Just north of Houston in a suburb called, Spring Texas, there is a family owned farm where you can go and buy home-grown fresh produce. This is Atkinson Farms.
We found out about this farm at one of the local farmer’s markets in Houston. They have some of the best tomatoes you could ever want to eat. During the spring, the farm has a huge Strawberry Patch. It’s usually filled with kids picking their own strawberries.
Late June, early July (This weekend) the side field was filled with large stalks of corn. Behind the corn was cherry tomato plants. This farm recycles the land and grows different things in these areas at different times. Last year, this side field was full of heirloom tomatoes.
This is only a section of the 100 acres of gardens that the farm has. In the 50’s, the field was started 4 generations back. During the 50s, 60s, and 70’s, the farm mostly grew tomatoes, bell peppers and eggplant. In the fall and winters, they changed the vegetables to grow green onions and radishes.
In the 70’s, the began to grow more leafy greens such as mustard, collard, and turnips. When their main buyer closed down, the farm began selling direct to the Harris County Farmer Market and to local grocery stores. In the 90’s, things were tough for the farm because of the NAFTA bill that allowed Mexico to import lesser quality produce to come into the country. There were no regulations on what kind of chemicals they could use.
Things are very different now. With the resurgence of buying local, eating local, and everyone being so afraid of “chemicals” it has allowed Atkinson Farms to flourish. They attend all the farmer’s markets in the city and surrounding areas and their fields are packed with fresh veggies that are free from pesticides and chemicals.
People come from miles away just to hand pick their fruit and veggies with what is in season. If it isn’t in season, it isn’t available. There are no greenhouses to mass produce items that should not be around.