Clear Creek Farm
Sustainably and organically run CSA

Frequently Asked Questions


What is Community Supported Agriculture?

How would YOU benefit from a CSA?

Where is the produce grown?

How is the produce grown?

What past prior experience does the grower have?

How will you protect the crops from all manner of pests?

What is the cost for a share of the harvest? What is included?

Where will the weekly share pick up be?

What vegetables will be planted?








What is Community Supported Agriculture?

The USDA defines a CSA as a community of individuals who pledge support to a farm operation so that the farmland becomes, either legally or spiritually, the community's farm, with the growers and consumers providing mutual support and sharing the risks and benefits of food production. Members or shareholders of the farm pledge, in advance, to cover the anticipated costs of the farm operation and farmer's salary. In return, they receive a share in the farm's bounty throughout the growing season, as well as satisfaction gained from reconnecting to the land. Members also share in risks, including poor harvest due to unfavorable weather or pests. Community Supported Agriculture is a system in which consumers receive food directly from the farmers who produce it.

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How would YOU benefit from a CSA?

Everyone gains from Community Supported Agriculture. It's a model for reinvigorating the countryside with productive and profitable small organic farms. You learn where your food comes from and eat what is in season. You bear crop losses with the farmer and enjoy the bountiful crops, too. You are part of the farm. Rekindling this feeling of caring for the land in the 21st century may be as nourishing as the fresh organic vegetables you'll receive each week. Because their food is produced nearby, CSA members' food also may be more nutritious as it does not have to be picked "green" for long-distance shipping.

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Where is the produce grown?

Our farm is nestled in the heart of the Illinois Ozarks, between Bald Knob and Iron Mountain on the Shawnee Hills Wine Trail. The unique clay loam of the area provides nutrient rich natural fertility while our impoundment of rainwater filtered through our mature hardwood forest protects our crops against drought induced losses. Our farm is on State Route 127, Cobden; which is a little west of downtown Cobden.

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How is the produce grown?

Clear Creek Farm adheres to the USDA regulations for organic production. We use composted organic materials (leaves, straw, grass clippings, vegetable trimmings, horse manure, wood chips, sawdust, etc.) to build soil fertility, cover crops to trap nutrients and prevent erosion and long term crop rotations to minimize nutrient depletion. We purchase organically grown seeds whenever available. We utterly and totally reject the use of any chemical fertilizer, pesticide, herbicide or fungicides on our farm.

While we realize that these regulations are the federal government's attempt to standardize organic production we are deeply concerned about the lack of inspection, industrialization and loopholes that these regulations have spawned. The huge growth in public awareness of the negative health implications of conventional agricultural methods has been met with greatly increased availability of organic food in our country. Recent investigations into fraudulent organic fertilizers highlight the problems that arise when growers and eaters are separated by a long line of buyers, shippers, distribution hubs and retailers. When the inspector makes one announced visit to the farm per year it is easy to see how unscrupulous growers find it easy to break the rules.

It is for these reasons that we choose not to certify our land through the USDA. We believe in the philosophy of organic farming as the path to healthy people through healthy land. We maintain an open door policy on our farm in order to offer our customers to act as our inspectors. Integrity is a value that cannot be legislated. We look forward to earning your trust, the kind of trust that only exists within a community. To quote Joel Salatin, we are moving "beyond organic".

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What past prior experience does the grower have?

Adam has been growing vegetables organically for the past eleven years. His experiences include: managing 4 acres of vegetables at Narrow Ridge Earth Literacy Center in Washburn, TN; managing a 7 acre inner city community farm through AmeriCorps in Knoxville, TN; and managing a 15 member CSA in Knoxville, TN. While preparing our land for CSA we have gotten involved in Southern Illinois Agriculture by selling vegetables at The Neighborhood Co-op in Carbondale, the Anna Farmers Market, Carbondale's Farmers Market and Market Square.

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How will you protect the crops from all manner of pests?

We plan on giving our crops the jump on bugs by providing a highly fertile soil for growing. We have spread plenty of composted horse manure and autumn leaves along with various rock powders to ensure that all the plants nutritional needs are met.

We plant as early as possible in order to avoid major infestations. When necessary we employ biological controls such as Bacillus thurungensis or diotomatious earth for serious infestations. Both of these are natural and approved for organic growing.

We now have some ducks which we are experimenting letting loose to eat some of the bugs.

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What is the cost for a share of the harvest? What is included?

One share includes 20-22 weeks of vegetables we guarantee were harvested the morning they are delivered. Each week you can expect about a 1/2 bushel of fresh in-season produce. The season starts mid-late May and runs to mid-late October. The cost for one share is $350.00. A $100 deposit is required upon signing up and the remainder is due before April 15th.

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Where will the weekly share pick up be?

The specific location where you will pick up your weekly share and the day of week will be determined by our members. Usually we can find a couple days that work for most everyone who is a member.

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What vegetables will be planted?

The following is a chart of the vegetables that will be grown throughout the season. We use organic seeds when available and start all of our plants from seed. They are grown to meet all USDA Organic Certification standards. However, we are not certified.

Here are the crops and varieties that Clear Creek Farm intends to plant for the coming season. Note: 1 denotes Early Spring, 2 is Summer, and 3 is Fall. Heirloom varieties are denoted with an H. Ultimately what ends up in the share depends upon the weather.

Season: Crop: Varieties:
2-3? Beans, green and fresh Garden of Eden (H;flat), Kentucky of wonder (H;rount)
1?-2-3 Beets Bulls Blood (H), Chioggia (H)
1?, 3 Broccoli Tender Green, Premium Crop
2-3 Carrots Scarlet Nantes, YaYa
1?-2-3 Collards Champion collards (H), Large leaf and Sylvetta Arugula(H)
2, 3? Sweet Corn Bodacious Yellow, Fleet Bicolor, Silver Queen
2, 3? Cucumbers Marketmore 76, General Lee (H)
2?, 3 Eggplant
3 Leeks King Richard (H)
1, 2?, 3 Lettuce Black Seedd Simpson (green), Deer Tongue (red and green), Buttercrunch Romaine, Anuenue (head)
1-2-3 Kale Red Russian Kale (H), Beedy's Camden Kale (H) (green)
3 Mustard
1?-2-3 Onions Evergreen Hardy White (H-green), Redwing (red), Clear Dawn (H-yellow)
1, 3? Peas Sugar Snap (edible pod), Little Marvel (shell pea)
2?, 3 Peppers New Ace Sweet Peppers (bell), Early Jalapeno (H), Ho Chi Minh (H-hot)
1?-2-3 Potatoes Red Skin, Yukon Gold
1, 3 Radishes Daikon, French Breakfast
1, 3 Spinach Space and Tyee (flat)
2-3? Squash, Summer Yellow Crook Neck (H), Costatata Romanesca Zucchini (H), Sun Burst Patty Pan
2-3 Squash, Winter Waltham Butternut, Table Queen Acorn, Baby Blue Hubbard
2-3? Tomatoes Brandywine (H), Cherokee Purple (H), Cherry (H), Plu (H), Pear (H), Jet Star
1-2?-3 Turnips Purple Top White Globe (H)
1-2-3 Herbs Parsley, Basil, Cilantro, Epazote, Mint
3 Gourds Luffa, Assorted Decorative
2-3 Garlic Polish White, German Extra Hardy
2-3 Melons Cantaloupe, Honey Dew, Crimson Sweet Watermelon (H)
3 Pumpkins Flat Tan Pie, Mini (edible)
3 Sweet Potatoes

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