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Appeal of hydroponic lettuce is growing

POSTED: September 18, 2013 5:35 p.m.
 

I love meeting interesting people in our community, especially when I know readers will benefit and can help get the word out.

I can’t wait for all of you to meet Jeff Adams and hear about Circle A Farms. Who knew a business like this was in our midst?

Jeff grows hydroponic lettuce right here in Forsyth County, and I have to tell you it is the best lettuce I’ve tasted. (And to all of you skeptics out there — no, lettuce is not all created equal.)

I have been buying hydroponic lettuce for years at grocery stores or farmers markets, and I could tell immediately Jeff’s lettuce was of the highest quality.

Jeff’s story, and how all of this came to be, is an interesting one.

Growing up in rural Alabama, Jeff dreamed of owning a farm. Instead, he found himself in the construction industry. Then, he and wife Ana started their family.

The family quickly grew as the couple had five children in a short span. As his wife, a veterinarian, busied herself taking care of the kids, as well as opening Hamby Road Animal Hospital, Jeff never gave up on his dream of having some type of farm.

“One day, I read an article about hydroponic farming and just started doing research,” Jeff said.

After much thought, more research and prayer, the couple decided to take the leap. As Jeff put it, “I quit my job and just went for it.”

That was just two years ago. Jeff’s father helped him build the 14,000-square-foot greenhouse and get everything installed to begin planting.

The lettuce, grown in purified water, is completely pesticide free. In fact, you don’t even have to wash it. There are no birds that could leave droppings, no bugs and no dirt to worry about.

Jeff’s crew wears gloves when they harvest, so no human hands touch the pristine leaves. There is a modern water system that goes into growing the lettuce and ensuring a superior product.

There is even a computer that analyzes the water 24 hours a day to monitor its PH, temperature and nutrient level, all of which can be adjusted as needed.

Who knew so much went into growing lettuce?

Circle A is keeping busy, harvesting 3,000 heads of lettuce a week. The farm even supplies several elementary schools in our county.

So where can you get this amazing lettuce? Many places, including stores and farmers markets. I also discovered the farm delivers to a neighborhood right across the street from mine.

Circle A currently grows Bibb, spring mix and Romaine lettuce, all of which are fantastic. They are so fresh and crisp, you will know immediately how superior they are.

The farm also grows kale and basil. The prices are reasonable and competitive with what’s available in the grocery stores.

Nothing can compete with bringing home lettuce that was cut that morning. Mine stayed fresh for much longer than the usual lettuce I buy.

Even when buying organic produce in the stores, who knows how long and far it has traveled to reach you.

I must say, local business owners always inspire me. To start your own company takes so much courage, not to mention determination and nearly constant work.

I love that we live in a community that truly does support locally owned businesses.

Please check out Circle A Farms. I promise you won’t be disappointed. And e-mail me and let me know what you think.

 

Adlen Robinson is author of “Home Matters: The Guide to Organizing Your Life and Home.” E-mail her at contact@adlenrobinson.com.

 

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