Exploring Volusia County from Farm to Farm!

Volusia County boasts a rich agricultural heritage that comes to life through its vibrant and diverse farms. Recently, I had the privilege of organizing a farm tour that opened my eyes to the fascinating world of agriculture in this charming county. Join me as I recount the highlights of this immersive experience and share the stories of the hardworking farmers who contribute to the region’s agriculture.

    1. Evans Fish Farm spanning 100 acres, stands as one of Florida’s most progressive aquaculture facilities. The tour provided valuable insights into the aquaculture industry, covering the history, mission, and fish cultivation methods. Participants explored breeding pools, the grow-out facility with ponds, tanks, and net pens, and gained knowledge about fish at different developmental stages. An exciting opportunity to purchase their exclusive Anastashia Gold Caviar added to the experience!
  1. H&H Greens specializes in growing a variety of greens and cut products for wholesale and retail. The tour showcased the interior of the business, with a demonstration of the intricate process of creating small bouquets. Despite weather constraints, guests had the chance to make and take home their own bouquet as a memorable keepsake of the day.
  2. Innovation Arabians is one of the largest horse farms in the county that boasts five barns, four riding arenas, and extensive riding space. Weather limitations confined the tour to the barns attached to the main arena, where owners passionately shared insights into their riding lessons, summer camps, and the new Farm School program. Attendees enjoyed interacting with animals brought into the arena, along with youth activities and a bounce house.
  3. Yaupon Brothers is known for promoting Yaupon Holly tea, an indigenous North American plant, and focus on cultivating, harvesting, and processing the plant for various tea products. Walking through the facilities, I gained an appreciation for using native plants right in our own backyard for a natural caffeine fix!  Tour participants had the chance to try several types of yaupon tea.  Yaupon Brothers have farmers throughout North Florida that are growing these plants for tea.
  4. Benedict Farms was built on a family tradition back in 1934.  The farm has expanded to growing delicious seasonal vegetables to be enjoyed by their local community.  On this stop of the tour people had the chance to buy local canned and pickled vegetables and fresh eggs. The family did a tour of their fields, IPM and spray techniques unique to their farm, and talked about the new renovations for their store.
  5. Persimmon Hollow is a local craft brewery with its main site situated in the historic downtown area of DeLand.  They offered a guided tour about the beer-making process, the history of the brewery, and people got a behind-the-scenes glimpses of brewing facilities and the upcoming expansion plans.  It emphasized how UF is working on hop cultivars to grow in Florida.  Attendees had the chance to do a tasting session and purchase beer after the tour.

The Volusia County farm tour was an eye-opening journey through diverse agricultural landscapes. Each farm, whether producing organic vegetables, ferns, tea, horses, fish, or beer, shared a unique story of hard work, dedication, and a profound connection to the land. In an era where understanding the origins of our food is crucial, Volusia County’s farms not only provide sustenance but also contribute significantly to the cultural and economic fabric of the community. I left the tour with a newfound appreciation for the resilience and passion of the farmers cultivating the county’s bountiful harvest.

Despite the rainy weather, this year’s tour was a success, with 155 people exploring at least one of the six featured spots. We are grateful for the opportunity to share these exceptional farms with our community.  For more information on 2024 Farm Tour please call the Volusia County Extension Office.



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Posted: January 12, 2024

Category: Agriculture, Fruits & Vegetables, UF/IFAS Extension
Tags: Exploring Volusia, Farm Tour, Volusia County, Volusia County Extension, Volusia Farm Tour

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