Thursday, January 11, 2018

Fruit Tree Pruning Class

Learn to Properly Prune Your Fruit Trees!

This half-day workshop will cover the basic principles of pruning your fruit trees, fruit tree anatomy, timing of pruning events, pruning for consistent fruit production and different tree shaping techniques.

Pruning in the apple orchard.
Join and share the facebook event!

We will begin the workshop with classroom style instruction and then we will be going outdoors to practice pruning. You are invited to bring your own pruning tools if you have them, otherwise we will have tools available for you to try. Please be dressed appropriately for the outdoor session of this class (second half). 

***Please bring your own lunch to the workshop.

What: Fruit Tree Pruning Workshop
When: March 3, 2018
Time: 9:00am-1:00pm
Where: New Ulm Public Library, 17 North Broadway, New Ulm, MN
Cost: $25/ Participant
Other: The cost of the workshop must be paid in advance. Call 507-439-6541 or email info@alternativerootsfarm.com to reserve your spot. Please send check to Alternative Roots Farm, 11197 130th St., Madelia, MN 56062. Registrations must be paid by February 23, 2018

Monday, December 18, 2017

We Are Grateful


Sending Gratitude & Holiday Cheer Your Way!
Wishing you happiness, health, laughter and peace during the holidays.



It has been a wonderful year - thank you so much for your support this year and over the last 6 years!
There are big changes on the horizon that make us very excited for the season ahead. We look forward to serving you in the new year!

Locally Yours,
Brooke, John & Emily Knisley
(farm dogs Hazel & Odin, fam cat Loki and the chickens too)



Monday, November 27, 2017

A Trio of Parsnip Ideas

Need a little inspiration for your parsnips? Stuck in a rut with just plain roasting them? There are many ways to enjoy this sweet, nutty cousin to the carrot.

We looove them roasted, or slow cooked with a pork or venison roast! Here are a few ideas I found on the interwebs, if you have a great idea please share!

Parsnips, butternut squash and leeks.

Parsnip, Mushroom and Leek Gratin     from the Kitchn

Sweet Potato Parsnip Bisque     from Sweet Potato Soul

Roasted Tumeric Parsnip Fries     from Bucket List Tummy



Thursday, November 2, 2017

Deep Winter Greenhouse Kick Off!

Well our deep winter greenhouse (DWG) is up and growing! We had a fantastic turnout for our open house on October 29 and the first seeds were planted by DWG pioneer Carol Ford, Garden Goddess Greenhouse. Thank you so much to all our partners, supporters, contractors and members! This is thrilling and so important to our farm. We are full of gratitude.

Here is the open house and latest from the greenhouse in a photo update!

The greenhouse pre-landscaping around the exterior.


At the open house engineer Dan speaks about how the passive solar structure works. 



Here's a view of the air outtake at the front of the building, the circulation fan is in the middle, the intake (for hot air) is at the peak (black tiling).


We talk about how the DWG fits into our farm goals and what we plan to grow in it. Winter CSA here we come! Fresh greens during the winter - YuM!

Farmers John and Brooke.
Farmers John and Brooke, Greg from UMN RSDP.
Ribbon cutting time! Farmer John, bro-in-law Andy (construction helper, plus representing Carroll Distributing), Larry (construction helper supreme), farmer Brooke and CSA members Yvonne & Lee.

Thank you to the University of Minnesota Regional Sustainable Development Partnership for making this program possible and helping us move into the future of our farm!


Thank you to our CSA members who have supported us on our journey! We were thrilled to have members Yvonne & Lee sharing the excitement of the day and cutting the ribbon with us!

Brooke, Yvonne and Lee.
Time to talk about planting and sow the first seeds! DWG pioneer/veteran Carol Ford, Garden Goddess Greenhouse, talked about how she plants in her greenhouse, the soil mix she uses and a little bit about growing. Then she planted the first planter with arugula seed! Video on facebook.



Thanks to all who shopped our mini market, came to enjoy the festivities and learn and celebrate with us! The event was very energizing and exciting. Live music was enjoyed by all, courtesy of Dick Kimmel and Stacey Watje. Live entertainment provided by farm cat Loki.


The first planting of arugula is up and off the germination mats! Seeding will occur about every other day until the greenhouse is filled up. Right now there are baby greens and microgreens growing, as we finish setting up the growing space in the greenhouse.


Gutter planters and plastic trays on the germination mats. We are working on setting up the inside structures, farm dog Odin likes to help (in comfort, of course).


The back room will be for storage and soil mixing, etc.


Below you can see some of the gutter planters underneath the germination/planting table.


Thanks go out to event organizers:
UMN Regional Sustainable Development Partnership and the Sustainable Farming Association.

Shout out to our local contractors:
Cedar Hill Homes (Glenn Hauser, general construction); Darin Portner Trucking (excavation/grading work); Nosbush Glass Co. (plexiglass install); NU Current Electric; Pat Faerber Masonry (block work); Searles Well Drilling (water work, directional boring); Heiderscheidt Digging (tiling suppies for air circulation system); Carroll Distributing (construction supplies); Larry Knisley - what would we do without your construction help! Thank to Frandsen Bank for financing the project!


None of the big wigs came, but we got this nice letter from Senator Amy Klobuchar! :)



Cheers! We'll keep sending out updates on facebook and here, as we grow!

Where can you find us next?

Mankato Winter Farmers' Market
Saturday, November 11th 10:00-12:00am, at Drummers Garden Center

Monday, October 23, 2017

Market @ the Farm

Market @ the Farm ~ Wednesday, October 25th 4-7:00pm
Come out to the farm and shop our Fall Market!

Shop from farm fresh items, storage items for your pantry, canned goods and health and wellness items, as well as local honey.

What's @ the Farm?
Apple Butter • Applesauce • Greens

Garlic & Shallots  • Herbs - dried & fresh
Butternut and Acorn Winter Squash • Broccoli

Watermelon Radishes • Parsnips
Herbal wellness items • Eggs • Onions • And more! 

Plus: Moody Bees Farm Honey products!

Bring your reusable shopping bags!

A sampling of available items! Plus, fresh produce!

Directions to the Farm: 11197 130th St, Madelia, 56062
From New Ulm: go 12 miles South on Hwy 15, turn left on 130th St., go 1.5 miles down the gravel.
From Madelia: go 8 miles North on Hwy 15, turn right on 130th St., go 1.5 miles down the gravel.

Friday, October 6, 2017

Fall Shares Available!

Fall Shares & Market @ the Farm ~ October 25th 4-7:00pm

email: alternativerootsfarm@yahoo.om
Full $80  (8 available) ~ Mini $30 (only 1 left!)
Available first-come, first served.

Pick up will be at the farm from 4:00-7:00 pm, Wed., October 25th and will be market style. Bring your own containers.

Full Fall Shares: ~1lb garlic, 3-5lbs onions, 4lbs potatoes, shallots, tomato-basil soup, apple butter, butternut & acorn squash, greens, varied bulk quantities of roots (parsnips, carrots, beets), cabbage, leeks. $80

Mini Fall Share: garlic, onions, apple butter, squash, leeks, greens. $30



email: alternativerootsfarm@yahoo.om
Amounts are approximate, amounts & items may change, based on availability. 


An on-farm market will be available during this time also, for purchase of items ala carte.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

CSA Week 14

Week 14 boxes were delivered Wednesday, September 13. New for week 14 were acorn squash and baby leeks!



In the Box: baby leeks, German Red garlic, celery, summercrisp lettuce, 2lbs Kennebec potatoes, pint cherry/grape tomatoes, four Prairie Spy apples, red onions, Ronde de Nice summer squash OR zucchini, heirloom tomatoes, Thelma Sanders heirloom acorn squash, mix snap/wax beand, rosemary sprigs, pint ground cherries (half shares).