Ian Zeglin – Manager of Garden Operations
Ian has been working around the Greenacres’ gardens for quite a few years and recently became our Manager of Garden Operations. We sat down with Ian to discuss his new role, the importance of local, generative farming, and what he looks forward to growing most in 2020.
How did you get into gardening?
I studied nutrition in college and wanted to understand food from the source. My first summer out of college I took a summer garden position with Greenacres and fell in love with the production side of growing produce. In 2014, I was offered the opportunity to manage the farm at Blue Oven Bakery. I spent three seasons with Blue Oven, then helped with the Camp Washington Urban Farm project, before eventually finding my way back to Greenacres.
What makes gardening at farms like Greenacres special?
Farms like Greenacres give you the opportunity to explore methodologies that have an impact on things like environmental health, the health of a person who is purchasing our product, and an opportunity to teach others why this matters.
We grow vegetables with a focus on quality. We start with the basics, focusing on soil that is abundant and alive. We believe that soil is much more than a few essential minerals. We believe that biologically active soil that is rich in minerals makes healthier plants which makes a better tasting and more nourishing product.
What are some of the challenges with gardening in Southwest Ohio?
The beautiful thing about growing here is that we are able to grow almost everything, both warm and cold weather crops. It also means that, to an extent, we deal with just about every pest and issue that affects gardens. This makes it a uniquely challenging region to grow in because you need to understand a large spectrum of what you might run into throughout the entire season.
What are you looking forward to growing most in 2020?
Potatoes! We haven’t had a great crop of potatoes at Greenacres in a long time. It’s a big focus for us this year. I love growing a lot of the things you would grow if you were running a homestead. They let you make a complete meal with things you grew only on your farm. Our ultimate goal is to have potatoes available most of the year.
Ian will be speaking at Turner Farms upcoming event: “A CONVERSATION WITH FARMERS & MARKET GARDENERS” on February 5. This should be a great event. If you’re interested, learn more here