The house at 5108 Barton Road in Williamston looks like any other house. There are trees out front, a few cars parked in the driveway and a garage door wide open, giving people a glimpse of the backyard. All seems normal until the sound of dogs, chickens and alpacas fill the air. Yes, alpacas. In the backyard of this home lies Circle 6 Alpacas, a fiber production farm that houses 30 alpacas, one goat, three horses, two dogs, five cats and 10 chickens.
By Julie Campbell
The Meridian Times Staff Reporter
Every business has an off-season. At most places, it just depends on the weather. However, certain weather conditions tend to be more harsh on some businesses than others. For the plant market, winter isn’t easy. For the plant markets in states like Michigan, winter really isn’t easy.
With the hot summer days behind us, Swallowtail Farm of Mason isn’t going to let the upcoming cold weather put a damper on its business. After becoming certified through the Michigan Department of Agriculture to begin production of preserves for distribution last year, Swallowtail decided to add a large hoop house to extend its growing seasons. Swallowtail, known for its U-pick raspberries plans on having a selection of salad greens including lettuce, spinach, pepper, Asian greens, baby kale, cucumbers, beets, pumpkins, butternut squash and even eggs for the winter. All vegetables are free of synthetic chemicals
Pumpkins come in various sizes for all carving, decorating and eating needs, with prices ranging between $2 and $5. Butternut squash is 50 cents a pound.
After one of the most persistent winters that anybody can recall, farmers in the Holt area are not curtailing expectations for their summer crops just yet. The middle of April typically marks the time of year for farmers to begin planting corn in Michigan. However, the unusually cold weather of the past few months is delaying those plans. “Some crops are definitely going to be harvested later than the past few years,” said Farm Bureau agent Dennis Greenman. “Corn and soybean harvests are going to be late if the ground doesn’t warm up soon.
GRAND LEDGE – Olson Farm renewed its leasing contract with City of Grand Ledge to rent tillable acreage at the Grand Ledge Abrams Municipal Airport. Agreement
The Abrams Municipal Airport is on the edge of the City and has tillable vacant airport land. Olson Farms has rented this tillable acreage at the Grand Ledge airport for the past three years and the Council renewed the contract for three more years on 14 April 2014. “The farmer has been working with us in the past, and it’s a continuation of the past agreement,” said City Administrator and Airport Advisory Commission manager, Jon Bayless. This Farm promotes the development of the economy by paying rent for the City of Grand Ledge in the use of the farmland and generating incomes from selling the crops, said Bayless.
By Danielle Woodward
Mason Times staff writer
Donkeys brayed and onlookers cheered as the Mason Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon cutting April 20 for Turning Pointe Donkey Rescue, celebrating the start of the facility’s seasonal public tours. The nonprofit Michigan based organization gave its first public tour that Saturday as part of its mission to inform the public of the need for donkey rescue. “Businesses and organizations in the Mason area (Mason and Dansville) are invited to be members of the chamber. The farm joined recently to boost its community awareness and networking opportunities,” said Mason Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Doug Klein. Turning Pointe, which operates out of Dansville, is dedicated to, “the health and welfare of miniature, standard and mammoth donkeys,” according the its website.