Produce Application

Cloaked Creek Farm

Owner: Rollin Caswell

Address:
4511 E. Holland Lake Road
Sheridan, MI 48884
Montcalm County

daytime phone: (616) 522-7279

Application Date: 2018-04-04

Applicant Details

Please briefly tell us why you are applying to be part of the Certified Naturally Grown program: *
started growing and selling produce at our farm stand and also farmers markets. I would like to grow produce naturally and chemical free as I feel that I would have a more superior product as so far as knowing that our customers can be confident that our produce is safe and healthy for their families. I also have been reading a lot about doing this for a while now, and I feel like I'm ready to take this new direction. I am very interested in going with the hugelkultur method as i have a swamp with lots of dead and decaying trees, and could build my soil and water less over time.
Are you currently third party Certified for your produce operation by any other organization (Organic, Biodynamic, etc)? *
no
Have you ever been certified in the past? *
no
Have you ever been denied certification? *
no
How did you hear about Certified Naturally Grown? *
came across this from a farmers market that I sold produce at last year on their facebook page.

General Farm Information

Farm Acreage you want listed as Certified Naturally GrownTM:
Total Farm Acreage you actually GROW on: *
2.5
Number of above acreage that you own: *
31
Number of above acreage that you lease: *
0
Do you have other acreage in "Conventional" Agricultural Systems? *
no
General Listed Acreage Breakdown
Veg Crops:
.75
Fruit Crops:
Hay:
Grains/Beans:
Sugarbush:
Other Acreage:
Please check all items you grow and will market as Certified Naturally GrownTM *











Please Specify Any Other Items:
Please check all markets you grow for (this will be displayed on your farm profile to help potential buyers find you). *











Please Specify Other Markets:

Farmland Management and Practices

Primary Tillage System: *
traditional, plow, disc, cultivator, but I am going to slowly convert into the hugelkultur raised bed system. I'm also going to use plastic as a means for weed control and water retention with drip irrigation as needed.
Do you use Cover Crops? *
yes
If yes, please list: *
rye
Do you use Compost? *
yes
If yes, please note general sources (on farm, purchased complete, local grass clippings, local dairy, etc.): *
on farm. vegetative waste goes in the compost pile along with purchased manure as needed or when available.
Please list application rates. Give a specific amount or range (for example: one to two tons per acre, ten wheelbarrow loads per 1,000 square feet, or 1-2 inches deep). Do not answer "varies". *
mix about a shovel scoop in and around plants and mix with soil mulch with wood chips
Do you use Manure? *
yes
If yes, please note general sources (local dairy, horse farm, etc.): *
from our chickens and goats, (we don't have goats any longer but still have some manure)
Please list application rates. Give a specific amount or range (for example: one to two tons per acre, ten wheelbarrow loads per 1,000 square feet, or 1-2 inches deep). Do not answer "varies". *
will be incorporating manure after composting into beds. my guess would be about a wheel barrow load per 4x10 ft. bed
What time of year do you apply the manure? *
fall would be the time to apply
Do you apply any non-composted Manure within 120 days of veg-crop harvesting? *
no
Please list any other brought in fertility sources that you use (specific rock powders, lime, soybean / alfalfa meal, specific purchased pre-mixes, etc)and how often it's used. If you indicate a name brand product, please also specify the ingredient/s. *
at them moment, Alaska fish fertilizer. derived from fish solubles and phosphoric acid.
Have any chemical fertilizers been applied to the fields you are seeking Certification for in the last three years (36 months)? *
no
Have any non-acceptable pesticides and/or herbicides been applied to these fields in the last 3 years? *
no
Do you use Professional Soil Testing services? *
no
Describe your primary weed problems AND methods of control. Do not answer "none". You MUST indicate either actual weed challenges and/or LIKELY challenges, and you must ALSO indicate how you manage (or would manage) them. If you indicate a product, also specify how often it's used. *
primary weeds that are an issue are fox tail, quack grass, lambs quarter. Method for weed control is to use plastic with mulch on top, in between rows, cultivator on tractor. also hoeing and manually pulling as needed.
Describe your primary insect challenges AND methods of control. Do not answer "none". You MUST indicate either actual pest challenges and/or LIKELY challenges, and you must ALSO indicate how you manage (or would manage) them. If you indicate a product, also specify how often it's used. *
I have not had real issues with insects other than Japanese beetles, and for that, I just let them run their course, mainly was a problem on pole beans. I am growing potatoes this year, so I anticipate potato Beatles, and will have to monitor closely. If the threshold exceeds past a point where heavy damage on the plants, diatomaceous earth or maybe neem oil and non detergent liquid soap. I haven't tried these methods in the past, but research suggest that they do work.
Describe your primary disease challenges AND methods of control. Do not answer "none". You MUST indicate either actual disease challenges and/or LIKELY challenges, and you must ALSO indicate how you manage (or would manage) them. If you indicate a product, also specify how often it's used. *
late blight on my tomatoes, powdery mildew on cucumbers and squash plants. crop rotation seems to be helping with the issue, as well as selecting seeds that have somewhat of a resistance. I also prune up leaves that are close to the ground, apply mulch over the soil, and water in the early morning. If a plant gets hit, I watch closely and if needed, I pull the plant and burn in the burn barrel. I have not used any chemicals whatsoever before.
Please list the water source you use for crop irrigation. If source is public river, pond or lake, please note the name: *
water source will come from stream that runs through my property. In between mud lake and cedar lake.
Are there any known contaminants in the irrigation water? *
no
Are you a maple producer who seeks to certify your sugarbush? *
no

Seeds, Transplants and Buffers

Do you purchase or grow using any Genetically Modified seeds? *
no
Do you use any chemically treated seeds in your operation? *
no
Do you grow your own transplants? *
yes
Are they grown using Naturally Grown/Organic methods? *
yes
If they're not grown according to CNG methods, please list them here. This produce may not be sold as Certified Naturally Grown. (If they are, put "N/A") *
n/a
Do you purchase any transplants from outside sources? *
no
Chemical/Spray Drift and Buffers:
Is there any likelihood of Chemical/Spray drift contamination of your fields? *
no
Do you have an adequate buffer to protect yourself from potential contamination? *
yes
Please describe your buffer. Be as specific as possible. On all sides, how far is it from your crops to the next closest use (road, conventional crop, residential yard)? Be sure to specify what is grown on neighboring land that is in agricultural use. For example: To the north and east, a wooded area of at least 100 yards separates us from the neighbor's corn fields, to the south is a fallow field at least 100 yards deep separating us from the road, and to the west about 60 feet separates our crops from a field where conventional corn and soybeans are grown. *
south side Mennonite dairy farm, crop rotation of corn, alfalfa. I have a ditch with vegetative growth and some pine tree starts that along with the road gives me around 30 ft. plus I don't plant 10 feet from the ditch. to the east is vacant land that nobody uses so no threat there. to the north is my woods so no issue there and to the west is my barn.

Agreements

Please indicate your agreement with the following statements by checking the boxes.
I will not label, or in any way lead consumers to believe that produce not raised in accord with CNG standards is Certified Naturally GrownTM. *
I understand that I have to complete at least one (and hopefully more) Certification Inspection(s) of another farm in my area each year, and that the inspection will NOT be of the same farmer that inspected me. *
I have reviewed the Certified Naturally Grown certification standards, I understand them, and I will abide by them. I understand that if I have any questions I may contact CNG for clarification. *
You may use this space to tell us anything else you think we should know about your farm:
this is going to be a challenging and learning experience. certification or not, I'm still going to commit to being a natural grower and not take the lazy way and support evil corporations selling poison.