Eco Farm
Cindy Econopouly and John Dennis Soehner
2501 Butler Road
Chapel Hill, NC 27516

Food for Living
Food for Thought


Eco Farm Photos 2014
(Check out our photos on Eco Farm's facebook page as well. Look for "Eco Farm NC, Farming, Agriculture".)

Please scroll down to see images of who we are and what we do on Eco Farm, and check back weekly as we add more photos.
Our family farm workers are Shane, Nichole, Willie, Riva, Cindy, and John. This composite photo shows who we all are, although we don't all work at one market at once.
Saturday, April 26th was the first day of the Piedmont Farm Tour, when we had over a hundred visitors. John took visitors on tours of the farm, showing them what and where we grow, and telling them how we grow it. (4/26/14) John steps into his shed to explain how we inoculate logs with shiitake mushroom spores. (4/26/14) Nichole shares her enthusiasm with two favorite customers from one of the four farmers' markets where Nichole works our stand. (4/26/14) John and Cindy left on the second day of the Farm Tour to attend a memorial service for their long-time friend, the late Joseph Vincent Pedagno. Lunch was on the porch that Joseph designed and built during his years as an accomplished carpenter; displayed is the stained glass work he created during his illness. We will always be grateful to Joseph for redesigning and building our solar greenhouse, and for his friendship and his earthy New York humor. (4/27/14)
On April 20th, Eco Farm had a Greek Easter potluck at Granny's house with all family members present. Shane began roasting the lamb in early morning hours so that everyone could enjoy themselves in late afternoon. (4/20/14) Shane sliced up the meat and brought it to the table. (4/20/14) We pulled all the kitchen chairs out to the back yard to enjoy the warm sunny weather. (4/20/14) We all enjoyed the food and drink. (4/20/14)
Then it was time for "tsougrisma" involving the whole family, where each player holds his or her red egg, and lightly taps the end of it against another player's egg. The player who successfully cracks the eggs of all other players will have good luck during the year. Tsougrisma means "clinking together" or "clashing." (4/20/14) Cameron was thrilled to be declared the winner. (4/20/14) Holidays mean relaxing with family and friends. (4/20/14) A good time was had by all. (4/20/14)
Cole, Bobby, and John pack collard greens into bags on Friday to sell at market on Saturday. (4/11/14) John and Cole load firewood into the pickup truck for another delivery. (4/9/14) Cole harvests and rubber bands dinosaur kale. Nichole will be selling it at the Wednesday Carrboro Farmers' Market, which starts today for the season. (4/9/14) After harvesting bok choy, kale, and lettuce, Bobby and John are weighing and bagging produce. Bobby is our Long Island fisherman friend that visits annually; he and John will bring these greens and our deliciously-sweet baby sweet potatoes to the Fearington Farmers' Market (open 4 to 6 Tuesday afternoons). (4/8/14)
On Monday morning Cindy and Riva visited their friends Joseph and Teresa, who's honeybees then began swarming. Swarming is the formation of a new colony when the queen bee leaves with about sixty percent of the worker bees (from thousands to tens of thousands of bees). A swarm may frighten people, but the usually-unaggressive bees merely seek a new nesting spot for their queen. (3/31/14) WIKIPEDIA explains what Cindy and Riva saw today: "The swarm emerges from the hive and gathers nearby, clustered about the queen. Meanwhile, twenty to fifty scout bees search for a suitable new nest location. Each scout returns and uses a 'waggle dance' to describe the location and suitability of the spot she's found. The new hive locates in the most appropriate spot, a conclusion arrived upon by a collective decision making process." (3/31/14) Nichole plants beet seedlings barefoot on a beautiful Monday afternoon. (3/31/14) John and Cole harvested some of our kale and collard tops. We'll be bringing these and a few other greens (including lettuce!) to the Carrboro Farmers' Market on Saturday morning. The Market's Saturday hours have now returned to 7AM to 12 noon, so wake up early if you'd like to buy these first early greens! (4/4/14)
With icy weather outside, Nichole and John inoculate shiitake mushroom logs inside the work shed. (3/18/14) As they finish inoculating each log, they carry it outside to stack in a pile. (3/18/14) John spring-cleans the farm by burning up old logs and debris in a bonfire. (3/27/14) By late Thursday afternoon, Cindy had mostly finished weeding three LONG rows of garlic. Her aching knuckles tells her that Friday is a day off from weeding. (3/27/14)
On Wednesday, the sun set over our home and the rain-soaked remay-covered crops in the back field. (3/12/14) On Saturday afternoon, John forms beds and covers them with composting plastic. (3/15/14 While John lays plastic, Cindy works a few beds over, weeding flower seedlings. The background seedlings have been weeded in the bed on the right, while those in the foreground have yet to be. (3/15/14) We've got stacks of firewood under cover and ready for sale. (3/15/14)
Cindy waters the trays after filling them with potting soil. The seeds she'll be planting are small and need sunlight to germinate so they must be bottom-watered to keep them from being washed out of the tray. (3/12/14) These seeds will stay inside the house until they germinate and become large enough to tolerate a watering can. (3/12/14) Nichole and John load the pickup for another delivery. (If you'd like a load of our firewood, leave a message for John at 919/933-4663.) (3/12/14) Nichole mixes up a new batch of potting soil in preparation for planting seeds on Wednesday. (3/16/14)
John formed new beds on Saturday before Sunday's coming rain.(3/22/14) On Sunday our friend Miles came over with some logs he'd cut, inoculated them with spores, and went home with a load of shiitake logs to stack in his woods. (3/10/14) When our friends Caili and Nick came to visit us on Wednesday evening with their newborn baby Brighton, John carried out one his favorite tasks: He tended to the baby. (3/7/14) Friday afternoon Nichole and John each worked on oppposite sides to remove honeysuckle, poison ivy, young saplings, and other weeds from the fence line. (2/21/14)
Nichole is harvesting lettuce mix for John and Cindy to bring to the Saturday farmers' market in Carrboro. (2/21/14) John has an afternoon "meeting" with Nichole and Cole on the farm. (2/21/14) John knocked the snow off the cold frame to keep the building from collapsing, and several hours later it was loaded with snow again. (2/13/14) Cindy clears slabs of snow off the chicken coop. (Nichole photographs with the camera inside a plastic bag.) (2/13/14)
With the temperature in the twenties, John and Nichole inoculate shiitake mushroom logs. Behind them is the fire that warms them less than it smokes them out. (1/28/14) On Monday morning before the expected rainfall, John lays black plastic on our upper field. (1/28/14) On Friday afternoon John, Nichole, Willie, and Cindy were busy cleaning Brussels sprouts for the farmers' market on Saturday. (1/9/14) Nichole is loading the second pickup truck with firewood for the deliveries we'll do. (1/6/14)