Page 15

INDUSTRY Down East provides marketing and distribution, as well as educates farmers on industry standards. “We give produce boxes at cost in an effort to get produce to market undamaged,” says Zach LaVere, Food Hub manager. “We also work with a local food bank to supply excess eggs in an effort to combat food waste. We are hoping to take vegetable donations to food banks this fall.” Sessions and his assistant, Micah Bland, are planning for fall by helping Graham Cole with the Wilgrow community garden on the corner of Castle and 4th streets. Cole is using earthworm castings, “nature’s fertilizer,” to enrich the soil, plus amendments from Green Seasons Garden Center. “I’m planting 700 cabbage, collard, and cabbage-collards (a variety of collard that forms a tight plant like a cabbage),” Cole says. “The

photo by Lindsey Miller Photography

Using products from Green Seasons, Rouse organically cultivated 5 acres of the family farm, “Daisy-May,” in Teachey, NC. The farm of roughly 150 acres dates back to the early 1800s for the Rouse and Wells (his mother’s maiden name) families. This year Rouse is selling his organic harvest to three farmers’ markets in the greater Wilmington area: Poplar Grove, Wrightsville Beach and River Bluffs at Porch’s Café (Castle Hayne). He enjoys talking with customers and sharing organic farm practices. His harvest includes red-skin potatoes, sun-gold grape tomatoes, German Johnson, Cherokee Purple, Taxi (a yellow tomato), Mortgage Lifter heirloom (a pink variety), San Marzano Roma, and Red Morning tomatoes. He sells Clemson spineless okra, flat Dutch and Jersey pointed-head cabbage, watermelon, and French breakfast radishes. “I start with Harmony fertilizer, which is mostly nitrogen, and sidedress with bone meal,” Rouse says. “After getting a free soil test at the New Hanover County Arboretum, I also spray calcium, if needed. For weed control, I use a one-row cultivator, which attaches to my tractor and turns the weeds upside down. Any weeds left are handpulled and chopped with a hoe. Spinosad and Dipel are used for insect control if necessary.” Rouse is proud of the eggs produced by his Coturnix Quail. They are cage-free and fed a non-medicated feed and supplemented with crushed oyster shells, kale and crickets. His eggs, green tomatoes and Romanesco broccoli, a rare and desirable vegetable, are sold through the Feast Down East Food Hub at the historic train depot in Burgaw. Feast Down East—a nonprofit that works with local farmers— helps place farmers’ products in restaurants, health food and grocery stores. Farmers take their produce to the hub twice a week. Feast

photo by: Lindsey A. Miller Photography

photo by: Melissa Clupper

photo by: Lindsey A. Miller Photography

Reservations needed Friday & Saturday nights (reservations only held for 15 minutes)

(910) 796-8687 4724 New Centre Dr #5 Wilmington, NC 28405 Closed Mon. • Tues.-Fri. 11:30am-2:00pm, 5:00pm-9:30pm Sat. 11:30am-2:30pm, 5:00pm-9:30pm • Sun. 5:00pm-9:00pm

“Home of the Legend”

5046 New Centre Dr. (910) 859-7374 Full menu until 2 a.m., 7 days a week SUMMER-FALL 2017 | DEVOUR 15

Devour Summer/Fall 2017  

Eat and drink across southeastern NC