AS TOLD BY JONI MCCARTY, AGRICULTURAL CURATOR
Good Morning! (Nearly) each day as the sun rises, I send an email to our team at Homestead Manor with notes about our progress, what we’re planting, what we’re harvesting, what we’re preventing and what we’re learning. My note to our crew today elicited some of the most excited responses ot date:
On Tuesday, we had the pleasure of hosting a tour for students from Harpeth Hall School, their mentors and their parents. These particular scholars have an interest in aquaponics and have recently developed a self-sustainable gardening system for villages in North Africa and Central Asia.
Did I mention they are the ripe old age of TWELVE? Goodness, what an education these youngsters possess!
As we toured the property and gave them a history lesson of Thompson’s Station and the role that Homestead has played throughout the years, they listened with rapt attention. But it wasn’t until we walked to the farm that their interest was really piqued.
We were standing in the garden, discussing various methods of irrigation, planting and soil conditions when Casey (my husband) received a call from Chef Carlos. The timing couldn’t have been more perfect!
“Casey, this is Chef, do you have any spaghetti squash available today? I have a special dish I want to serve.”
Casey wasn’t sure what we had, but told him we would check.
The students listened to this exchange and were more than happy to help Farmer Casey look through the squash jungle for spaghetti squash. A quick browse and–wouldn’t you know it–there were enough spaghetti squash for each of the children to pick one and bring to the kitchen!
Chef Carlos received the offering of the children with delight, answering the student’s questions on the creative dish he planned to create. Soon after, they were able to taste and enjoy the delectable dish served with grilled eggplant (picked just that morning) and parmesan crusted chicken. It was perfecto!
All in all, we learned as much from the children as they did from us. However, I think the memory made of watching that just picked squash delivered from the hands of children to the chef and then served in the restaurant…THAT will make the most lasting impression!