We are a family farm consisting of three generations. Produce is grown on Matt’s parent’s farm in DeForest, WI. Both Matt and Tracy grew up on farms. I (Matt) grew up growing cash crops with my parents. We mainly grew corn, soybeans, wheat, alfalfa and oats. Tracy grew up on a dairy farm in Sun Prairie. Her parents are still involved in dairy farming.
Fresh market produce became part of my families crops when my sister went to College in 1997. My parents were looking for a way to supplement their income and help my sister with college. They sold sweet corn at a road side stand on HWY CV near the truck stops in Dane County. We continue to offer sweet corn and the rest of our fruits, veggies and flowers in the same location.
We started adding other produce, more as a hobby in 2010. Watermelons were our first venture into fresh produce. The second year we added more watermelon, muskmelon and honeydew. The years after have seen the number and amount of produce we grow increase substantially. We are currently growing around 45 different veggies and fruit along with numerous flowers.
All of our family is involved in one way or another. My three older children Anna, Josef and Jakob did a lot of the more manual work this year. Planting, picking and packing are all hard work. Their help has been invaluable. The younger children Abby, Johann, Helena, Heinrich, Erika and Stella all like to help in their own way. They are very good at planting seeds. Abby is excellent at picking strawberries. Johann loves to “drive the tractor” with papa and dad.
Our love for our family also influences how we grow our produce. We always try to use the least amount of chemicals possible. This means we use organic sprays first and only when needed. When we have insect problems that we can not control we sometimes need to resort to conventional sprays, but it is rare that this is necessary. We normally do not use any herbicide on our produce crops. We want our children to be able to help in the field without worrying about chemicals.