Spring Gardening to Market Opening

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BY: Pat Walker, Franklin County Farmers Market Manager

Flipping the calendar over from February to March and springing the clocks forward puts a gardening soul in a “Let’s get planting mode.” True to March, the wind blows in all directions along with temperatures from freezing to shirt sleeve weather. The assorted colors of Spring flowers dotting the yards and sidewalks are a sure sign Spring is here. The farmers are keeping a close eye on the fields of strawberry plants as they bring forth their white blooms, each one with a promise of becoming a red juicy berry.

image of dozens ofboxes of fresh red strawberries

Each year these delicious berries are found at The Franklin County Farmers Market. The annual Strawberry Festival kicks off the full season of our market. This event includes strawberry recipe judging, categories starting from the very young to the very young at heart. Some love dressing up in strawberry attire. This is a fun day for all.

We have cooking demos during the busy growing season and each time is filled with community fellowship. The veggies are donated by our farmers fresh from the garden. Pickles and radishes are available for sampling made by local vendors. There’s nothing like watching a talented cook chop and stir up something good to eat especially when it’s fresh produce locally grown. Recipes are shared as are ways to prepare a healthy dish on a budget. All love watching the kids shop for their favorite fruit or veggie. They walk around with their shopping bags which a lot of the time are as big as they are. When they spot their favorite jam or jelly it’s a joy to see those big eyes looking into the side of the jars.

We had a good Winter this year and are looking forward to a great Spring. Plants are available for setting out to get a bit of a jump start on the growing season. Native American crafts and walking canes are hand made by a very talented vendor also the conversation that goes along with each piece is priceless. Crafts, from picture frames to beautiful wreaths and more, make for a great selection of gift ideas. Some of the best goat’s milk soaps around are made by our local vendors. Soon the walkway of The Franklin County Farmers Market will be filled with all sorts of color from the flowers grown by a local gardener. Fresh breads and pies will be on the vendor’s tables very soon and they are as delicious as they look.

Spring is a time for setting out plants and gathering around under the market shelter with the new harvest. We all look forward to seeing each and every one this season and thanks for supporting your local farmers.

For Farmer’s Market information contact Pat Walker, 919-496-3344.