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They inspect their plants regularly for insects and find that a Neem oil spray is helpful for outbreaks of aphids.


During the colder months, the potting-up takes place in a heated cold frame adjacent to the tarms house. Tomatoes are by far the most popular valey they sell. Most vegetables have a short shelf life and a quick turn-around. And the cycle begins again. But the majority, she hopes, will end up in the hands of capable Texas gardeners, thriving in a well-tended garden, where they will be allowed to grow and flourish and ultimately reach their botanical potential.

Because they live between a river and a creek, and because they grow so many edibles, Sam and Cathy have always taken a more natural approach to raising their plants. Heavy, dark clouds surrounded the nursery. As their customer base grew, so did the demand for plants. As Sam recounts, there was Wife want hot sex Prairie View much reference material available gabrie, the time fars growing organically, and much of their day-to-day operations developed from trial and error.

We asked them to share their thoughts about organic production and certification. Before they met, Sam and Cathy had separate careers in the nursery and landscape trade.

Gabriel valley farms pioneer organic nursery

We also needed a fertilizer. Gardening in much of Texas is a year-round activity, and the demand for transplants is constant. She begins every morning with a quick check of the seedlings as she enters the propagation house. Did you find support during your switch to certified organic? Ninety-nine percent of what we grow is fully certified organic. Because the native plants surrounding the property are full of beneficial insects, they have always tried to avoid the use of valleu pesticides.

The other challenges they mentioned were learning and adapting to the changes that arose with the National Organics Program standards.

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As I wrapped up my interview with Sam and Cathy and headed for the door, tiny raindrops began to fall. Since concentrating their focus on vegetables and herbs a few years ago, Sam and Cathy made the decision to apply for organic certification of their edible plants.

This year they are offering something rather unconventional for the area — rhubarb transplants. Inthey began the process of becoming a certified organic nursery. By thinking outside the box and growing rhubarb as a fall-to-summer annual, gardeners in Central, East and South Texas are discovering that rhubarb can be grown successfully in a backyard garden. The folks at Gabriel Valley Farms in Central Texas valley pioneers in organic certified wholesale nursery production.

Fatal mistakes come easy — too much water, not enough water, too much heat, too much cold, not enough light — if left unattended for even a day the lives of these plants are in jeopardy.

Gabriel valley farms: a behind-the-scenes look

Cathy and Sam Slaughter have been serving Central Texas retail garden centers, landscape companies, and farmers with certified organic plants since During peak season there can be more than 60, seedlings filling the tables of the propagation house, but that does not intimidate Reggi. They built additional greenhouses and cold frames, added heaters, and hired full-time help.

She orders seeds by the thousands, and keeps them organized alphabetically in a file cabinet. At the beginning of the certification process, Cathy and Sam had no idea there would be so much record keeping and documentation required.

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With our emphasis on growing edible plants, being certified organic just seemed like the logical direction to go. Our supplier talked with the professor who was making the conventional mix we had such success with and babriel finally had our soil. In most cases they are ready to make the jump to 4-inch pots in just a few short weeks, and she cheerfully bids them farewell, knowing that she has done her part to get them off to a good start.

They have one propagation house and one propagator, Reggi Adult singles dating in Cove, and she is a master at it. We believe in organic growing practices and wanted to assure our customers that they were purchasing a healthy, natural product from us.

We all smiled at the thought of rain, especially, Sam. Less work watering, for sure, and more time to tackle the endless chores from his mental checklist. At the time, no organic or natural options were available. Certification application requires numerous hours to complete. The business started with herbs, perennials, a small selection of bedding plants, one greenhouse and two dedicated, organic-minded, hard-working employees — Sam and Cathy.

With the exception of lavender, which they start from plugs, all of the vegetable and herb transplants from Gabriel Valley Farms are gabriell or propagated from cuttings on site.

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Once they found a supplier willing to blend a soil mix to their specifications using organic ingredients which include peat moss, vermiculite, composted pine bark and fertilizer flakesthey were able to submit the paperwork to the Texas Department of Agriculture. Lucky for us, if our seed starts should meet an early and, of course, always unintentional demise, we can easily go out and purchase replacements.

Hot women wants nsa Clarion Valley Farms received official organic certification of their vegetable and culinary herb transplants in October, Some are destined to end up in the hands of inexperienced or inattentive gardeners, abandoned and ignored.

But what about those folks whose job it is to provide a steady supply of transplants to our local nurseries, the folks who spend their days tending to greenhouses full of little plants, all screaming for attention?

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Sam and Cathy complement each other perfectly. They received their certification through the Texas Department of Agriculture in They keep their eyes and ears open for vegetable recommendations and try to sell proven performers as well as varieties that are new to the gardening scene. On the weekend they would vaoley in to water the plants and take inventory, and when the temperatures dipped below freezing, Sam would come over twice a night, at 2 a.

Greenhouse-nursery growing is a completely different process and it is hard to supply data on the forms that reflects that. Once we figured out those parts with the help of our supplier, we worked on the application through Texas Department of Agriculture. It took some time and effort to get through the process; the biggest hurdle was finding an organic supplier of gabriep mix, which Cathy orders by the truckload.

He spends much of his Online dating for relationships passing through each of the 19 greenhouses, hose in hand, visually inspecting the plants, making mental notes about inventory and tending to maintenance issues. At our volume of use, we were making soil all the time. Marketing ourselves has been a big lesson. They soon added cole crops, lettuces and Asian greens.

Sam fertilizes the transplants weekly with an organic mixture of fish emulsion, liquid seaweed and molasses.