I can't believe we bought our own elderberry farm in Missouri!
I can't believe we bought our own elderberry farm in Missouri! Is this real?
That’s the question my partner and I have been asking ourselves the last few days. If you haven’t heard yet….we bought a farm.
I'm a big believer that when you put out what you are looking for the universe brings it to you and it’s up to you to go for it.
When playing around in my kitchen I never imagined there not being enough berries. But that’s the situation. Elderberries have become famous in their own right these past few years. Their list of benefits and specifically antiviral benefits and high levels of antioxidants make it a very desired crop.
These fresh berries are what makes our elixir is so special. Most syrups on the market are made with dry European berries. We chose to use fresh berries because we live in Missouri, which is one of the largest growers of elderberries in the country so we were able to buy fresh local berries right from the farmer. We all prefer the flavor and mouthfeel of the elixir with the fresh berries. Its just juicier and smoother, The kids can’t get enough!
So our options were, switch to European dried berries or grow our own berries. Growing our own berries guarantees we always have fresh berries and we can grow them using organic practices. This is a huge deal. Plus anything extra we can supply our community and other businesses.
We have been struggling to find berries towards the end of the season. They are in high demand and it’s not easy to find American, especially Missouri berries. Then almost magically we got a call about a farm that just popped up on the market. I guess the universe’s solution to our berry problem was to grow our own. It was mid-March when we went to see the farm the first time during the height of the pandemic, the country is panicking and so are we. Should we really buy a farm in the middle of a pandemic when we have no idea how this will turn out? Nothing like jumping right into the deep end. So, we bought a farm, wish us luck!
Now, to get farming…. It takes a few years for elderberry plants to mature. These next few weeks for us will have to be all about getting the land ready for planting. We need to get plants in the ground in the fall so we don’t lose another year. Not only did we jump in now the race is on. We need to find the right people to help us do this the right way. Our plan is to have an organic berry. So everything is extra tricky. If we let the farmer across the way put his cows on the fields to eat the hay and fertilize the ground then we have to make sure that whatever those cows ate prior is also organic. Once we figure out how to prep the fields for planting we also need to get an irrigation system in place. The baby plants will need to be watered regularly.
Prep fields, figure out a water source, buy plants, find the right farmer to teach us, and help us get the first acre in.
Maybe you don’t want to give out this information but I was just curious what part of Missouri your farm is in? We live in Washington. I have a friend who helps out on an elderberry farm so just wondered if you were close to that at all. Watershed Farms. I think they are in New Haven.