Farm Like It’s 1985

MedfordLeas

You may think farming today is a lot different than it was more than 100 years ago, but Kim Batten, owner of the 1895 Organic Farm in Lumberton, is here to tell you that’s not true.

Batten will be speaking on the farming techniques used at her farm, which she has operated with her husband since 2000, and how they manage to keep it organic without any prior agriculture background, in a special lecture titled, “The Story of the 1895 Organic Farm.”

From 10 a.m. until 11 a.m. on Tuesday, March 29, Batten will explain how her family went from intending only to have small family gardens to owning and running a certified organic farm. Those who wish to attend must register by March 18. There is no cost to attendees.

“Farming is hard work, from daybreak until it’s dark, but when I go out, I enjoy what I’m doing,” said Batten. “Whether I am putting a seed in and watching it grow, harvesting vegetables, or selling and tasting the produce, it’s all rewarding.”

After just three years as owners of the 1895 Organic Farm, which Batten named as such when she was inspired by the era before farmers used chemicals or pesticides, 9.5 of the 14 acres were certified organic.

Batten sold her first organic tomato from a picnic table roadside stand on her property, and since then, she hasn’t looked back. She’s part of the most rapidly growing segment of the nation’s changing agricultural landscape — women. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the number of woman-operated farms more than doubled between 1982 and 2007.

“Women today are farming from a sense of passion and mission. Some want to provide healthy food for the nation, while others are looking to build their community or live a life of deeper meaning,” said Jane Weston, Medford Leas Director of Development & Community Relations. “Medford Leas is honored to have one of South Jersey’s own — Kim Batten — speak to the community about how she manages her farm throughout the year and how she meets the stringent requirements to become certified organic in this special lecture.”

“The Story of the 1895 Organic Farm” is part of a series of programs being offered by Medford Leas this spring. For a full listing of Pathways to Learning programs, or to register for a program, visit www.medfordleas.org or call (609) 654–3588.

Medford Leas is a nationally accredited not-for-profit community, guided by Quaker principles, for those who are 55 and older, with two campuses. The Medford Campus is located at 1 Medford Leas Way, Medford.