HOW WE GOT STARTED My name is Vince Colandrea. My adventure into Organics started in the early 80's when I found myself laid up due to a serious surgery. I was bored out of my mind and a farming friend of mine invited me to a seminar. Beverly (my wife and my better half) and I, agreed to go. The seminar was all about chemicals and using chemicals for farming. I just kept thinking about how there must be a better way. Beverly said to me "Well, you better get studying". So that is what I did. I purchased any and every book I could find on organics and I read them all. In those days the literature was not near as plentiful as it is today. I decided to join the Youngstown Garden Club. I was the only person in the group that did things organically. It was through this group that I was introduced to Vince Camp who had a talk radio show out of Youngstown, Ohio. It started out on a once a month bases when I would join Vince on the show to answer caller questions about growing organically. Then it turned into two times a month. Then I was asked to do live remotes with Vince. We had a blast together. Lots of people would call in and I would not necessarily have the answer for them at that time but I would get their name and address and I would send them a response or go visit them after the show. It was a great learning experience for me. By 1985, I decided to start my own Chemical Free Lawn Spray Service. We never used chemicals, only natural products. I was able to produce and paten my own product that we would spray on lawns that would not only feed the grass but also enhance the soil. I gave Chem Lawn some real competition. I made it to the front page of the Tribune Chronicle on one particular Sunday issue; I was drinking the mix from the tank out of my hand. The business grew leaps and bounds but, both Bev and I wanted to do more farming than lawn care.
In 1992 Beverly and I bought the farm and we became Certified Organic that same year. We have always considered ourselves test farmers. We put into practice what we promote. At the end of the season in 2008 we dropped the certification due to financial costs but we never stopped our organic farming practices. For now we are considered Chemical Free, Naturally Grown Farmers. We do not use any GMO or GE genetically engineered seeds or products. Everything we promote or sell can be used in any certified organic operation.
We have found lots of useful farming strategies and some that we will never do again. We have experience implementing all kinds of different techniques for insect and pest control as well as disease control. We believe that God created Nature to take care of Nature. The key to succeeding organically is to keep the soil healthy and balanced properly with nutrients that will satisfy biological soil life that will help with good healthy plant growth.