News and blog

Welcome to the blog.
Posted 7/21/2014 1:03pm by Don Schooner or Becky White - Schooner.
August 16th, 2014 9:00am - 1:00pm

Like honey? We do too! Come be part of the Honey Harvest! Mike will walk you through the extraction process and you will get some hands on experience! There is nothing quite like honey fresh out of the hive!!

RSVP IS REQUIRED! Please call Mike at 419-494-2226

 

 

Posted 7/2/2014 4:17pm by Don Schooner or Becky White - Schooner.

 

Hello CSA Members!
 
I hope all is swell in your neck of the woods! I am so excited that the CSA season is almost here!
 
Just a quick note to let you know the CSA will start soon. Our first pick up for TUESDAY Members will be Tuesday, July 8th from 3-6 and for our SATURDAY Members, Saturday, July 12th 9am till noon. It was fantastic to see so many of you out to pick berries. Our first wave of strawberries are just about done but our second wave will start around late July. The gardens are looking wonderful, the crew has been hard at work getting the gardens prepped for all the fall plants to go in. This week we will be getting some much needed rain. The huglekultur beds are proving to be amazing! Schooner is hoping to get the Serpent Mound garden started soon. We harvested our first lavender of the season and will be distilling lavender essential oil soon along with lavender hydrosol - which I know many of you LOVE! As always, we are researching, discovering, sharing and loving life - so glad you are part of the experience! 
 
Eggs will be available for sale at pick up - $4.50 for members. We have baby turkeys and a bunch of new laying hens to visit when you come. No, I have NOT gotten over my chicken phobia but I still enjoy admiring them from afar and I am forever grateful for their delicious eggs! 
 
CSA 2014 Handbook is under the CSA tab.
 
If you have any questions give me a ring - 419-261-0908 and you are always welcome to pop in at the farm! Look for our first weekly newsletter of the season in your inbox Monday, July 7th. If you forgot which pick up day you signed up for just email me and I will let you know. 
 
 
Thanks and we will see you soon! Can't wait to see you! 
 
Namaste,
Becky
Posted 6/18/2014 1:54pm by Don Schooner or Becky White - Schooner.

Our first flush of berries has just about some to an end. However, we will have more in late July or early August. Blackberries too a hit this past winter but we hope to have some. Check back in July for a berry update!

 

Posted 6/2/2014 2:13pm by Don Schooner or Becky White - Schooner.

 

We do not use any synthetic sprays on our fields. Only sunshine and mother nature! 

Little red gems of summer sunshine are ripening as we speak. Due to the harsh winter we lost a portion of our field but still have a nice amount for u-pick. This spring we added 2000 more plants to our berry field. Please call us to determine if the field is picked out or if we have any berries available that day. Hours vary depending on availability. General Farm Hours - Mon-Fri 9-3, Sat. 9-12 Closed on Sunday

419-261-0908

Posted 5/13/2014 12:46pm by Don Schooner or Becky White - Schooner.
 

Happy Spring!

Hope this little note finds you all well. I have to be honest, this winter, like many folks, we were basically snowbound more often than not and jeez, I think I know what Jack Nicholson felt like in "The Shining".  I scared Schooner a few times by putting on a crazed face and saying, "Heeeeeeere's Becky!" He does not appreciate my brand of humor, little does he know I may not have been joking. 

What's happening at the farm? Better question is - what is not happening? Happy, crazy, busy people are we, so grateful for the sunshine and being able to get our hands dirty again. The Garden Staff has been cleaning the farm of blown in trash, prepping the fields, building more hugelkultur, accessing plant damage and planting away. We have a several new volunteers that are just awesome. The WSOS program will be sending us some new garden volunteers too. 

Our spring has been on the cool side, so we aren't too anxious to get a ton of plants in the ground till Mother Nature says she is ready. On a very sad note - we have lost all but one bee hive. This winter our region has seen the loss of over 85% of honeybees due to the extreme cold and the collapse issues we are seeing in honeybees. I think in our next newsletter I will share with you how we care for our bees and the issues we are seeing. It is a labor of love - we need bees for our food system and their numbers are dwindling rapidly. New bees were ordered last fall but with the polar vortex winter we had bees are in very short supply. We may have to shrink the apiary from 2o hives down to 10 this season. Mike, our beekeeper has been out cleaning the hives and getting them ready for new occupants. 
 
 

Our blackberries didn't fair well this winter. There is new growth but we don't think we will have the abundance we had last year. Strawberries have some damage but have been perking right back along. We will be adding 2000 more strawberry plants to the patch. Raspberries are being fickle. Not sure yet what to expect from them but we will be grateful for whatever we may have. 

Several of the perennial herbs were lost to the severe cold BUT believe it or not - 23 of our 100 five year old rosemary plants made it. Now, rosemary is a tender perennial and we never expect it to make it year to year but 23 strappy little shrubs soldiered on! The lavender labyrinth is doing pretty well  - we will need to replace about 1/3 of the plants but are thrilled we didn't lose more. The perennial herbs that have survived are strong and healthy and we look forward to enjoying their benefits later in the season. 



Mike working on lavender labyrinth 

Enough about the polar vortex and dead plants - here is some new fun news! Schooner has gone stark raving mad with making more hugelkultur mounds. The mounds were incredibly successful last fall and they have been a blessing this spring when the ground has been too wet to till - we could still plant on the mounds. Check out our Facebook page to follow along on the hugelkultur adventure. Schooner is very geeked up about this so he posts lots of photos. I marvel at how stinkin' smart he is. I told him he was a keeper

Several BGSU Students Helping with Hugelkultur

We are moving more and more into permaculture and biodynamics. Here is a link to a wonderful and very insightful video that describes exactly what a large part of the farm will become. I encourage you to take a few minutes to watch it, it really is fantastic! 

CSA member and good friend, Mary Dennis and I have been planning a Dye Garden. Mary is a spinner and all around talented lady so this is an honor to work with her. We are working on an example garden to share what plants make dyes and then we will do a lot of wildcrafting.  The dye garden will be a work in process. I am dreaming of having a Woad Workshop next summer - blue sheets flowing in the wind - happy faces flush with creative inspiration. This summer Mary and I will experiment and develop some workshops for next season. 



Speaking of classes - yes, we will have some. This brings me to my next piece of news-i-ness, we are in the stages of getting financing for a new building that will have classrooms, a commercial kitchen, a cooking classroom and sundry. That said, it will be next spring that we can have classes in the new building (hopefully) but I will still have some fun classes/workshops out of our house and at the farm this year. Bread making, cheese making, soap making and fermented food are all on tap. I have been all over the area giving presentations on medicinal herbs, history, cooking and more the past several weeks. I am a little "classed" out - but never fear, I will post the 2014 class schedule soon - so check out the website or wait for newsletters to arrive in your inbox. In addition to having classes at the farm, Becky is out and about doing workshops & presentations for a variety of organizations and private groups.
 

Becky giving a presentation on "The History of Aprons"at First Step in Fostoria. We are honored to be part of the Women's Enrichment Series.


Here are a few of the specifics on upcoming events at other places,most require reservations and there is a charge for most of the programs - 
 

Strawberry Summer Picnic 
June 19th at 7pm  
Spend the evening sampling some wonderful dishes made with STRAWBERRIES. 
The Summer Kitchen - Helena, Ohio
Call the ladies over at The Summer Kitchen to reserve your spot.
419-638-4205

Berry Jam Making Demo
 June 30th at 6 pm 
Learn the basics on making jam from our fresh berries. Take home a jar of fresh jam and recipes! This is my third class in the Women's Enrichment program. What a delight & what a wonderful cause to support. 
First Step - Fostoria, Ohio 
Call First Step at 419-435-7300 for reservations


 Civil War Battlefield Medicinal Herbs 
July 10th at 7pm 
Learn how everyday "weeds" helped save the lives of many on the battlefield and on the home front. This is one of my newest presentations and I LOVE IT! 
The Summer Kitchen - Helena, Ohio 
Call 419-638-4205 for reservations

  

Canning Demo 
 August 4th at 2pm
Way Public Library in Perrysburg, Ohio
Learn the basics on canning.
Call Way Library for reservation  419-874-3135

 

 

Jammin' with The Girls 
August 14th at 7pm
Fun filled jam packed demo with the Karla and Kari. It will be a blast! We will be using honey and a low sugar pectin to create jars of fresh berry love. Schooner Farms Jams will be for sale.
The Summer Kitchen - Helena, Ohio call 419-638-4205 to reserve your spot.

 

Cooking with Herbs
September 8th at 6pm
Wonder what to do with those green things? We can help! Learn how to incorporate herbs into your everyday cooking. 

First Step - Fostoria, Ohio 
Call First Step at 419-435-7300 for reservations



We plan to have some Teas with members and guests. I love teas and I love my friends enjoying an afternoon of fussy goodies and a neat presentation. I have had several requests to do my Apron Program so I think we will tackle that along with a Jane Austen Tea. Who doesn't love Jane? We had a small tea last year and the ladies loved it - so let me iron a few ruffles out and I will set some dates. 

 

 

As of this writing, our new strawberry plants arrived via UPS and we have a crew planting away. There are oodles of flowers on last year's crop - so let's keep our fingers crossed for lots of juicy berries! Berries won't be ready till mid to late June. The be on our "Berry Availability" list - go here 


Namaste,

Becky and the crew at Schooner Farms
Posted 5/2/2014 3:14pm by Don Schooner or Becky White - Schooner.

The weather is still up and down - hey, we are in Ohio right? Lawns are greening up, flowers are popping their heads up out of the dirt daily and big fluffy clouds with blue skies are upon us. We won't talk about the cool, gloomy drizzle - we need a little of that to make the gorgeous stuff come along! 

It has been a busy spring at the farm. Mike, our head gardener, has been prepping the garden beds, lugging logs, compost, top soil and mulch to create new hugel kulture beds. (More on those later) The soil is still too cold for many of the seeds to go in. We thank our lucky stars we chose to start in July again this year. Spring is so up and down that it just does not serve us to have a June start day. We get cranky and frustrated. So later season it is! Not that we aren't doing anything - mind you! 

Hugel kulture garden -first step is logs. We have had a ton of people stop in and ask, "What are you DOING?" - we just chuckle.

The garden beds are coming along, we just got some HOPS - yes, you read that correctly - HOPS. I will be adding them in for our herbals and dyes. So we will have non GMO all natural hops available this summer for you beer makers. 

Don and I have been at many venues doing workshops, presentations and volunteering. I just finished my year long herbal apprenticeship and had a wonderful presentation for DAR on Medicinal Herbs on the Civil War Battlefront - fascinating stuff! Thusly, I have been plotting out our medicine wheel garden - which may not be finished till next season.

This summer I am doing a series of enrichment classes with First Step in Fostoria. On May 5th I am doing a favorite program of mine on the history of aprons. Here is more info from First Step - there is a $10 charge.

 

 

APRONS PROGRAM - MAY 5TH - FIRST STEP IN FOSTORIA

First Step as part of its Women's Enrichment Series is proud to present the program Every Apron Has a Story. A perfect way for mother’s daughters, and grandmothers to learn the history of this humble piece of fabric, stitching together the significance of this time honored garment. While enjoying tea, cranberry scones, tea sandwiches and blueberry bread.

This program will be presented by Becky White-Schooner of Schooner Farms and Inspired by Nature from Weston Ohio. Becky is a gypsy of sorts. She loves art, organic farming, cooking, history, reading and her community. With degrees in Art and History and a practical sense of how that can give our lives context. Becky is the perfect candidate for this presentation. 

“This class will take you on a nostalgic journey that portrays a time period and lifestyle where the apron was an absolute necessity and the matriarch of the house wouldn't be clothed without one to the present. Someone once said, “Our most treasured family heirlooms are our sweet family memories.” The apron memory is one of those heirlooms.” Terri Mercer, First Step executive director, said. Call First Step at 419-435-7300 to make reservations.

We are in the final stages of finishing our business plan and are just about ready to present our dream of a new facility for classes and workshops with a commercial kitchen. Keep your fingers crossed! 

Our CSA is sold out for the season - there are several wonderful farms that have CSA programs as well - check out localharvest.org for a listing and contact info. 

 

 

Posted 2/5/2014 12:57pm by Don Schooner or Becky White - Schooner.

 

 

I love snow, I truly do. Wintertime at the farm is a quest for quiet time to reflect on last season, prepare for the next and savor the moment. This winter I find myself restless and snowbound. So, to offset the winter woes I have been busy experimenting, plotting and planning classes/workshops for the 2014 season. We are most definitely doing a sourdough bread baking class. Schooner gifted me a lovely new NutriMill and a better dehydrator to make fresh sprouted flours. I really wanted this so I could sprout grains then mill them and teach you how to do it too. Who doesn't like bread? There are so many options and also ways for our gluten intolerant friends to enjoy breads again. I have been making bread, lots of it.

 

 

Doesn't a fresh loaf with some Schooner Farms Raw Honey or berry jam sound delightful? It does and this season we will be making some fresh baked goodness! 

 

 

Posted 12/30/2013 2:05pm by Don Schooner or Becky White - Schooner.

Our winter session of Beekeeping class is about to begin! Jan. 11 is our Beginners Class. 

 
Learn about the basic equipment, tools, costs, legal issues, what to expect when harvesting your honey, resources and references.This class is the basis for our series. To become a beekeeper you need to know what you are getting into, while beekeeping is enjoyable it is also very complex and many folks jump in without regard to some of the realities involved. This class is a MUST for people considering beekeeping. Students receive a beekeeping book along with handouts. Jan. 11 at 10am. Schooner Farms, Weston. Participants must register at 419-261-0908

Posted 10/14/2013 12:03pm by Don Schooner or Becky White - Schooner.

This time of year is bittersweet for us here on the farm. We are always grateful for a bountiful season and the opportunity to connect with amazing people. Now, as we wind down and get ready for winter we are sad we won't be seeing our CSA members every week, we will miss the interactions with new customers and sharing the farm with them. 

People often tell us they marvel at the things we do and how we go about doing them. For us, this is our passion and we are grateful to be able to do what we love and love what we do. 

Posted 9/23/2013 2:14pm by Don Schooner or Becky White - Schooner.

Overwhelmed, shocked, amazed and delighted are just a few words I can think of to descibe the amount of people interested in our CSA program. Our current members have first dibs then if we have openings we will offer them to our waiting list. Please be patient with us and thank your interest! Just sign up on our mailing list and "2014 CSA " is an option listed. Just sign up and we will be in touch with availability. 

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