Folk music lovers took advantage of near-perfect late spring weather Sunday to visit Clarion Sage Market Garden and CSA near Waukee and listen to Paul Doffing, who was passing through on his 2015 Freedom from Fuel tour.
Clarion Sage is owned and operated by Cody Kilgore and Jenn Miller, who have been growing for several years, although this is their second year as a community-supported agriculture (CSA) producer.
“We work less than one acre of ground,” Miller said, “and feed 30 families within a five- to six-mile radius. There’s also 15 families on our waiting list, so we keep busy here.”
Kilgore said their crop techniques include “hard-dig beds, loose soil structure, natural composting and companion planting.”
While their produce is not “certified organic” in the strict sense of the terms, as used by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and its certifying agents, Clarion Sage’s “bio-intensive” production methods are the next best thing, according to Kilgore.
Miller said they have picked up production methods from around the world.
“We like to see how they do it in other countries,” she said, “where they treat limited resources as if they are really limited.”
About 25 visitors attended Doffing’s performance, which included a tour of Clarion Sage Market garden and a tasty meal. Doffing is on his second Freedom from Fuel tour. He and his partner, Jen Tillman, travel by bicycle and play small venues around the U.S.
“This is the perfect stage,” Doffing said of the shady yards at Clarion Sage. “Jenn and Cody share our values about food and about sustainability, and we have similar tastes in music, so it really makes for a perfect day.”