We Are Proud of How We Grow
What does Sustainable Mean?
We are using farming practices that will increase and strengthen soil health and tilth instead of depleting it. This results in more nutritious crops today and a promise of healthy crops for the years to come.
Here are some of the growing practices we're talking about:
- Crop rotation, cover crops and soil care
- Traditional weed control
- Earth-friendly fungicide
- Natural insect control
- Responsible crop treatment
Crop Rotation, Cover Crops, and Soil Care
Instead of conveniently planting the same produce in each section of our farm from year to year, we rotate our crops. We do this because we are investing in the future of our soil. Each product depletes certain nutrients in the soil, and if that product were to be planted over and over in the same area, the soil may become leeched of its nutrients.
We also plant cover crops, high-nutrient crops that will not be harvested but instead left in the soil to prevent erosion, encourage natural pollination, and to increase healthy organic matter in the soil. Each year, 25% of our farm is planted with cover crops.
We also practice minimal tillage where possible, keeping the soil life happy and undisturbed. We often will plow in the fall when the earthworms and other soil life have dug deeper into the soil because of the cold weather. This way we can disturb these soil-promoting creatures as little as possible.
We invest over $12,000 per year in our soil, adding organic amendments to increase its health and to keep it nutrient-rich. We test our soil regularly for ideal nutrient levels so that we can provide you with the beautiful, healthy produce that Sunscape Farms is known for.
Traditional Weed Control
When it comes to fighting New York's vicious weeds, we don't use extensive commercial herbicides. Our primary weapons are cover crops, tilling, discing, hoeing, and, of course, hand-pulling! :)
Our primary fungicide for fresh vegetables is rated for certified organic growing and produced by BioSafe Systems, a company dedicated to alternative methods to disease control that leave no toxic residue. This organic, food-grade fungicide breaks down naturally into common plant nutrients which decompose shortly after use.
In the few cases where we are forced to use a non-Organic material to save our crop from a disease or fungus, it is one that also breaks down rapidly. We only apply it in the foliar stages of the plant's growth (when there is no fruit or vegetable on the plant yet) to ensure no residue on the product you buy.
Natural Insect Control
To avoid any dangerous chemical residue, we use little, if any, pesticides to fight New York's insects. We typically use organic biological insect controls instead of relying on commercial chemicals. Biological insect controls are harmless insects that feed on harmful insects.
Responsible Crop Treatment
In addition to all the practices described above, where applicable we use organic fish and seaweed fertilizers so that we can provide you with better quality nutritious produce.
Because we have worked so hard to give you a product that is truly beautiful and nutritious, we refuse to contaminate our produce with chemicals. Our promise to you: We will not use post-harvest synthetic chemical treatments on any of our produce.