It also reduces the need to use pesticides.

  • IPM protects public health and the environment by limiting pesticide use.
  • IPM reduces production costs, while maintaining high quality produce.

We Love Being Farmers!

drove a tractor to schoolRain or shine, you can find us on our farm growing produce year round (see our crop calendar).  The work on the farm never ends.  The soil must be prepared to make it ready to sustain new life.  The seeds and seedlings must be planted.  The plants must be watered and weeded.  And we must be ever vigilant to watch for pests and diseases so we can fend them off early.  And in everything we do, we try to do it in a way that respects the land so that it will sustain future generations.

We love it when you give us feedback, especially when you say your family loved it!  There is immense satisfaction interfacing with people like you who appreciate the effort and love that goes into our produce to make it the most healthy and delicious that we can.

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