Do you know the Cunninghams? If you’re lucky, you already do and for good reason! If not, you’re due to pay them a visit. Mike and Judy, a dynamic husband and wife team who, along with their four sons and families, own and operate Country Gardens, an organic farm right here in Coweta County. Together, they supply produce, beef, raw milk, eggs, pork, and honey to locals looking for high quality, healthy products. In addition to selling their wares at the Peachtree Road Farmer’s Market in Buckhead every Saturday, their farm stand is manned on Fridays and Saturdays from 8am to 4:30pm for walk-up sales.
Right now, the fall/winter produce from this 150 acre farm ranges from beans and peas to a plethora of squashes to apples and leafy green vegetables, such as mustard greens, turnip greens, and collards. Interested in a variety of these delicious offerings? One of the best ways to support local farms and farmers is by participating in a CSA, a program that Country Gardens excels in. Short for Community Supported Agriculture, signing up and pre-paying for a CSA program provides you with a box of varied produce for a period of time, usually 8-12 weeks. Once a week, you visit the farm and pick up your surprise box of produce (which will vary based on seasonality and what is growing well). In turn, farmers are guaranteed a livelihood and have a much better idea of how much to grow during a season. If you’re looking for eggs and milk, there’s also a separate 14 week CSA available. In short, everyone wins! The next available veggie CSA program will begin in the spring while the milk and egg CSA will be available during the summer.
For more information on Country Gardens’ CSA program, please visit http://countrygardensfarm.com/csa-farmco-op-2/#general.
If you’re feeling more carnivorous, perhaps you’d be more interested in the grass-fed beef or humanely raised pork that this farm has to offer. You won’t find any hormones or antibiotics or fertilizers in your beef…none of these are used on the farm. Instead, you’ll find the meat has fewer calories, less fat, and higher omega 3 levels than anything you can find at your supermarket. Pigs on this farm are also allowed to forage and root about, as pigs do, without any chemical or grain interference. Pork cuts in the form of chops, butts, sausages, and ribs are available now. Get some while you can! Orders for any of Country Gardens’ available products can be placed online for pick up the next week. In addition, signing up for their weekly newsletter provides a wealth of information about what is available, any pertinent farm news, and even a recipe or two on occasion. When it comes to keeping loyal fans informed, Country Gardens is doing it right!
Perhaps you’re more than just a farm fan. Maybe you want in on this organic food revolution. Country Gardens is happy to help in the form of classes, workshops, soil testing, and consultation services. A list of upcoming classes can be found on their website (and these are often highlighted in the newsletter as well). For the ultimate personal touch, Mike Cunningham is available to visit your home and advise what will grow well for your particular conditions. Now that’s service!
Country Gardens is a family effort and a labor of love that is providing locals with incredible, organic food. In this case, a true farm to table experience is practically in our backyards. Support local and support our farmers!