Welcome to the Windy Hill Organic Farm web site

Thank you for visiting my web site. Windy Hill Organic Farm is owned by Alyson Chisholm. I produce organic fruits and vegetables and keep a small herd of dairy goats on my 45 acre farm in McKees Mills, New Brunswick. I offer a CSA box program starting in June and sell my certified organic produce seasonally at the Bouctouche Farmers Market on Saturdays and at our seasonal farm stand every day through the season. Though I am the sole owner of this farm I by no means operate on my own. My team of amazing farm workers, as well as volunteers, family, friends, neighbours and other supporters (including CSA members of course!) enable me to run this farm in a sustainable manner and produce vegetables to feed hundreds of families. To my co-producers, I am very grateful and hope we continue doing this for a long time to come!

2023 was a challenging season in many ways starting with a very cold and wet spring. We ended up starting the CSA a week later than usual but were able to make up the time at the end of the season. Fortunately we had a really nice fall with lots of greens in the greenhouse and storage vegetables to share. We had another great garlic year and the tomatoes were amazing. It was not our best potato year, though, as the rainy spring/early summer prevented timely weeding and hilling of the crop. We are also dealing with more new vegetable pests every year and 2023 was no exception. Fortunately I always have something else up my sleeve and this year we will take on the challenges of managing swede midge, leek moth, squash beetle and corn borer (an issue in peppers, believe it or not!) with some new tools.  Yes, we are still dealing with the old pests, too!

I was very privileged to have a great team of workers in 2023, most of whom are coming back this season! This makes all the difference in success and quality of life with a small farm. Having to train new crew every year takes a lot of time and energy and having people arrive at the farm knowing what to do is great! Each of this year’s experienced crew brings their own skills and abilities to the team and between the lot of us, we’ll get the work done. Thanks to last year’s rainy spring we did a lot of clean-up and re-organizing of work and storage spaces on the farm. This paid off throughout the season and will continue to serve us well this season, too. I think it makes everyone’s job more satisfying when they work in an organized and tidy space.

We had our first harvest from our new hay field last year but due to the rainy spring/early summer, the hay was not the best quality. We will manage the field a little differently this year and see what we get. We hardly used our new irrigation well at all, due to all the rain, but it’s still good to know it’s there for when we’ll need it. In 2022 the manure spreader was re-built thanks to the work of a handy local farmer. We used it last year to spread compost instead of the wheelbarrow method, an experiment that was partly successful. Unfortunately, though, our compost provider has sold his business and I doubt we’ll find any product of his quality in the region. Now we have to look at other ways of providing nutrients to the fields.

Plans for 2024 include improving our use of green manures as part of the farm soil fertility program. We are also going to have more manure to spread thanks to our newest farm member, Mini Fée, a lovely Quarter Horse/Appaloosa cross who will provide entertainment as well as manure to the farm. Unfortunately we don’t have the space or facilities to make our own compost but will spread manure, plant a cover crop and then plan to grow vegetables on that space the following year. We’ve used this system for years but due to a limited manure supply, were only able to cover part of the land. With lots of horse and goat manure accumulating through the winter we’ll see what our coverage is like this season!

I love everything about what I do however I also recognize that I’m not getting any younger and will, one day, want to hand this business over to some new farmers. If you are interested in making a living growing organic vegetables, or you know someone who is, please get in touch. The handover process will be multi-year and, though I still have lots of life left in me now, I realize that I need to start the process sooner rather than later!

I’m happy to announce that Marc will join us for his sixth season as will Carla who has been with Windy Hill since 2012! Danielle was a wonderful new addition to the farm in 2022 who came back last year and will be back this year. Max also joins us for his fifth season, full-time this year, which is quite wonderful.

2024 promises many great things and I look forward once again to continue supplying my CSA members with delicious, healthy vegetables.