Among people everywhere there is increasing concern about the quality and safety of our food as well as concern about harm to the environment from ill-conceived agricultural activity. Tilth's mission is to promote environmentally sound and sustainable agriculture. We are devoted to learning about and promoting ways in which to raise food, ornamentals, other farm crops and farm animals without damage to the environment. Our group, South Whidbey Tilth, is part of the Washington Tilth Association, which is composed of several regional chapters.
In The News ...
Tilth Farmers' Market Opens May 1
Sunday, May 1 is opening day for South Whidbey Tilth's Farmers' Market featuring local farm produce and plants, concessions and crafts. Singer/songwriter Audri Cooke opens with original songs, followed by with Island Strings performing as dancers weave festive ribbons around a May Pole at noon. There's lots of parking, clean restrooms, free WiFi and children's play areas. SNAP cards are welcome. In it's 45th season, the market is open every Sunday through October 16. More vendors are welcome, see details on the Market page.
Earth Day of Service in Tilth's Forest April 17
0h Spring, what a wonderful time of year. The days get longer, the weather warms up, and plants show off their beautiful flowers. This last bit is what makes spring a great time to identify and root-out unwanted plants. Removing noxious weeds before they set seed is crucial for their eradication. South Whidbey Tilth is offering an opportunity to continue the legacy of re-growing a healthy, diverse, native forest. On April 17th, South Whidbey Tilth is having a service day to clear the trails, lay down fresh chips, remove weeds, and explore its forest understory recovery project started in 2000. Join us as Cleveland Hall leads a tour to identify plants established since the start of the project. We’ve all seen black berry thickets here on south Whidbey, come see what could happen if native ground cover is allowed back into the forest. Come to South Whidbey Tilth’s Sustainability Campus, 2812 Thompson Road, Langley, right off SR 525, look for the scarecrow. April 17th from 1 p.m. until 3:30 p.m. Bring tools, work gloves, or just curiosity. Hot beverages, cool water, and soup will be provided.
Tilth is having a service day Sunday, April 17 to explore its forest understory recovery project and clear the trails of invasive plants and lay down fresh chips. Join us as Cleveland Hall leads a tour to identify the plants established since Tilth purchased the property in 2000. Come from 1 to 3:30 p.m. with tools, work gloves or just curiousity. Hot beverages and soup is available. The address is 2812 Thompson Road, Langley.
For more information about Earth and Ocaen Month activities, click on the flier to download a copy or visit the website of Whidbey Earth and Ocean month.
Council of Trustees 2016
Four trustees were elected to the Tilth's governing council on Saturday, January 23. Prescott was reelected as President. Pete Little was appointed two months ago and was confirmed by election. He serves as chair of membership, development and community relations. Judy Kaplan will chair the market committee and Fred Rouge is serving as Vice President. Continuing for the second year of their terms are Edward Hueneke, finance chair; Michael Seraphinoff, education chair; Dorcas Young, land stewardship chair. Position 7 still open and is a one-year term. The council needs a secretary. Please contact the Tilth President if you are interested.
WiFi Is at South Whidbey Tilth!
Only $160 More Funds Needed for Infrastructure
Help us keep the plant propagation and salvage facility infrastructure. We've raised $740 and the South Whidbey Garden Club is helping with $300. See the Garden page.
The waterline on the campus is drained to protect pipes from freezing weather. Water can be obtained from the exterior faucet on the pump house. One restroom is open. Please refill the water bucket for flushing from the trash can by the recycling station.
Tilth's Giving Tree Ornaments Sell Well
Thank you all, we raised $105 in donations and sold 19 out of 24. Thank you Dorcas Young for the seeds. Thank you Goosefoot and Island Athletic for hosting this event.
Puget Sound is in Trouble! By encouraging local, organic agriculture and making green choices in our daily lives we can create a Puget Sound that continues to be one of the most fertile places on earth. Find out what what you can do and get started. Learn more here and on the Puget Sound Starts Here web site.
Enjoy the Sustainability Campus
The South Whidbey Tilth 11-acre Sustainability Campus provides a unique, leisurely ambience and focus for learning. The campus is open for walking, and you can view our ongoing projects: demonstration field crops, community garden and orchard, forest trail and understory recovery project, native plant salvage beds operated by Native Plant Stewards, the highway vegetation management model, and bluebird nesting boxes established by Coupeville fifth-graders. Dog walkers, please usethe poop bags behind the restroom where the directional signs are. Use the trash can there.
South Whidbey Tilth has opportunities for you to help with classes, farmers' market, community gardens, facilities maintenance and improvements and forest restoration projects. Work parties are often held on Saturdays 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. See recent newsletters below for more information.
On August 27, 1977, more than 70 people gathered at Pragtree Farm near Arlington, WA, to develop strategies for the sustainable agriculture movement in the Pacific Northwest. Known as the "Regional Planning Meeting," the gathering established the framework for the Tilth Association.
Recently the Berry Center in Kentucky posted a video of Wendell Berry's July 1, 1974 speech in Spokane. Wendell's insights are as powerful today as they were forty years ago. The full transcript of his speech is available on the Tilth Producers website.
The meeting at Pragtree Farm laid the foundation for organizing local Tilth chapters. The next spring the first chapters were formed in Seattle and in Southwest Washington, followed by Willamette Valley Tilth and Rogue Tilth in Oregon. By the summer of 1982 there were 15 Tilth chapters in California, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington, with an estimated combined membership of 2,000. At the Regional Planning Meeting three years later Anthony Judge's ideas were incorporated into Tilth's strategy of organizing autonomous local chapters empowered to respond to the needs of their communities. Over the past three decades the Tilth movement has ebbed and flowed, with the central organization dissolving into statewide organizations in Oregon and Washington, and local chapters forming and fading away. Because of its decentralized, ecological strategy, however, Tilth has continued to adapt, survive, and thrive. Today Tilth is experiencing a resurgence parallel to the growth of the organic food and farming nationwide. The complete story by one of the founders, Mark Musick is on the Washington Tilth website select History.
All the Tilth organizations celebrated the 40th anniversary at the Tilth Producers Conference in November 2014. Mary Berry, Wendell’s daughter, was a keynote speaker.
See our chapters at:
Oregon Tilth www.tilth.org
Seattle Tilth www.seattletilth.org
Sno-Valley Tilth www.snovalleytilth.org
Tilth Producers of Washington www.tilthproducers.org
Vashon Island Growers Association www.vigavashon.org
The current newsletter issue is June-July 2015
Tilth Farmers’ Market
Follow links to issues from past years: