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Five Sustainable/Organic/Natural Farms and Ranches to Add Flavor to Your Meals in Nevada

1. Andelin Family Farm. Located in Spanish Springs in northwestern Nevada, just north of Sparks, and about 10 miles northeast of Reno, the farm offers fun and education activities in spring and fall, as well as summer farm camp, educational field trips, weddings, and online produce sales. The big spring event is the Baby Animal Days (showcasing the many animal babies on the farm, including chicks, ducklings, bunnies, piglets, lambs, goat kids, and calves) and the fall events include a pumpkin patch (with u-pick options) and two corn mazes. Products for sale on the farm include: farm-raised pork and beef (including steaks, chops, bacon, roasts), seasonal produce (such as kale, peppers, spinach, tomatoes, carrots, pumpkins, sweet corn, and squashes), eggs, honey, jams and jellies, handmade crafts, and baked goods. Located on Pyramid Highway Spanish Springs, about a half mile past the Spanish Springs Library. Learn more: Andelin Family Farm.

2. Alpine Farms. Located in Gardnerville, in western Nevada, at the base of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, just south east of Lake Tahoe, and about 50 miles south of Reno, this family-run 40-acre farm follows organic practices (including never using pesticides or crop weed killers; using kelp and bio-char as fertilizers), and has been in business for more than two decades. The farm offers a bit of everything, including pine trees for landscaping (Austrian Pine, Jeffrey Pine, Ponderosa Pine, Colorado Spruce, and Giant Cedar Redwoods), feed (including clover and alfalfa), grains, and a selection of meats (starting with Angus beef, and soon adding pigs, sheep, and goats). In the future, they will also be selling herbs, vegetables, and fruits. The farm is located on Fredericksburg Road, and they welcome visitors. Learn more: Alpine Farms.

3. Agape Organics AKA The Apple Basket. Located in New Washoe City, in the Washoe Valley on the division between the Sierra Nevada mountains and the Great Basin, in central-western Nevada, just north of Carson City and about 25 miles south of Reno, this family-run and organic 5-acre orchard is run by the Pennington family, offering pick-your-own apples on Saturdays and Sundays (and by appointment) from mid-September through October. No oils, chemicals, or insecticides are used. Apple varieties grown include Braeburn, Cameo, Gala, and Golden Delicious. The orchard also includes a gift shop, children's play area, and picnic area. In the summers, they also grow vegetables and other fruits (including tomatoes, green beans, peppers, kale, corn, spinach, onions, peas, zucchini, melons, strawberries, herbs, and more). Find them on Franktown Road. Learn more: Agape Organics.

4. Holley Family Farms. Located in Dayton Valley, in west-central Nevada, about 25 miles east of Lake Tahoe and 45 miles southeast of Reno, is a multi-generational, sustainable, USDA Organic farm that provides customers with fresh vegetables, grass-fed AND grass-finished beef and lamb (raised on organic fields), GMO-free farrow-to-finish pork, and free range eggs from grass-pastured and organically-fed chickens. Owned and operated since 1970, and now in the third and fourth generation of farmers, they believe in being the best stewards of the land and farm, employing ecologically sound farming practices, including composting, rotational planting and grazing, cover crops, and humane treatment of animals. Their mission includes: "We strive to maintain ecological, economical, and generational sustainability that gives honor to God..." Most products are available at the Great Basin Community Food Co-op in Reno; they also participate in the Carson City Farmers Market, and some products are available on the farm -- by appointment only. Located on Quilici Road. Learn more: Holley Family Farms.

5. Lattin Farms. Located in Fallon, in northwestern Nevada, about 60 miles east of Reno, this 400-acre family-run farm (five generations strong) grows a wide range of organic produce, selling it at their produce stand (Monday through Saturday), as well as featuring a Corn Maze and Fall Festival every Saturday in October. Besides the farm's store, their produces are also sold through several farmers markets and some specialty stores, as well as through the Great Basin Basket Community Supported Agriculture (CSA). Visitors to the farm will find baked goods, jams, canned items, and lots of seasonal produce (including artichoke, asparagus, beets, carrots, corn, cucumber, garlic, beans, kale, onions, peppers, pumpkins, squashes, tomatoes, melons, raspberries, and more... including their famous Hearts of Gold Cantaloupes). The farm also offers extensive education opportunities for school children -- and visitors -- by appointment. Learn more: Lattin Farms.

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