The following is from the USDA, and was written by Tivoli Gough, USDA, and Sam Skemp, NRCS. The Mirror is highlighting women farmers as part of National Women’s Month.
This Friday meet Tiffany Cade of Deep Rooted Organics, a certified organic farm in Westby, Wisconsin. Organics are at the heart of Tiffany’s passion for providing her community with produce that has fresh, local flavor. Operating alongside her partner, Jimmy Fackert, she grows a wide variety of vegetables and herb seedlings, along with a selection of annuals, perennials, and native plants.
The farm has an annual production of over 35,000 pounds of tomatoes, all sold within 60 miles of the farm. Produce is delivered twice weekly to ensure freshness and quality to local restaurants, grocery stores, and co-ops. Their produce is also sold directly from their farm and at farmers markets. From spring to late fall, they offer cut flowers and a wide variety of tomatoes, peppers, and specialty produce.
Passion for Organics
The unfortunate loss of Tiffany’s stepfather, Brian, in 2012 left Ski Hill Greenhouses without management. With her passion for organic farming, Tiffany knew she wanted to take over the greenhouses as a tribute to him. Tiffany and Jimmy began planning their move and preparing for the next growing season. At the time, Tiffany was working for an organic vegetable farm in Chicago and completing various community farming projects. Having both grown up with country roots, the couple was ready to move back to rural life.
Tiffany and Jimmy have managed the farm producitvely and made many changes and updates throughout the growing season. Valuing organic methods and caring deeply for the environment, they chose to rename the farm “Deep Rooted Organics” and made the leap to become certified organic immediately.
Early on, Tiffany reached out to USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service and learned about seasonal high tunnels through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program. She applied for the program and received funding. As a beginning farmer, Tiffany qualified for special incentives and streamlined delivery of technical and financial assistance.
The completed seasonal high tunnel at Deep Rooted Organics has been invaluable to extend their growing season to provide the surrounding community with healthy, organic, local food for much of the year.
Because the first high tunnel was such a success, Deep Rooted Organics applied for funding through EQIP in 2020 to expand their fresh produce and cut flower capacity with an additional seasonal high tunnel.
To meet their soil health goals, Tiffany and Jimmy also applied for and received a contract through the Conservation Stewardship Program in 2014 to improve the soil health of the remaining 15 acres of land on the farm that had become worn out from prior conventional farming methods. They have since renewed the contract to implement more soil health practices.
The couple is committed to improving the land and developing healthy ecosystems. They recently started using solar energy on the farm to improve energy use. Moving forward, Tiffany has plans to partner with NRCS again to complete a pollinator planting to provide more habitat for beneficial insects and pollinators.
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