By Vera Moroney
A visit to Stony Loam Farm on a cold dark evening confirms this
In season, Stony Loam Farm offers a bountiful community supported agriculture (CSA) of fresh veggies and flowers. The name of the farm comes from the agricultural designation for the type of soil on the farm. A bit complicated, but it is a mixture of clay, sand and shells.
Dave Quickel, the owner, is firm in his belief that folks should come to the farm to see and feel where the food comes from, so you need to pick up your CSA at the farm.
That said, Stony Loam is a fixture at the Shelburne Saturday Farmers Market. Dave offers not only the finest veggies and flowers but an outrageously delicious and popular egg sandwich, the Sammy (named in honor of a dog, Sam, he used to have), made of a grilled tortilla, scrambled eggs and cheddar. A happy thought as we are almost at winter solstice.
What is most interesting is how Dave came to do this. Originally from Pennsylvania, he attended UVM and was in the process of applying to law school when he had a summer job at Bingham Brook Farm. He felt a bond with the land and the work and decided to nix the family expectations and focus on the environment.
What he did next was what all young folks should do, become a ski bum in the West in Montana and other parts unknown during the winter and work the land in Vermont in the summer. He eventually became the production manager for Bingham Brook Farm. As that farm backed out of farming, he saw a need to create a CSA here. Land, a place to live and CSA subscribers were needed to do this. In stepped a number of like-minded Charlotters who had been CSA members and wanted to support the new endeavor. Energized by this support Dave set out to make it happen.
When asked the best and worst surprises on the farm, he said, “Clay makes for bad mud.” Oh, here in Charlotte we all share that thought.
That brings us to the future. Dave wants to grow (excuse the pun) the farm and make it available to more folks. He is very happy to be in Charlotte and for the high retention rate of the CSA and the folks who find him at the farmers market.
In season you can find his produce at the Shelburne Market, City Market, Archies and the Single Pebble. The best way, though, is to sign up for the CSA and pick up fresh veggies right at the farm. A very happy thought.