We are excited about our newest addition to the farm – ASPARAGUS. We will operate this part of the farm under the business name of “Spears To You” a division of Conifera LLC.
With the success of our test plots last year we decided to plant an acre of asparagus. That’s a total of over 7500 plants. The variety that grew the best turns out to be one of the best varietals was chosen. Jersey supreme. The field was chisel plowed and diced to prepare the soil for planting and soil amendments were added based on our soil tests. This acre will be ready for first harvest around the first week of May 2019. We are adding additional acres of asparagus during the 2019 spring planting season.
In addition to all of the field work we also finished construction in the new pole barn of a USDA GAP principles designed Asparagus processing plant. Diana and I both became certified in USDA GAP. The new room is designed like new dairies or other food processing centers with total cleanliness as a top priority.
Everything from the PVC wall and ceiling panels, waterproof lighting and electric, stainless steel triple sinks and equipment was done with attention to detail and a clean space. Our plant is equipped with a walk in cooler and a hydro-cooler designed to drop the temperature of harvested asparagus down as quick as possible to obtain the freshest product. We also traveled to France last year to purchase an Asparagus processing machine that washes, cuts and sorts asparagus by size. We are the first farm in the USA to have this piece of equipment. Every detail of asparagus has production has been looked at from species type to plant, to growing maintaining and harvesting the spears. After harvest we wanted the best on farm asparagus processing room we could obtain and we have succeeded in that commitment to excellence. We even worked with a local box company to develop a carton capable of being recycled yet have the waterproof characteristics of wax lined traditional produce boxes that will not break down in land fills. All of our cartons this year will feature the new corrugated material that will recycle.
We will begin selling asparagus this year out of the shop in the pole barn around the first week of May 2019. It will be available fresh in quantities in one pound increments while supplies last for approximately one month. If you are a wholesaler, restaurant owner with farm to table needs, or a CSA operator with product needs we have boxes of asparagus available in 11 or 30 lb quantities. You can call 630-779-6249 to discuss your needs or schedule a time to come out and check us out.