About Dave & Amy
Dave Hartshorn has been connected to the land all of his life. When he was young, he worked on his family’s dairy farm and in the maple syrup business. One day many years ago, Dave’s parents got a call from the local sheriff. He said he didn’t know how to tell them this, but one of their tractors was moving across the field all by itself. Turns out it was 6 year old Dave driving it. And, yes he was allowed to drive it. Vermont farm boys operate heavy equipment at a young age…
How Dave started growing veggies and fruits is almost a fairy tale story. In his twenties, he threw a handful of pumpkin seeds into the compost pile at the farm as he headed to feed the cows. In the Fall, after a frost and all of the weeds were dead on the pile, he noticed some beautiful large orange pumpkins. He picked them and put them on the front porch of his family’s farm house. People saw the pumpkins, wanted them, and knocked on the door to find out if they could buy them. A business opportunity was born. Dave financed his college education growing and selling pumpkins.
Dave operates the farm with the philosophy of sustainability and healthy stewardship–putting back what he takes out of the land. That’s why he chose to go the extra step and become certified organic over 15 years ago.
In addition to distributing his food to a number of schools and institutions through the Farm to Table Network, Dave has made connections with local area chefs. He provides food to a number of local restaurants, such as:
Round Barn Farm
The Big Picture Theater & Restaurant
Timbers at Sugarbush
The Common Man
The Pitcher Inn
The Wilder Farm B & B
The Waitsfield Inn
Center for Whole Communities
Waitsfield Village Grocery
Sweet Pea Natural Food Store
Dave is an owner/partner of the year round, hydroponic greenhouse, Green Mountain Harvest Hydroponic, where he grows lettuces and basil free of GMO’s and toxic synthetic chemicals.
I’m Amy Todisco, Dave’s life partner, and the creator and writer of this blog. Helping Dave build and market the farm is one of the hats that I wear.
Mainly I’m a nationally recognized green living expert and life coach, and the Creator/Director of the Food, Healing and Wellness Retreat programs.
I believe that we humans are at a crossroads. We can cling to the old ways of living together on this planet which have created wars, out of control disease, destruction of our environment, and a lot of broken people who do desperate things, or we can become more conscious about how we live and interact. Who among us doesn’t want to be happier, healthier and more joyful people living in peace and harmony with all living creatures?
The Food, Healing & Wellness Retreats are a culmination of a lifetime of personal growth/spirituality, holistic health and green living experiences distilled into a 5 day/night experiential program. Dave is teaching the gardening and hydroponic growing portion of the programs.
You will not come out thinking the same way as you did going in. You WILL come out refreshed, renewed, empowered, deeply connected to who you are at a soul level with a clearer idea of your life purpose, grounded and more connected to the Earth and it’s creatures with new friends.
Eat nourishing organic whole foods; try juicing and a raw food dinner; spend a day with horses learning about yourself and how you show up in the world; get a taste of different wellness tools, such as herbs, aromatherapy, acupunture, sound healing, massage, and more. Do a daily mindfulness practice-choosing how to respond to life’s ups and downs instead of react–with more peace and balance. Plant, weed, and harvest and learn what it takes to grow organic food with an organic farmer. Go for a hike, swim in the river, have a farm pizza dinner. And, so much more.
Only 6 women per program. First one starts on Summer Solstice, June 21.Sign up now.
A little background about Amy…
It was 1992, and I was a few months pregnant. I already had a passion for healthy living that started at a young age. I loved the products in health food stores and worked in a couple in my teens and early twenties. The smell and look of the food, the books, the vitamins, and the information mesmerized me.
So when I became pregnant, like many new mothers-to-be, I wanted to do everything I could to make sure my child would be healthy too. Prenatal vitamins? Check. Organic whole foods? Check. Exercise? Rest? Check, check. Toxic chemicals in my shampoo? What the heck?
I had stumbled upon a book (now sadly no longer in print) called the Nontoxic Baby. Much to my surprise I learned that there were toxic synthetic chemicals in many household products. What was worse, many of the so called “natural” brands at the health food stores had the same toxic chemicals in them. What was a conscientious mother-to-be to do?
Most of us don’t have the time or energy to research and test products for ourselves. Since that pregnancy, I’ve become a “green” fairy godmother, reading the labels, researching the ingredients and the companies that make the products and sharing the findings. What grew out of a desire to find the safest, most environmentally friendly products for my child and me blossomed into a full-blown passion.
I began my work as a community activist in MA in 1995, where I created community educational events, founded and co-founded several nonprofits; served as Executive Director for two nonprofits; provided presentations on household toxics; consulted with private and public schools; churches, community groups, local boards of health, and the MA State Department of Public Health; written on the topic of household toxics for newspapers, newsletters and websites; and been interviewed on TV, radio and cable TV.
It has also led me to my life partner who is an organic farmer, and allowed me to become a voice for those who are looking for green living advice, inspiration and information. My main passion right now is bringing people on to the farm with the new farming and healing programs. I also grow organic cut flowers for a business. I’ve always loved growing food and flowers organically. Life is good.