Blue Gate Farm
Vision & Mission Farm Animals Farm Buildings
Our vision is to create an economically and ecologically self-sustaining homestead that provides an ongoing connection to the Beebout land for our family, our guests and ourselves. Fundamental to this vision are naturally based production methods including composting; rotational planting & grazing methods; integrated pest management; rainwater collection; prairie restoration responsible timber & wetland management; limited dependence on petroleum products and public utilities; and no synthetic herbicides, pesticides or fertilizers.
Blue Gate Farm provides Certified Naturally Grown specialty fruits & vegetables, raw honey, free-range eggs and alfalfa hay, all sustainably raised on our small family farm for the benefit and enjoyment of our CSA members and Farmers Market customers.
Over time our flock (about 170 birds) has included Araucanas, Barred Rocks, Buff Orpingtons, Gold Stars, Isa Browns, and Rhode Island Reds that spend their days pecking through chemical-free pasture. Their diet is supplemented with non-medicated and hormone-free feed (primarily protein), scratch grains and waste from our produce operation (those bruised tomatoes or wilted greens we won't sell to our customers). We gather their fresh and beautiful brown, blue and green eggs daily.
We practice good husbandry and take bio-security measures with our poultry. This includes cleaning waters and feeders regularly, keeping the coops in fresh bedding, securing the birds at night, keeping migratory waterfowl from our pasture, and monitoring who comes in contact with our birds. Part of good husbandry is being vigilant and inspecting the flock every day (in reality multiple times per day) for signs of stress, illness, injury or predation. With signs of illness or multiple deaths in the flock, we would contact appropriate professionals to determine the cause and proceed accordingly.
All of our dogs work on the farm. Their primary jobs are protecting our livestock (chickens and alpacas) and pushing deer and varmints away from the gardens. They are the unofficial supervisors of any task happening on the farm, our "doorbells", informing us when any cars come onto our property and then greeting those visitors with reckless enthusiasm.
We adopted a pair of alpacas (Boris & Abigail) in the fall of 2013, they are beautiful creatures we keep for their fleece which Jill spins into yarn. On August 14, 2015 Abi gave birth to a cria (baby alpaca) whom we named Percy in honor of the Perseid meteor shower, during which he was born. While the alpacas are a source of fiber and fertility (their manure is composted and applied to our fields), the entertainment that they provide is the real benefit.
Like most farms, we have a number of buildings about the place which serve specific purposes and one or two that are a general catch-all.
We have two high tunnels that serve as protected growing space and allow us to grow and harvest crops year round. They are also a delightful space in which to spend time during the deep of winter.
In 2010 Jill's father began construction on a new Packing Barn to replace the old packing shed. Spurts and stops but finally moved into fall of 2011. Steady improvements since, a storage loft, real plumbing, stainless steel equipment, a walk-in cooler, both indoor and outdoor wash stations and a flush toilet!