Ep 109. Howard Prussack on Four Decades of Profitable Farming
What’s the oldest thriving organic farm in Vermont and how have they grown throughout the years?
Find out today from Howard Prussack of High Meadows Farm, located just a short drive from the center of Putney, Vermont. High Meadows Farm is a 65 Acre farm of rolling hills and fertile soils, surrounded by oak and maple woodlands. As Vermont’s oldest certified organic farm, High Meadows has been providing the community and greater New England with premium organic vegetables and potted plants since 1979. The land has been used for farming as far back as the 1700s when it was once part of the historic Ranney family farm, the first settlers in town. A farm (and a farmer!) with so much history must be rich in knowledge, so be sure to check this one out!
In This Episode:
How Howard began his farming journey and what’s happened since 0:45
What kind of tunnels Howard uses on the farm 20:54
How the growing season progresses on High Meadows Farm 23:56
Whether Howard prefers larger or smaller greenhouses 25:25
What kinds of field crops High Meadows Farm grows 37:02
How Howard’s team is assembled 44:12
The story behind their farmer’s market 54:38
When, Howard believes, is the best time to start a farm 1.01:34
The biggest mistake Howard sees newer farmers making 1.02:11
Where you can find out more about Howard and High Meadows Farm 1.10:10
About the Guest
High Meadows Farm is a 65 Acre farm of rolling hills and fertile soils, surrounded by oak and maple woodlands. Situated just a short drive from the center of Putney, VT, Vermont’s oldest certified organic Farm. High Meadows has been providing the community and greater New England with premium organic vegetables and potted plant plants since 1979.
High altitude, cool evenings, and mineral rich soils are key to High Meadows’ sweet nutrient rich vegetables. This land has been used for farming as far back as the 1700s when it was once part of the historic Ranney family farm, the first settlers in this town. Prior to its purchase in 1979, the farm was primarily run as a dairy farm.
Four and a half miles from the center of Putney, VT, High Meadows farm is located just adjacent to the site where NOFA VT was founded. NOFA’s 40th year celebration was held in the High Meadows Farm barn!
Howard is responsible for the sales end of the business, including sourcing new accounts, arranging promotions, and selling in new items. He does all of the seeding, manages the facility, including greenhouse and field production, fertilizing, pest control, repairs and maintenance, greenhouse construction, and trucks. Howard runs the retail business at the farmer’s market as well.
Lisa manages the plant inventories, plans the production schedule, is in charge of rooted cuttings and plant material purchases, and instituted lot control. Lisa keeps the business financial records, forecasts, sales, and expenses, and works on strategy with Howard. In addition, Lisa readies plant pots for sale and fills orders and loads trucks.
Resources and mentions
And if you want to keep the conversation going, join us in our Facebook Group to connect with us and other farmers looking to grow their business!
We also have six free eguides to help you be more effective on your farm (Winter Growing, Pastured Poultry, Washing Shed Efficiency, Profitable Farmers Toolkit, what to look for in a farm property, etc), which you can download here.