CSA is win–win for farmer, consumer

JOINING a CSA is good for your community, the farmer and yourself. It is good for you because you save money by receiving an unbeatable value. A CSA forces you to cook at home. Food cooked at home has no preservatives, is low in sodium, is healthier and tastes better. It’s good for the community […]


Life on farm part of my past, present and future

EMMALYN SNEAD FOR THE FREE LANCE-STAR Emmalyn (left) and Savannah Snead FILE/SUZANNE CARR-ROSSI/THE FREE LANCE-STAR Growing up on farm a big part of who she is. The Snead sisters sell their fresh brown eggs to customers throughout the area   GROWING UP on a farm has had the greatest impact on my life. It has […]


‘Apple Man’ let new guy feel welcome at market

I FIRST GOT to know the “Apple Man”—Lester W. Deal—during the early 1980s on my first day as a seller at the Fredericksburg Farmers Market. I had sold produce and eggs door-to-door since 1961 and also at four other locations around Fredericksburg so I already had a customer base. The evening before, I had picked […]

Apples

Melons

Good melons require time and special attention

I DID NOT grow melons on my farm in 2012. It was the first year I hadn’t grown melons since 1980, the year I bought my farm. My CSA (community supported agriculture) membership had increased in such a way that I did not have enough labor to pick all the expanded crops in a timely […]


Disappearance of wild blackberries relates to farming issues

Nowadays people ask, “What happened to all the wild blackberries?” Years ago people would pick wild blackberries, wild asparagus and wild strawberries off of the edge of highway and railroad right-of-ways. With these right-of-way edges now sprayed regularly to kill noxious weeds, the desirable plants die off as well. What’s more, 99 percent of all […]

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Asparagus

Asparagus: A wonderful time of year

EMMETT SNEAD / THE FREE LANCE-STAR HERE ARE some of the questions I’m commonly asked by asparagus buyers: How do I store asparagus in the refrigerator? Why do you leave the bottoms on your asparagus? How do you freeze asparagus? When does asparagus season end? Why is some asparagus so tough? The only tough part […]


Thanks for the memories, blackberries

  I WAS inspired by my mother to plant cultivated blackberries. They may be her favorite food. For sure they are her favorite fruit.   In 1964, I won first place in a 4–H milk-cow-judging contest. I competed against 180-some 4–Hers, 13 to 18 years old, from all over the state of Virginia. The first […]

Blackberries

Snead Sisters

Farming is family affair for Sneads

  Growing up on my dad’s farm was very special for me—especially because of the experiences I shared with my twin sister. Partners in crime since the day we were born, Emmie and I did everything from raising 4–H calves to running a business. Everything we were able to do was p only because of the […]


Area cultivating community supported agriculture

This month’s column contiues a discussion of how community supported agriculture developed in the Fredericksburg area. DOING A community supported agriculture effort has dovetailed into my farming operation better than any single marketing tool I have ever known in my 51 years of retail farming. There has never been a problem selling all the produce […]

Emmett Snead

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Customizing your garden commitment

BY EMMETT SNEAD FOR THE FREE LANCE-STAR I GET a lot of questions about when and how to plant a garden. I do not know all the answers to all the questions. However, I can make up good answers in the form of glittering generalities to any questions I do not know the answers to. […]