Meet Carey @hawriverhomestead from Burlington, North Carolina, United States “I am passionate about growing food, using plants medicinally, and connecting people to their food source. My husband and I started gardening together 9 years ago in our small front yard in Chicago. From there we moved across country to NC, had two babies, 3 chickens, and 4 acres to grow our homestead.
As a child I always grew up with a garden whether it was my parents or grandparents. But I was really inspired by two things – the book Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver and the documentary Food Inc. I watched and read both of those around the same time, and my perspective of food was forever changed.
Growing our own food brings me a sense of peace and connectivity I cannot find anywhere else. Watching a seed germinate, and grow into a plant that can nourish a family all season is pure magic. It leaves me feeling hopeful.
We have 4 total acres but grow most of our food in eight 4x8 raised beds. I love mushroom compost! It is an amazing simple amendment to our soil. We also have our own compost and add that annually to our beds. I don’t tend to fertilize other than the occasional cow manure or compost. Leaving the roots of high nitrogen plants (peas, cabbage, beans) in place is also a practice that helps the soil.
I wish we had more time to spend in the garden. My husband and I both work full-time, and homesteading/gardening is our passion. It would be amazing to be able to do this and support our family from home.
We love sharing the experience with our children. Being able to show them that it is important to not only take care of our earth, but give back through safe and organic gardening practices is important. We also love the community we have been able to build both online and in our local town.
Keep growing. Gardening is not a perfect science, and that is what is so special about it. Even when it doesn’t work out, try again. And, don’t forget to save your seeds!”