Visit to Eastern Shore Virginia Experiment Station in Painter, VA
PROJECT LEADER(S): Thomas M Campbell
IMPACT: Funds awarded to Pasquotank County in 2004 have been used to organize trips to Eastern Shore Virginia Experiment Station in Painter, VA, performing research on potatoes, tomatoes, snap beans, eggplants, peppers and cucumbers. A field Day held there June 28 highlighted research very relevant to growers in northeastern North Carolina due to similar topography and growing climate. After these small tours, a series of meetings was held in January and February 2005 getting input from attendees as to more places they wished to visit. Ultimately, 26 people attended these meetings, some of them children of families interested in new enterprises such as specialty melons, berries, tree fruits, and cut flowers.
SUMMARY: Enroute visits were made to two roadside stands buying many items wholesale and reselling them retail and one nursery raising trees and shrubs for wholesale sale.
A Fall Folklife festival in Chesapeake Virginia was also visited where vendors represented growers of vegetables, pick-your-own blueberries, strawberries, sweet corn, and a number of animals. In addition, others hold school tours and other agri-tourism events at their farms.
Ideas were compiled and plans are being made to visit a retired couple in southern Currituck County who sell bramble berries, fancy vegetables, and cut flowers to restaurant owners on the Outer Banks barrier islands.
Another trip is anticipated to visit Chatham County and the Carrboro Farmers Market after it opens in March.
The grant has been a great incentive to help motivate audiences to get out of their shells and explore new ideas.