Fortunate Farm’s Gowan Batist grew up farming, finding her passion early in life. The farm is the expression of that passion, for sustainable farming and stewardship of the land and the environment. On the farm’s 40 acres, Gowan and her family grow a wide variety of heirloom vegetables from artichokes to zucchini, along with berries and flowers, with a focus on sustainable farming, rotating crops, and tending the soil as well as the crops with as light a carbon footprint as possible.
Local favorite North Coast Brewing has partnered with Fortunate Farm to help enrich the farm’s soil with hops and grains left over from the brewing process that would otherwise go to waste. Gowan takes these unwanted leftovers and brews them into a rich compost to improve the soil. The sugars in the brewery’s spent grains help the soil to retain water, an important factor in an area prone to drought. Flocks of sheep graze the land, naturally adding their manure to further enrich the soil. The sheep’s wool is sold to local fiber artists.
The farm is committed to nourishing its small community and to giving back. Most of their produce is sold within the community, from their farm stand and in the local Farmers’ Market, held each Wednesday in Fort Bragg and Friday in Mendocino. Some of the produce is donated to the Food Bank and other local resources, such as Project Sanctuary. During the recent wildfires in inland Mendocino County, Fortunate Farm opened their barn, land, and doors to their neighbors who had lost their homes.
In the summer, there are yoga classes in the beautiful garden on Saturday mornings, for a suggested donation of $10, and in the fall, bring the kids to pick your own heirloom pumpkin from the most sincere patch on the Mendocino Coast.
Fortunate Farm is located at 15401 N Hwy 1 in Caspar, just south of Fort Bragg and across the road from Jug Handle State Preserve. Weekly farm stand on Saturdays, from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Fortunate Farm also attends the weekly Farmers’ Market in Fort Bragg from 2:00 to 5:00 on Wednesdays. Phone (707) 962-4149 for more information.