Thorne Family Farms (Malibu)
Thorne Family Farms is as local as it gets - tucked just a block away from popular Zuma Beach in Malibu. Four generations of farmers run in Larry's Family. Larry is best known for his incredible Albion strawberries and dry-farmed tomatoes. His family originally grew all dry-farmed veggies when they first started growing in Culver City and Malibu back in the 20's. Dry farming is properly preparing the soil and only using the irrigation that mother nature provides-no sprinklers! The result is a plant with incredible flavor, since the plant puts its energy into growing quality, not quantity. An average day picking up produce from Larry involves getting out in the fields and helping to pick our own order (sneaking a strawberry or two as we go)! We love it!
ABC Rhubarb Farms (fillmore)
ABC Rhubarb Farms is FarmBox’s go-to supplier for all things herb-aceous! So, “Why the name Rhubarb?” we wondered. In 1985, after thirty years of growing hearty vegetables and rhubarbs in Fillmore, ABC’s then the owner Martin Baltazar decided to shift directions when a prominent chef promised he would find a dedicated following if he grew culinary herbs for restaurants. In business decades later, his daughter, Lily, now runs this family farm and supplies frequenters of Southern California farmers markets with dozens of aromatics. They grow thyme, mint, rosemary, oregano, lemon verbena, and everything in between! Farm Box love herbs for their ability to subtle flavor and transform dishes, enhancing the vibrancy of farmer’s market produce with ease. We hope that you will love cooking with your ABC Rhubarb herbs as much as we do!
Finley Organic Farms (Los Olivos)
Finley Farms Organic is a small family farm located in the Santa Ynez Valley. Farm Box loves their above-the-rest commitment to offering the highest quality certified organic produce to our community. Owners Christopher and Johanna Finley both worked at Farmer's Markets throughout college at UCSB. A couple years after graduating they decided to begin farm of their own. They started with only 1 acre north of Goleta with only hand tools - no tractors! - and after a few years, they were eager to grow. To pursue farming whole-heartedly they moved to a larger farm in Los Olivos. “Farming is a tangible form of art and with every season there is room for improvement," says Johanna of her work on Finley Farms.
Ken's Top Notch Produce (dinuba)
Ken of Ken’s Top Notch produce tells FarmBox LA that if he can’t build or grow it himself, his projects are far less meaningful. Ken started as a chemical engineer, but when his post-grad job options proved bleak, he opted to continue his family’s farming tradition by taking over some land owned by a friend of his. Over more than twenty years, his passion for farming has blossomed, as he provides Californians with over ninety varieties of fruits all year round. Always an experimenter, Ken’s Top Notch has proven to be the perfect on-site laboratory. Try his apriums, mango nectarines and, our personal favorite, emerald plums!
Lily's Eggs (Fillmore)
Ever wonder about the day in the life of a chicken? Lily’s Eggs, a 25-acre farm located in the Los Padres foothills just north of Santa Barbara, will proudly tell you that their hens roam freely on the regular. Owners Diane Tuomey and Robert Troppe boast that what makes eggs from Lily’s exceptional is the quality of life provided to their animals. While many chickens from farms that produce eggs on a commercial level spend lives confined to large, warehouse-like coops without ever stepping outside, Lily’s 150 hens are the sole proprietors of 3 acres of open pasture. What we love about Lily’s Eggs is their dedication to the humane treatment of animals and their fierce commitment to quality production! Their eggs don’t make a bad scramble either!
Maggie's Farm (Agoura)
Maggie’s Farm has been up and running for nearly twenty-five years, sourcing greens from the farm to SoCal farmer’s market goers, salad lovers, and local restaurants ever since! In weekly Farm Boxes, you may find anything from Maggie's microgreens to mustard greens to lettuce to herbs. Owner Nate Peitso learned the business from his parents and now runs the farm, located just north of us in Agora Hills. Maggie’s is dedicated to producing the highest quality organic greens at the market—it’s no surprise to us that much of their farm-fresh lettuce and herbs are purchased by revered Los Angeles restaurants like Bouchon and FIG!
Ojai Friend's Ranches (Ojai)
Ojai Friend's Ranch has been growing citrus in the Ojai Valley for over 100 years! Ojai Friend's Ranch is truly a small family farm, operated by 4 family members and 4 employees, who all take into consideration the the input of their fifth generation of tangerine eaters--little Matthew, Andrew, Marianna, and Oliver! They specialize in tangerines, growing over a dozen varieties that range from the old-fashioned Dancys to new types such as the seedless Shasta Gold. Here at Farm Box LA our favorite citrus variety is the Tahoe. Did you know that Ojai has a very unique microclimate, resulting in suburb flavor development of citrus--tart, sweet, AND juicy? The farm uses organic practices such as the use of biocontrols for insect pests and composts to improve soil tilth and to prepare for next season's growing and harvest.
Powell Farm (Redlands)
Powell Farm is a family owned, 6-acre farm in Redlands, CA. Papa Doug Powell tends mostly to the farming while his kids take the fun task of working the farmers’ markets. Owner Doug Powell is at the farm everyday from sunrise to sunset. Powell Farm is known for their long shelf life produce such as sweet potatoes, onions, winter squash, garlic and shallots. During the summer season they are growing lettuce, different varieties of kale, melons, zucchini, summer squash, Armenian cucumbers and tomatoes; as you can see, Powell Farm is a firm believer in variety!
Tutti Frutti Farms (Lompoc)
Nestled between the picturesque Pacific Ocean and the rolling hills of California wine country, Tutti Fruitti farms in Lompoc is just one of several farm plots of the same adorable name that churn out organic produce year-round. Owner Chris Cadwell is a fifth generation farmer, who decided to ditch his tool belt and leave behind a career in construction to open Tutti Fruitti’s first location in Carpinteria in 1988. From inland in Los Olivos to more coastal lands, Chris is able to grow a wide variety of produce based on the subtle differences in climate and terrain.
When we visited Chris and his farmer’s market manager of 25 years, Barbara, on the farm, not only did we see firsthand the gorgeous squash, beans, and lettuce, but we tasted the reason Tutti Fruitti has been dubbed the king of heirloom tomatoes. A few years ago, Chris was presented with an opportunity to bring his organic heirloom tomatoes to large grocery store chains like Vons and Safeway across the country. He loves being able to cast a wide net in hopes that families across the US will be able to taste the difference in farm-fresh produce and demand more organic fruits and veggies to support local agriculture. We hope FarmBox will help him in this endeavor!
Underwood Family Farms (Moorpark)
For over 40 years, Underwood Family Farms has been supplying Ventura and Los Angeles Counties with the freshest of each season’s fruits and vegetables! The Underwood Family has nearly a century and a half of farming expertise under their belts, so it’s no surprise to us that they know how to grow sustainably year round and seek to share their practices with both consumers and neighbors. In starting UFF, owner Craig Underwood tells Farm Box that he not only aims to supply the area with locally grown, farm-fresh produce but also to connect and bring people back to the farm. The farm offers educational programs for schools, groups, and individual visitors in hopes to teach about sustainable farming practices and the products they grow at Underwood—if you’re in the Moorpark area, be sure to pay them a visit!
Weiser Family Farms (Tehachapi)
Weiser Family Farms began in 1977 when Sidney Weiser, a chemistry teacher and counselor at Garfield High School in East L.A. decided to pack up the family and follow his dream of working off the land. Sid and his wife Raquel laid down roots in Tehachapi, California. Weiser Family Farms joined the farmer’s market community in 1982. Sid’s son, Alex, began to talk to local chefs, customers, and fellow farmers and began to focus on creating a bio-diverse farm dedicated to applying sustainable farming techniques. Farm Box loves WFF for this shared desire and passion in supplying people with unique fruits and vegetables picked at their peak, rather than produce grown for commercial sale. They have incredible varieties of potatoes and supply several of the restaurants in LA. Weiser Family Farms is, and has always been, a family farming entity in the true sense of the word!
Roscoe Zuckerman of Zuckerman’s Farm is a third generation farmer, having learned the practice from his grandfather who began cultivating land in the Delta Region, located at the intersection of the San Joaquin and Sacramento Rivers. Having survived unpredictable flooding in the area, Zuckerman’s Farm now sits on 1,500 acres about 80 miles from San Francisco. FarmBox loves Zuckerman’s asparagus, amazing varieties of potatoes and sweet summer melons.
Honey Pacifica (Long Beach)
Honey Pacifica started in 1978 when Nick and his sons Frank and John got a swarm of bees for a backyard experiment. Since then, they have gained the knowledge of true beekeepers, crafting the highest quality raw honey around. They know the perfect apiaries (aka bee yards) to drive their bees to and will have them flying for miles to find just the right blooms. The flavor of their honey depends on the blooming seasonal nectars. All the work is done by the help of friends and family (and those bees of course), which is why we love supporting this local farm!