In my opinion a farm is an agricultural establishment that produces at least 85% of the items it sells: raising chickens for the eggs it sells, having dairy cows for the ice cream it produces, putting in the time and sweat to grow the vegetables and plants it sells. Raising sheep for their wool. Growing trees and trimming the branches for fresh wreaths if that’s your niche.
Orange has plenty of farms.
In 2009 a group of local farmers came together and opened up their farms to the public for Open Farms Day.
The event was well-received and people were able to wander through fields of corn or see how squash, eggplant, pumpkins and other vegetables were grown.
This year there is no Open Farms Day, but, the real farmers are still working the fields and hoping that Mother Nature smiles upon them.
Orange Live is touring the real working farms in Orange to show you what hard work will get you, and bring to light the phrase “No Farms, No Food.”
We’ll start with Grassy Hill Farm, 970 Grassy Hill Road, an unassuming little farm stand with a big sign out front advertising corn.
Once you come down the driveway you will be greeted with a smile by Joe Moncheski’s Family and a bounty of beautiful fresh picked vegetables that were grown right there on Grassy Hill Road or less than 1/2 a mile away on the land that he rents from the town for his corn fields.
The farm has been in Joe’s family for nearly 100 years, and he is passing the passion for farming on to the next generation.
During our visit, 11-year-old Joe jr. gave us a tour of the fields, proudly showing off the various varieties of peppers, squash, tomatoes, and more. He pointed out the lovely licorice smell of the fresh leafy fennel plant and explained the differences between the white, purple, italian and black eggplant. The super fresh corn travels 5 minutes from field to farm stand every day, a few times a day.
It was nice seeing a young man with this much pride in and knowledge of such an important family business.
Stop by Grassy Hill Farm Monday – Friday: 10 am – 7 pm; Saturday & Sunday: 9 am – 7 pm
Support your local farms.