Meet Two Trees Farm, one of the 11 new farms on ASAP’s Farm Tour. Two Trees Farm practices intensive agriculture and crop rotation and has a working blacksmith shop on their property. From now until September tune in for Farm Tour news, special offerings, and more farmer profiles.
Dustin Cornelison and Sara Martin of Two Trees Farm will join ASAP for the 2014 Farm Tour, opening their mountain valley homestead and farm to the public. Originally from Kentucky, Dustin and Sara moved to Western North Carolina while Sara attended graduate school at Western Carolina University. The couple decided to remain in the area after Sara completed her master’s degree in biology, and they settled onto a somewhat neglected property in the Beaverdam area of Canton, NC. For the past six years, the couple have strived to rehabilitate their land to its natural state and to create a learning space for sustainable living. Now an environmental biology instructor at Haywood Community College, Sara loves to share their lifestyle with youth in her community.
Committed to working with the land, Sara and Dustin have embraced their property’s steep landscape by planting native fruit orchards and beautiful garden plots terraced with recycled highway guardrails. They also built a geodesic dome greenhouse which has enabled them to cultivate heirloom tomatoes, dwarf avocados and pomegranates. By practicing intensive agriculture and crop rotation, they are now able to grow about 60 percent of the fruit and vegetables that they consume.
In addition to teaching others about how to live sustainably, Dustin and Sara have a passion for providing people with the physical tools to do so. After taking extensive classes and acquiring third-generation equipment from a retired blacksmith, they created a fully functioning shop where they make hand tools, fences, garden trellises and knives. “These are tools that you will have for the rest of your life,” Sara said.
Two Tree Farms’ tools and heirloom garden starts can be found at Haywood’s Historic Farmers Market. They also plan to offer a variety of classes in the near future. Possible classes include: setting up a garden, preserving the harvest with canning and drying, and living sustainably with your community (a schedule will be available during the Farm Tour).
While visiting Two Trees Farm during this year’s farm tour, participants can expect to experience fruit orchards, organic vegetable and herb gardens, and a geodesic dome and greenhouse. In addition, visitors will learn about raising chickens, bees and fish as well as blacksmithing techniques. The tour will also feature a scavenger hunt and a nature hike.
This post was written by Hayley Lawrance, ASAP’s communications intern.