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March 25, 2014 - Barb Barrett
I found another hidden gem in our rural community. On Saturday I took a drive with my husband to visit some local farms as we were seeking photos of local animals that are raised in this area and supply food to local restaurants and grocery stores. We found two in Turbotville. Landis Poultry Farms has a little store and I discovered I can buy free range eggs there all year round. I also bought some fresh lean turkey breasts and turkey sausage patties. They provide frozen and fresh poultry. Paul was trying to get a photo of the Tom Turkey, but he kept running away. Next we visited Beaver Run Poultry Farm in nearby Lewis Township where we saw pigs and chicks raised for local consumers. The owner said you can find his products at the Williamsport and Lewisburg Farmers Markets. Every week the poultry and pork are freshly cut. Now that's the way to eat. I know exactly where the food is coming from! And they don't advertise much, everything is by word of mouth according to the owners. Many of these farms are owned by the Amish and Mennonites. As we get closer to harvest season, I was informed that a drive on these back roads (behind Rt. 54) will present many stands selling fresh produce. In a report last May, the Royal Horticulture Society declared there is "an alarming shortage of skilled professionals." The globalization of food and flower trades has brought on a decrease of those wanting to major in horticulture. Living in this part of Pennsylvania, I would have never suspected that. I have 2 brothers who majored in agricultural science at Penn State University, however, since then agronomy and turf science have merged with the horticulturists to form the plant sciences department. So that means much is left up to the home gardener, and those who grew up on a farm. I hope our farmers will pass the skills and the science of growing fruits and vegetables to generations more to come. April is coming so now is a good time to plan your gardens. The Muncy and Hughesville Garden clubs are seeking new members and have some ideas to share with their upcoming programs and events. They could use some more help getting displays ready for the 2014 fairs. The ice is melting so get ready to start pruning and clearing those yards.


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