Daily Archives: April 28, 2009

Come to the Free Soil Party!

Editor’s note: If you are looking for the column or updates about Vera Gleason, please follow this link.


Free Garden Plots available! Seven Four* 100 square foot garden plots are available to the community for immediate planting at the Hartford House in Geneseo. The plots are protected by a 6-foot, welded-wire deer fence. They have been roto-tilled, limed and fertilized with organic compost only. Soil test results of this Ovid silt loam are available. Irrigation with village water available on a barter basis.
Experienced gardeners preferred.
* Hurry! Three plots have already been taken! Call Biff at 233-5338 or e-mail him.
Limit one plot per family.


Visitors to the Hartford House this spring have noticed that change is in the air. A collection of vintage farm equipment is taking shape and four acres of the old sheep pasture east of the main driveway has been plowed up.

Part of the old pasture has also been enclosed with a 6 foot fence, but it is not, as some have thought, a new tennis court under construction. It is a deer fence intended to keep four-legged predators away from the juicy vegetables that are already growing in a new vegetable garden.

This is the first season for what owner Corrin Strong hopes will some day become a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) Farm. Corrin has over 15 years of commercial farming experience, operating a 600-acre grain farm in Caledonia from 1976-1992. This time around, he’s starting on a smaller, but more intensive, scale.

Outside the fence, he hopes to grow a few acres of sweet corn and pumpkins , however, the bulk of the land will be sown in cover crops to increase the soil’s fertility and tilth. A compost pile incorporating the manure from neighboring Big House Stables as well as grass clippings and other organic waste from the Hartford House will soon be underway.

Corrin is offering free 1oo square foot garden plots to local families. (See Ad above.) The offer is being made through this blog, by e-mail to members of the Genesee Volley Tennis Club and will be posted on Facebook. He hopes that those who take up the offer will form the nucleus of the board of directors of the future CSA. Experience gathered in this first trial season will help make better crops in the future!

Come grow with us!

P.S. The Hartford House was built by Gen. James S. Wadsworth in 1835. The General was one of the founders of the Free Soil party in New York. That party opposed the expansion of slavery and eventually merged into the newly formed Republican Party prior to the Civil War in which the General gave his life.