Ohio City Farm has fresh produce and herbs in mind for holiday gift giving

Although winter has barely settled into Northeast Ohio, the Refugee Response farmers at Ohio City Farm are already planning for next year’s crops—and offering up some special treats from the past summer’s harvest.

For the first time, Ohio City Farm has opened early purchase of its 2021 Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) packages—sales usually start in March—and the farm is now selling dried herbs.

“We have such a robust CSA program,” says Michael Bartunek, senior farm manager. “Every season it seems like we get someone saying, ‘I want to give it as a gift.’ So, we just decided to do it early.”

Ohio City Farm herbsThe farm sells 250 shares in its CSA program each year, and Bartunek says they sell out every year—even when sales start in March. “I think by March they’re tired of winter—and fresh vegetables in March sound good,” he says of the CSA customers. “[This year], we’ll just keep it open until it sells out.”

Bartunek says there are 50 whole shares available and 200 of the smaller Farmer’s Choice shares for sale. Additionally, this year the farm is offering two add-on packages to the CSAs: a six-week fall extension program and a 12-week flower share.

The extension program tacks on six extra orders of fall vegetables through Thanksgiving, while the flower share provides seasonal annual and perennial blooms and foliage that includes foraged native plants and wildflowers from Newbury-based Frayed Knot Farm, which focuses on regenerative agriculture principals and heirloom variety crops.

And for those in need of herbs for holiday meals, or looking for a special stocking stuffer, the farmers have worked to grow, dry and process herbs. Now the farm is selling a set of four favorites—Thai chili, basil, jalapeno, and parsley.

“These are some of the most popular [herbs] grown at the market,” says Bartunek, adding that the herbs are favorites of the Burmese farmers who grow them. The four one-ounce packs sell for $30 and can be shipped anywhere in the United States.

The herbs sale runs through Saturday, Dec. 12 or while supplies last. They can be ordered online here. The CSA sale runs until the shares run out. Prices for the CSAs start at $350 and go up, depending on the package. CSAs can be ordered here.

Read more articles by Karin Connelly Rice.

Karin Connelly Rice enjoys telling people's stories, whether it's a promising startup or a life's passion. Over the past 20 years she has reported on the local business community for publications such as Inside Business and Cleveland Magazine. She was editor of the Rocky River/Lakewood edition of In the Neighborhood and was a reporter and photographer for the Amherst News-Times. At Fresh Water she enjoys telling the stories of Clevelanders who are shaping and embracing the business and research climate in Cleveland.