Another busy year has galloped past at Fountain House Farm at High Point. After the snow and ice of the early months, we looked forward to cultivating the garden once again. We grew all the vegetables that had worked well the previous year – like tomatoes, spinach, potatoes, garlic, onions and zucchini – and produced an abundance of healthy food for the Culinary and Wellness Units to process in Fountain House.
The apple orchard was a huge success this year! Thanks to all the members who helped, The Apple Grower, and Steven Pike’s extensive research, we produced 75 gallons of delicious apple cider, not to mention all the apples we sent to Wellness for juicing and for the wonderful Thanksgiving apple pies. These fresh untainted fruit may not look so perfect, but their flavor speaks for itself.
We also grew flowers to beautify Fountain House. This is a work in progress, and it’s definitely been a steep learning curve for us. The spring flowers, such as tulips and daffodils, worked really well, and some of the cutting flowers were a success. We discovered that some flowers don’t travel so well, so we’ve adjusted for that, and we have a long list of flowers to try in 2012. We hope that, with the help of Wellness and their dehydrator, Horticulture can create some beautiful dried arrangements and make the flowers last longer.
Raising broiler chickens was a great success, although this project was met with mixed feelings. Our chickens are kept in a healthy, happy, and safe environment and are raised to a high standard. We’re developing the chicken run next year so that it is even more spacious! The laying chickens began producing a tremendous amount of eggs this year with a simple adjustment to the type and amount of food; 30-40 dozen eggs were going to Fountain House every week during the peak laying times.
It was decided that we should scale back the alpaca herd this year. We sold 13 animals to two buyers we know are providing very caring homes. Fate intervened where the llamas were concerned, and we lost two of our dear llamas to natural death. We were sad and sorry to say goodbye, but we’re grateful they had such a lovely life here at High Point Farm.
Support from Fountain House was overwhelming. The units pulled together to maintain the consistency of the work up here, and we’re very grateful. We saw the formation of the Special Projects group, a group of dedicated members who love the farm and enjoy getting their hands dirty; we look forward to developing this group in 2012.
That’s the year in review. Sincere thanks to Fountain House members and staff for all their hard work. We look forward to a productive year in 2012!