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Local

Organic farm in Wayne receives grant for beneficial insects

Ellen Kamps and Jeff Hughes working at their Foxtrot Organic Farm in Wayne. The farm received a grant to support its commitment to organic farming. The farm sells organic produce at a farm stand in partnership with the St. Charles Park District’s Primrose Farm.
Ellen Kamps and Jeff Hughes working at their Foxtrot Organic Farm in Wayne. The farm received a grant to support its commitment to organic farming. The farm sells organic produce at a farm stand in partnership with the St. Charles Park District’s Primrose Farm.

WAYNE – Foxtrot Organic Farm in Wayne recently received a $3,359 grant from The FruitGuys Community Fund to support its commitment to organic farming, the company announced in a news release.

Foxtrot Organic Farm is owned by Jeff Hughes and Ellen Kamps, who have an organic farm stand in partnership with the St. Charles Park District’s Primrose Farm, 5N726 Crane Road, St. Charles Township, the release stated.

The grant will enable Hughes and Kamps to establish a perennial hedgerow for beneficial insects and pollinators – such as bees, the release stated. The hedgerow will increase soil health when the farmers apply organic cover crops and compost, the release stated.

"Because they are perennial plants, they will bloom in early spring and provide pollen and nectar for pollinators before other plants have bloomed," Hughes said. "The perennials will also bloom through late fall, when other plants are done blooming."

The farmers will also use the grant to buy a tilther, which is a tool that helps preserve the topsoil layer and combats weed seeds in the soil, thereby reducing time spent weeding, the release stated.

"The tilther tills only the top two inches of the soil, while other tillers typically disturb the soil six to eight inches down," Hughes said. "When you till, it destroys the organic matter and structure of the soil and can lead to erosion. By tilling only the top two inches, it preserves the soil structure that is already existing."

The FruitGuys is a San Francisco-based company that delivers boxes of farm-fresh fruit to workplaces across America through in an effort to promote healthy snacking, the release stated.

Each year, The FruitGuys Community Fund, a fiscally sponsored project of Community Initiatives, provides grants to small farms and sustainability projects that impact environmental, economic and community health, the release stated.

FoxTrot Organic Farm is one of 10 farms across the country chosen to receive a grant from The FruitGuys Community Fund, the release stated.

More information is available by visiting www.foxtrotorganicfarm.com.

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