Oliview Farm is a small farm in Shasta County, California. Surrounded by mountains, we celebrate our four-season opportunity to grow food through action: our human-powered farm is home to a diversity of plants and animals that work together, with our help, to make this little plot of land - and those benefitting from it - healthier and stronger! We see humans as an integral part of the ecosystem. When using our knowledge and abilities for good, we are keystone species in the web of life. Below is the story of Oliview Farm.
We (Pedro and Elizabeth Betancourt) were working our way through life, but not finding that which spoke to us in terms of a lifetime of effort... or even 8 hours/day of effort! Narrowing down the options and opportunities, we moved to Shasta County in the hopes of finding a suitable piece of land for building a farm, and home, and a life... within six months, we found it! The land we found - our little plot on the corner of Scout and Telephone Gulch - was abandoned, and had not received attention for many, many years...
We found trash, rocks (the former owner was a rock collector on par with Lucy in the Long Trailer!), collectibles from a particular generation, and invasive exotic species across the entire property. The house on the property, into which we'd hoped to make our home, turned out to be one of the ten worst ever seen by our inspector. Undaunted, we set up house around the corner while we made our first mistakes in growing food.
Digging into hard clay, we first tried a rototiller. Finding the soil turned to dust, and bemoaning the destructive effects on the soil's life, we looked for another solution. Pedro volunteered at the Community Teaching Garden while Jim Collins was the garden manager, and learned about the French Intensive method. This method respects all components of the cycle of life while maintaining a high level of productivity and health.
We began serving the community with a test-year of our Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) in 2013. Our most wonderful "guinea pigs" that year helped us to identify quantities, delivery times, cost, and other things important to making the endeavor work.
Our goal is to serve approximately 100 shares in the Redding and Anderson communities and around Shasta County. Our olive oil is available to anyone interested, though we always reserve adequate quantities for our CSA customers. Eggs are delivered with CSA shares, but are available to non-members when there are adequate quantities and during the off-season.