Produce & Flowers

Solidago Farm

Owner: Nathaniel Taylor

Address:
531 Ground Hog College Rd
West Chester, PA 19382
Chester County

daytime phone: (610) 742-3085
evening phone: (610) 742-3085
Web site: http://www.solidagoorganics.com

Application Date: 2022-02-05

Applicant Details

Please briefly tell us why you are applying to be part of the Certified Naturally Grown program: *
We provide to our community and a wide audience at our farmers market and want to educate our customers on real food and what it means and takes to be a steward of the land. We have always used beyond organic practices & want to be able to show via certification that we take the standard seriously. Being able to present the CNG logo shows our commitment.
Are you currently third party Certified for your produce operation by any other organization (Organic, Biodynamic, etc)? *
no
Have you ever been certified in the past? *
no
Have you ever been denied certification? *
no
How did you hear about Certified Naturally Grown? *
Via the farming community
How did you learn to farm, and for how long have you been farming for market? What has prepared you to farm successfully according to CNG standards? *
We (Jessy & Nate) learned to farm by having our own personal gardens and our passions developing from there. Jessy has been growing food since she was 22 (now 31) and at the time managed an organic farm to table, beginning what was a life time passion of growing food with integrity. Nate got his start as a farm hand for a local organic farm and from there turned propagation manager at a local native plant nursery. We have both been farming organically for the last ~10 years, collectively 20 years of experience growing food. Both of us have learned most of what we know through hands on experience and personal research as well as taking a master class on organic market gardening held by Jean Martin Fortier. We started Solidago Farm January 2020 and have been growing for East Passyunk Farmers market in Philly.Through this journey of growing before we started our own farm and after, we have always held the land with high regard, working with it and not against, with the health of the soil our utmost importance.

General Farm Information

Farm Acreage you want listed as Certified Naturally GrownTM:
Total Farm Acreage you actually GROW on: *
2
Number of above acreage that you own: *
2
Number of above acreage that you lease: *
0
Do you have other acreage in "Conventional" Agricultural Systems? *
no
General Listed Acreage Breakdown
Veg Crops:
2
Fruit Crops:
Hay:
Grains/Beans:
Sugarbush:
Other Acreage:
Please check all items you grow and will market as Certified Naturally GrownTM *











Please Specify Any Other Items:
Please check all markets you grow for (this will be displayed on your farm profile to help potential buyers find you). *











Please Specify Other Markets:

Farmland Management and Practices

Primary Tillage System: *
BCS 749 walk behind tractor with tiller pdr, rotary plow & flail mower. Also broadfork
Do you use Cover Crops? *
yes
If yes, please list: *
Winter wheat, winter rye, oats, buckwheat, clover, pea, vetch, tillage radish, mixed variety annual seed
Do you use Compost? *
yes
If yes, please note general sources (on farm, purchased complete, local grass clippings, local dairy, etc.): *
purchase finished premium compost & we have a small compost system on site
Please list application rates. Give a specific amount or range (for example: one to two tons per acre, ten wheelbarrow loads per 1,000 square feet, or 1-2 inches deep). Do not answer "varies". *
.5-4 yds per 50ft bed
Do you use Manure? *
yes
If yes, please note general sources (local dairy, horse farm, etc.): *
we purchase a mix that contains organic dried chicken manure
Please list application rates. Give a specific amount or range (for example: one to two tons per acre, ten wheelbarrow loads per 1,000 square feet, or 1-2 inches deep). Do not answer "varies". *
40lbs per acre crop dependant
What time of year do you apply the manure? *
spring-fall during bed prep
Do you apply any non-composted Manure within 120 days of veg-crop harvesting? *
no
Please list any other brought in fertility sources that you use (specific rock powders, lime, soybean / alfalfa meal, specific purchased pre-mixes, etc)and how often it's used. If you indicate a name brand product, please also specify the ingredient/s. *
Fertrell Vegetable blend 5-3-4 aragonite, blood meal, bone char, crab meal, feather meal, kelp, peanut meal, sulfate of potash magnesium Alfalfa Meal Azomite Raw Supply Organic Trace Mineral Powder soluble potash, calcium, magnesium, chlorine, hydrated sodium calcium alluminosilicate
Have any chemical fertilizers been applied to the fields you are seeking Certification for in the last three years (36 months)? *
no
Have any non-acceptable pesticides and/or herbicides been applied to these fields in the last 3 years? *
no
Do you use Professional Soil Testing services? *
no
Describe your primary weed problems AND methods of control. Do not answer "none". You MUST indicate either actual weed challenges and/or LIKELY challenges, and you must ALSO indicate how you manage (or would manage) them. If you indicate a product, also specify how often it's used. *
We struggle with spring time mile a minute, summertime clumping grasses, gallensoga, chickweed clover, bindweed, thistle & horsenettle. Our methods of control to prevent weeds is initially tarping, uncovering & letting remaining weeds germinate and then tarp again. We then apply a layer of compost to smother anything left and plant into that prepped space. Once plants are established, we implement a regular hoeing schedule to stay ahead. If weeds end up getting out of control we hand weed or we eradicate the crop and start over.
Describe your primary insect challenges AND methods of control. Do not answer "none". You MUST indicate either actual pest challenges and/or LIKELY challenges, and you must ALSO indicate how you manage (or would manage) them. If you indicate a product, also specify how often it's used. *
Our biggest challenge is cabbage loopers, flea beetles & allium leaf miners. Our methods of control is covering new plants with insect netting until established. Once uncovering (if ever) we implement a spray schedule of BT (Bacillus thuringiensis). If infestation, we spray every week for three weeks straight to kill the cycle. Normally, every 2 weeks. We also companion plant where we can.
Describe your primary disease challenges AND methods of control. Do not answer "none". You MUST indicate either actual disease challenges and/or LIKELY challenges, and you must ALSO indicate how you manage (or would manage) them. If you indicate a product, also specify how often it's used. *
Powdery Mildew on flowers, cucurbits & squash. We mitigate by planting early to produce marketable crops before powdery mildew levels are too high in the season. we spray Mil-stop (potassium bicarbonate) and Cease (bacillus subtilis), both biological fungicides on flowers and tomatoes, every 2 weeks, to prevent any disease.
Please list the water source you use for crop irrigation. If source is public river, pond or lake, please note the name: *
well
Are there any known contaminants in the irrigation water? *
no
Are you a maple producer who seeks to certify your sugarbush? *
no

Seeds, Transplants and Buffers

How do you select your seeds? CNG standards call for growers to make a good faith effort to locate organically grown seeds by contacting at least 3 major suppliers. *
We select seeds based off what we have grown in the past & take inspiration from the admirable farmers in our community. We look for reliable sources that produce and breed with integrity. We lean towards varieties that are naturalized to our area. We use trusted sources such as Johnnys, Baker creek heirloom seeds, high mowing, Kitazawa seeds; all companies that align with our philosophy.
Do you purchase or grow using any Genetically Modified seeds? *
no
Do you use any chemically treated seeds in your operation? *
no
Do you grow your own transplants? *
yes
Do you purchase potting soil, or do you mix your own on the farm? *
purchase
What ingredients does your potting mix contain? If you purchase a mix, please also indicate which product. *
HiDra 2 Seed Starter Mix from Summer Creek Farm and/or Vermont Compost
Are all of your transplants grown according to CNG standards, without synthetic fertilizers or wetting agents? *
yes
If any transplants are not grown according to CNG standards, please list them here. (If they all are, put "N/A".) This produce may not be marketed as Certified Naturally Grown. *
n/a
Do you purchase any transplants from outside sources? *
no
Chemical/Spray Drift and Buffers:
Is there any likelihood of Chemical/Spray drift contamination of your fields? *
no
Do you have an adequate buffer to protect yourself from potential contamination? *
yes
Please describe your buffer. Be as specific as possible. On all sides, how far is it from your crops to the next closest use (road, conventional crop, residential yard)? Be sure to specify what is grown on neighboring land that is in agricultural use. For example: To the north and east, a wooded area of at least 100 yards separates us from the neighbor's corn fields, to the south is a fallow field at least 100 yards deep separating us from the road, and to the west about 60 feet separates our crops from a field where conventional corn and soybeans are grown. *
Our 2 acre vegetable plot is located in the middle of 40 acres of wooded land. The closest road is at least 300 yards away and separated by forest. There is no agriculture happening nearby.

Agreements

Please indicate your agreement with the following statements by checking the boxes.
I will not label, or in any way lead consumers to believe that produce not raised in accord with CNG standards is Certified Naturally GrownTM. *
I understand that I have to complete at least one (and hopefully more) Certification Inspection(s) of another farm in my area each year, and that the inspection will NOT be of the same farmer that inspected me. *
I have reviewed the Certified Naturally Grown certification standards, I understand them, and I will abide by them. I understand that if I have any questions I may contact CNG for clarification. *
You may use this space to tell us anything else you think we should know about your farm: