Our Story

In the spring of 2006 we found property that was a prime development opportunity and was being looked at for such purposes. We were able to purchase this site, which was 7.5 acres with three houses, not in order to turn it into a subdivision, but rather a small urban farm that could service downtown Asheville. Keep in mind that this was at the peak of the Asheville real estate frenzy and prices had not yet begun to fall. However, we felt that it would be tragic to turn this once-prosperous farm into yet one more subdivision. 

Several years ago we began to notice a trend in development. In fact, it goes back much farther than that. The trend is consistently away from agriculture near urban centers. This has been both an economic trend as well as a societal one. Developers and speculators have been able to make a lot of money building condos or subdivisions on once-flourishing family farms. Most farmers sadly bid farewell to their legacies, but welcomed the financial relief as they struggled to make ends meet in an economy where food producers are hardly cherished. Cheap energy has made it easy to transport mass volumes of food from thousands of miles away, grown on ever-increasing corporate farms that have no connection to the people or places that will be the end users of their produce. Because of these issues we felt compelled to pay a little more in order to reclaim something that had once been a local farm and restore it to its original use.

During the 2008 growing season at Gladheart Farms we began the large task bringing our vision into reality. We cleared two acres of land from trees, underbrush, and invasive species, old fences and large rocks. We purchased and erected a 24x48 greenhouse and equipped it with overhead irrigation, timers, liquid fertilizer injector, wood and forced air heat for propagation and winter production of greens. We also purchased and built three cold frames used for tomato production during the growing season to help prevent late blight and other diseases brought on by excessive moisture. We dug a well to use for agricultural irrigation, both for the greenhouse and drip irrigation in raised beds. We purchased basic necessary equipment to begin our farm production.