November 29, 2018

Palmetto Bluff’s Farm Vision

Aspirationally, the plan for Palmetto Bluff always included a farm. We knew that as this place evolved, we would set aside land for farmed agricultural plots to enhance the visual landscape and the community’s sustainability. Now, a guiding principle defined more than a decade ago is bearing fruit (sorry, I couldn’t help it) and vegetables.

“Food and foodways are at the core of any culture,” says David O’Donoghue, Palmetto Bluff president. “For Palmetto Bluff to be an ambassador of the foodways of the Lowcountry, it requires that we look not just at presenting food (via our restaurants), but at food production. We want to understand how food is tied to this place, so we must ask what fits the geography, environment, and history of the place.”

Given the resonance of the story of food and where it comes from, both in terms of geography and history, we saw an opportunity to recapture farming practices. This does not mean that we are focused on recreating an overly romanticized nostalgic vision of the past. It means we are seeking authenticity, and authenticity means it is something real and viable in today’s world. Authenticity means that when you plant your first crop in the fall and it snows in January, you add your newfound knowledge of potential weather patterns to the story and you pick up where Mother Nature left you.

Today, we have a small but productive working farm. In 2019, we will add a full-time farmer who will look to understand and document the traditional means of farming the most viable and best-tasting varieties of food that are indigenous to the Lowcountry environment.

Focusing on outreach and education, the farm will work with the Conservancy. This will start with the members and guests of Palmetto Bluff and ultimately reach well beyond our gates. We endeavor to be a thought leader and model that helps promote the long-term sustainability of natural, local food production. This will include finding additional partner organizations to carry our learnings to a broader audience, bringing promising students to our farm, and making it possible for interested novices to learn how to both grow and prepare food in a fashion consistent with our best practices.

Additionally, as a promoter of the foodways of the Lowcountry, the Palmetto Bluff farm should be a center for excellence and documentation and celebration of other food producers in the region. We will seek out farmers, hunters, fishermen, and other craftspeople who share our vision and goals and help capture and promote their efforts as a part of our broader cultural mission.

We will supply the dining outlets on property to allow people to taste the food that is produced locally and authentically. We will celebrate great local cuisine and promote its visibility and success.

But, above all, our mission is simple: the food must taste good.



Spring 2018 Planting List

Produce:

Okra

Burgundy Okra

Black Crowder Peas

Pink-Eye peas

Purple Knuckle Peas

Sugar Peas

Hardee Peas

Texas Longhorn Peas

Louisiana Purple Pod Beans

Reverend Taylor Butterbeans

Loudermilk Butter Beans

Silver Queen Corn

ZucchIni

Charleston Gray Watermelon

Crimson Sweet Watermelon

Yellow Watermelon

Ichiban Eggplant

Purple Eggplant

Bradshaw Sweet Potatoes

Beauregard Sweet Potatoes

Cantaloupe

Cucumber

Blue Hubbard Squash

Straightneck Squash



Tomatoes:

San Marzano

Juliet Roma

Parks Whopper

Cherokee Carving

Yellow Pear Cherry

Bradley

Indigo Rose

Purple Dog Creek

Tennessee Britches

Depp’s Pink Firefly

Big Zebra

Lucky Cross

Isis Candy

Gold Medal

Big Rainbow

Matt’s Wild Cherry

Blue Ridge Mountain

indigo Blueberry

Black Icicle

Red Tommy Toe

Indian Stripe

Green Zebra

Sweet 100

Yellow Pear

Adelaide Festival

Wild Barred Boar



Peppers:

Friarielio di Napoli

FataliI

Yum Yum Orange

Yum Yum Red

Candy Cane Red

Cajun Beli

Poblano

Thai Hot

Sweet Hot

Ghost

Scotch Bonnet

Carolina Reaper

Odessa Market

Chinese Five Color

Shishito

Purple Jalapeno

Mexibell

Yellow Bell

Gypsey Sweet

Purple Beli

Garden Salsa

Combahee Red Devil

Orange Carrot



Written by Courtney Hampson
Food & Wine