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|Essex - Ashlyns Organic Farm Shop|
Ashlyns Organic Farm ShopEpping Road,
Our Farm Shop is situated in North Weald, Essex. It is stocked packed with organic fruit and vegetables, plus a host of other organic food and drink. We're adding to the list all the time. We involve local organic suppliers as often as we can - the less miles the food travels, the fresher it is. The cart lodge at the Farm Shop contains an organic butchers shop.
The Collins family started farming at Ashlyns in 1970. At that time, in spite of its high population, Essex was something of an Organic desert with only a few small scale box schemes in operation. Organic farming which aims to harmonise food growing with nature and wildlife appealed to us and in 1997 we began converting land to organic production. In 1999 when our first land reached conversion we started growing vegetables as well as the potatoes, onions and wheat we’d originally planned. The farm already had a large number of small fields, and assisted by a 5 year Countryside Stewardship Scheme we are carrying out many environmental improvements: arable field margins, recreating water meadows, beetle banks, maintaining ancient hedgerows and woodlands and new plantings. The entire 1450 acres is now farmed organically.
We need as many hedges and beetle banks as possible to harbour the predatory insects we rely on to control aphids. Birds, butterflies and bumblebees thrive on the clover leys we grow to maintain soil fertility. Instead of the monoculture of winter wheat and oil seed rape that has led to such a decline in bird populations we are growing a multitude of different crops providing diverse habitats where wild flowers and insects can co-exist.
Since we converted to organic farming Ashlyns has become more vibrant and diverse. Wildlife has increased, hedges and beetle banks have been established. Wild flower grasslands line the Cripsey Brook and our new lake has an island and pools for wildfowl.
Creation date : 19/07/2007 @ 15:51
Last update : 12/09/2009 @ 20:46
Category : Essex
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