An Enterprising Lady Who Loves Farming
Eliza Brown loves farming and attributes that to her parents who were avid back-yard gardeners. She decided to pursue her gardening interests in a serious way by starting her own business farming on 1¼ acres in the Devil's Slide area of the coastal town of Pacifica just a few miles south of San Francisco. Since Pacifica shares the same climate as San Francisco, Eliza has limited her crops to those that thrive in the west Bay Area's cool and foggy summer weather. Farming on only 1¼ acres, she's probably one of the smallest farmers coming to San Francisco's Ferry Plaza Farmers' Market and has only enough produce to sell at this Saturday morning market.
Following the Seasons
For Eliza, farming is not a year-round job. From November to March, when her farm is not producing, Eliza picks up odd jobs, most of which are not related to her farming. But beginning in March, she's back to her farm full-time and has her first crops coming to the Market by mid-June. Because her operation is small, she doesn't have room to grow her own seedlings. Once she has selected the seeds for the coming season, she turns them over to a friend in Santa Cruz, who grows them to the "transplant" stage for her. From there, Eliza takes over and runs her farm single-handedly throughout the growing season.
|The Lettuce Station
True to the name of her operation, Eliza grows Greens --mainly lettuce. Her stand is an undulating field of red and green leafy heads. She grows only 5 varieties and has most of them available throughout the season. You'll find Red Leaf, Green Leaf, Red Butter, Red Oak and Sierra. The Sierra variety Eliza admits is not the most beautiful, but it's the sweetest of these 5 varieties and she encourages customers to give it a try. All of her lettuce heads are huge and at 75¢ a head, there're a real bargain!
From time to time, Eliza also has a few herbs and small quantities of chard and kale. As a small sideline, she also makes vinegars infused with nasturtium blossom and sage leaf.
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