As a child, this was an activity that my grandmother and I did every weekend during the summer months that it took place. Usually June – September local farmer’s markets began opening around the country. Farmers, 4-H members, homemakers, and even normal people like myself sell their produce, farm raised meats, plants, and really anything hand made or produced item.
Even as a child I learned so much about gardening, seasonal plants, herbs, and still use everything I learned to this day. I of course learned lots of great stuff from my grandparents, and dad but I still got to find out about things as a child that I knew nothing about.
Last year, was the first year that I took my son. At the time he was one and a half so he didn’t really understand what was going on, but he certainly enjoyed all the fresh fruits I bought. So far this year, I’ve taught him about the growing process, gardening care (his favorite because he gets to water garden!), and now he’s getting to see what grows on all the plants! Strawberries and the Tiny Sensation lilies where his favorites!
While you are sampling, it’s a great opportunity to ask questions about how they grow their produce, what they do differently than others, and where they items are grown. All the farmers and sellers are always happy to share their tips and of course their produce. Many offer pamphlets or their instructions on how to grow high quality produce.
Let your child help you pick out a fruit or veggie and use it in a dish for dinner or desert. While you’re cooking you can teach your child about it! If you only serve your family organic fruits and veggies, don’t worry, everything must be grown without the aid of pesticides.
Fruits and veggies, aren’t the only thing sold at the farmer’s market! A wide variety of herbs and other plants are also sold. You can find out about which plants grow best where you live and basically anything you want to know about herbs. You can find out which herbs are best in what foods, how to grow your own herb garden, and even what can be grown during each growing season. This is where I found out I can have a summer herb garden and a winter herb garden and I no longer pay high prices for fresh herbs!! I can just walk outside and cut whatever I need for what I’m cooking that day. I also learned how to dry and freeze herbs that I harvest so I have them any time of the year.
The famer’s market is also a great place to get fresh, grade A beef, pork, chicken, and of course fresh yard eggs. All livestock is feed organic grains and feed and the meats are never frozen. Rather it is freshly slaughtered and and sold right after it is packaged. Although the meat is VERY expensive, it was the best steaks I’ve ever bought!! I’ve even seen beef jerk and boudin sold here. All grade A quality beef, fresh, and home-made!!
The farmer’s market is a wonderful place for your children and you, to learn and experience new things! It is also a great way to support local farmer’s! These people depend on this as a source of income and take pride in the quality of their products. When I purchase anything from here I know that I am feeding my family the best of the best in my area and I love the fact that it is ALL grown locally in my community!