The Frugalista Life

Living my best frugal life.

Life Farms CSA lets families, individuals have their pick at fresh, harvested produce

Earlier this summer, I worked with the Enoch D. Davis Urban Youth Farm so I guess I can say I have a little bit of farming experience. A couple weeks ago I drove out to Life Farms in Clearwater to interview Managing Partner Rowland Milam. Before I could start with my questions, he told me everything I needed to know anyway. I learned about the history of the land, what kinds of produce is on the land, and he and Jochen Essig gave me a tour around the farm. I was so grateful at the end when I took home a little haul of fresh veggies and sunflowers.

Life Farms is getting ready to start the seventh season of the CSA, or community supported agriculture. Anyone can join the CSA and receive produce on a weekly basis. You can also find Life Farms selling their produce on the weekends at the St. Pete Saturday Market and Dunedin Downtown Market.

“The farm life isn’t anything new to Rowland Milam. He grew up on one near Greenville, South Carolina. He raised angus there, and the farm is still in his family to this day.

In 2012, Milam left the corporate world behind and founded his six-acre Life Farms, at 2759 Woodring Dr. in Clearwater Within months of acquiring the land, the seasoned farmer already had crops ready for harvesting.

Life Farms is the only land-based organic farm in Pinellas County. It focuses on cultivating vegetables, herbs and microgreens organically — which means no synthetic fertilizers or pesticides. Milam is currently in the process of getting Life Farms USDA-certified.

“We had product to sell at our 2013 market. That’s when we started our community supported agriculture [project],” Milam explains. 

The farm’s first CSA, or Community Supported Agriculture, included an assortment of 150 varieties of vegetables, fruits, and herbs. There are 100 members in the CSA, and the program is open to the public, with a few stipulations.

New members are accepted until the total amount of shares sell out. Membership depends on share size (family or individual), and a seasonal fee ranging between $110 to $1,700 must be paid upfront. For instance, a bi-weekly share of vegetables, herbs and microgreens will cost you $490 or $27.20 a week.”

Read more about Life Farms here.


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