LOCAL PRODUCER MARKETS: Producers in the region sell their fruits, vegetables and more in different markets

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Communities are often built around food, whether it’s around a table, roasting marshmallows around a campfire, making tamales with the family at Christmas or at local farmers’ markets.

“You start to develop a relationship with each other, and what’s really neat is that when you pack your bags and you don’t want to bring things home, you say, ‘Hey, you wanna trade. ? Said Dan Brannan, who has been selling produce grown on his family farm at the Belen Farmers Market for four years. “Because it’s a community, we just exchange. It’s good, it’s fun.

Makayla Grijalva | Photo News-Bulletin
Dan Brannan and his son, Mike, have been selling produce from their garden, Ravenshire, at the Belen Farmers Market for four years. Dan said the community surrounding the market is his favorite part.

Brannan owns Ravenshire LLC in Belen and sells his fruits and vegetables exclusively at the Belen Farmers Market, which is held every Friday during the summer. He said when his parents bought the property in the early 1950s, it was “nothing more than jack rabbits and a chamisa bush”.

“You could walk up to the mountains without seeing anyone,” Brannan said, adding that there were now houses around the property.

When Brannan was growing up on the farm, alfalfa was the only crop on the farm. True to the use of the land in the decades leading up to his garden, he and his family still lease 55 acres from local alfalfa growers.

Brannan is now focused on the part of farming he loves, growing several types of produce including chili, tomatoes, cantaloupe, kale and other staples using his “green thumb”. .

“Basically I put the seeds in the ground and I say ‘grow up or die, I don’t care. It’s your problem, ”he laughed. “They are generally scared and they are growing up. “

He added that copious amounts of water are the secret to a good harvest in the New Mexico desert.

The Bosque Farms Farmers’ Market is open every Saturday morning from June to October. Several local gardeners, like Francisca Ranger, brave the New Mexico sun and set up shop under the shaded area of ​​poplars where the market is located.

Ranger and her husband have lived at Bosque Farms for 25 years and have been selling their produce at the market for about five years.

Makayla Grijalva | Photo News-Bulletin
Fransisca Ranger shows off her fresh chamomile and radishes at the Bosque Farms Growers Market.

Although she doesn’t feel comfortable speaking English, Ranger said her years working at a local hospital taught her to understand it and she enjoyed talking with people at the market week after week. (His interview with the Newsletter has been translated from Spanish.)

“It’s nice to communicate with people (at the farmer’s market),” she said. “This is my favorite part; I love her so much.”

When she started gardening, Ranger gave all of her excess produce to friends and family. It was only more recently that she discovered the market and was welcomed into this community.

In the first few months of the market, which usually opens in late spring, most vendors have yet to harvest any produce and are relying on selling their surplus plants, but Ranger said his secret to a bigger harvest. early was to use planters.

Local markets: days and times

• Belen farmer’s market

The Belen Farmers Market will be open seasonally from 4 pm to 7 pm every Friday through Friday October 29 at Anna Becker Park, 315 N. Fourth St. Belen.

• Bosque Farms farmers market

The Bosque Farms Farmers’ Market is open seasonally from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, at 1090 N. Bosque Loop, and will be open every Saturday until the last Saturday in October. To sell at the market, call 307-1891 or email [email protected]

• Los Lunas Farmer’s Market

Los Lunas Farmer’s Market is open seasonally from 4pm to 7pm on Tuesdays at the intersection of NM 6 and NM 47, Valencia Y. The market will be open every Tuesday until the end of October.

• Tomé farmer’s market

The Tomé Farmer’s Market will open for the season from 3pm to 7pm, Thursday July 15, at 2933 NM 47. The market will be open every Thursday until at least the end of September, possibly longer depending on product availability.

In addition to the squash and onions as well as the tomatoes, okra and chili that she plans to sell later in the season, Ranger has an item that no other vendor in the market has: fresh chamomile.

“A lot of people don’t believe these weeds are medicine, but they’re really great,” Ranger said, adding that chamomile had several medicinal benefits including upset stomach, sleep and constipation.

The wild plant just grows in her garden, with the wind planting the new crop, so she doesn’t even need to worry about their maintenance. She sells a bunch of chamomiles for a dollar.

Los Lunas Farmer’s Market is located near the intersection of NM 47 and NM 6 every Tuesday afternoon during the summer. Jack Barkeneyer has been selling his fruit and vegetables from Bar Star Family Farms since the inception of the market.

“As long as Los Lunas has had a deal, we’re here,” Barkeneyer said.

Makayla Grijalva | Photo News-Bulletin
A visitor to the Los Lunas Farmers Market considers purchasing produce from one of the vendors. During the first weeks of the markets, most sell only plants, harvesting the most produce from mid-July to the end.

Although he started selling in Albuquerque in the early 1980s, Barkeneyer moved his operation to Tomé in 1988.

“My grandfather always gardened, so I learned to do a lot of things with him,” said Barkeneyer. “It’s still a lot of trial and error – every year it’s a little different.”

As his grandfather taught him, he also passed on his trade to his grandchildren, aged 8, 10 and 12, who “have been gardening since they learned to walk”.

They operate their own garden under the aegis of Bar Star in Socorro.

Barkenyer said he reminds people wishing to buy fresh fruits and vegetables in local markets to be patient as most vendors do not harvest enough crops to sell until mid-July.

Those who receive the state’s EBT to buy food can also use the funds to buy fresh produce at farmers’ markets using the state’s Double Food Dollars program.



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