Lloyd Craft Farms
Lloyd and Terri Craft have lived in the Big Horn Basin for the past 35 years. Lloyd, a third generation German farmer, was raised on the farm in Manderson and so it was only natural that he would become a farmer. Terri was raised in Southern California and it was not natural that she would become a farmer! But together they have operated a farm since 1996. They sold their 365 acre farm in 2010 but retained leased acres and have continued to farm on a smaller scale. In 2012 they launched Lloyd Craft Farms CSA–successfully!
Our CSA garden is now 6 acres with two hoophouses, over 100 beds 60-393 feet long–most laid under plastic mulch–and water from a holding pond we built off the Hanover Canal that feeds our drip lines. When the water is not in the canal, we use Washakie Rural District water, run through a filter to remove the chlorine. We are not certified organic, but use organic practices on the farm–no synthetic pesticides, herbicides, or fertilizers, but things approved for Organic certification (OMRI). We are transparent and can answer any questions you have on our practices and methods. We exercise care in the handling of your food–we believe in the importance of healthy soil for healthy plants for healthy bodies.
The first year we purchased a smaller tractor and tiller specifically with the CSA in mind–as well as the hoophouses. Our banker, who loves our plan and is an active member of the CSA, fronted the money to buy a Rain-Flo Model 2400 Mini Raised Bed Mulch Layer, and a Rain-Flo Water Wheel Transplanter. I can’t imagine setting out nearly 5000 plants by hand!
Janene at Enchanted Gardens raises our bedding plants. Our pumpkins and squash have been sold through Ray & Reese’s IGA since fall of 2012…2014 they sold nearly 500 pumpkins weighing 5,876#’s…in less than a week! In 2015 we doubled that–
In 2013 we made some connections and our melons appeared in various Farmer’s Markets throughout the state and Billings, and we began selling wholesale through a buyer for restaurants and institutions. This helps to stabilize the share price for our members and diversify our business.
WHAT VEGGIES CAN YOU EXPECT?
We aren’t just a tomato and green bean garden–we LOVE variety and trying new things!
In the early Summer you have greens, Swiss chard, radishes, salad turnips…things that are lighter. In September you have tomatoes and peppers, eggplant, watermelons and cantaloupe, and in the Fall you have potatoes, cabbage, pumpkins, and other winter squash.