Tina Davies (nee Roberts) grew up in Ontario. In the early 70's, Arthur & I purchased a dairy farm in Stirling in Eastern Ontario, bought pure-bred Ayrshire heifers and eventually became ''Emmerdale Ayrshires", raising pigs & poultry until the heifers grew & freshened. We raised our 3 children, Melissa, Caitlin & Alex on Emmerdale Farm.
After a leave of absence from the farm for a few years, we moved to PEI in 2004 to farm organically, and established "Emmerdale Eden Farm". PEI was our new 'Eden". We immediately became involved with promoting the growth of organic farming on the Island by joining PEI Certified Organic Producer's Co-op and Acorn (Atlantic Canadian Organic Regional Network).
Creating a sustainable, chemical-free habitat, rich in diversity, while providing safe healthful food for our family and community has been our mission.
I could not help but be a seed-saver, watching my mom & grandma forever collecting seeds at home and on outings to parks & botanical gardens. In the past few years, seed-saving has become as much of a priority as growing the market produce! Fellow market gardener, Lorna McMaster & myself are in our 4th year of creating & promoting the "PEI Seed Alliance", our small local seed company that provides PEI locally adapted vegetable, herbs & flower seeds from our favourite varieties. Many thanks to Acorn and the Bauta Foundation for providing advanced seed training through workshops, trips and hands-on training.
Food security and seed sovereignty for our province and for Canada is our major priority, as we seek out, trial and grow-out seed crops each year to see which varieties best suit and adapt to our Island's unique climate. Through seed-saving (and educating new seed-savers) we can not only preserve our local food/seed heritage, but safeguard our food supply at the local level for future generations.
Hello! My name is Arthur Davies. Welcome to the Summerside Farmers' Market!
Rev. Dr. Arthur Davies, was born and raised in England. My farming experience started as a young teen, working with my brother in law on the farm where he worked, in England. When I came to Canada i had a brief experience of working on another farm, again with my brother in law. After meeting my wife, we worked for a while on a dairy farm in Hampton, Ontario. Within a few years we had our own farm in Stirling, Ontario, raising and milking Ayrshire cows.
I was ordained in 1989 as a minister in The United Church of Canada. It wasn't until 2004, when we moved to a church in PEI, that we resolved to get back into farming... but in a different way. While our experience had been in conventional farming, it no longer fit our thoughts of concern with the environment and healthy living; we therefore started an certified organic farm and continue the process at the present time.
Over the last number of years we have raised beef cattle, pigs, chicken, geese and sheep. We also had a rather large vegetable garden, all organically certified. Having to purchase all of our grains for the pigs, sheep and chickens was an economic colossus, and thus, we ended our livestock farming to concentrate on fruit and vegetables.
We are always looking to find new ways of farming organically, and being economically viable. Seed saving has become an important part of our work, and the opportunities to share with others, a great treat for us. Heirloom tomatoes have also raised an awareness of such a variety of tastes, colours and shapes and along with garlic mainstays on our farm supplemented by many other tasty vegetables and various fruits.
After being part time on the farm for a number of years, I retired in 2016 and am now full time on the farm.
It is seems that the older we get, the move involved we become as we continue to grow our farm and acreage used. We believe in what we are doing. We all have a commitment to preserve and nourish our farm land for better growth and healthier produce. It is time to put natural life into our soil and make it alive again. We believe that organic farming builds rather than depletes soil organic matter, making it a more sustainable system. It uses less energy and causes 40% fewer greenhouse gases.