Nursery Tour 2014; Tangletown Farm

Our Nursery Tour on June 5th was delightful this year thanks to Jill.  We visited two farms.  We started our day at Tangletown Farm in Plato, MN.  This farm provides the plants for Tangletown Gardens and Wise Acre Eatery, both located off of Diamond Lake Rd & 35W in S. Minneapolis.  Our host/owner was Dean Engelmann.  He took a few hours of his morning showing us thru their greenhouses and explaining Tangletown’s philosophy of propagating and growing a diverse collection of plants, including the beloved heirlooms.  Dean explained something that I have definitely noticed going into nurseries since the economic decline; there is less selection of unique plants.  Many nurseries are going deep with the best sellers and forgoing offering their customers selection.  Not Tangletown Gardens.
Tangletown Farm also raises the meat that Wise Acre Eatery serves.  They have 100 head of Scottish Highland Cattle.  The cattle are grass fed, which creates meat high in Omega 3.  Tangletown choose this breed because it is the breed that the British Royal Family raises.  Dean said if its good enough for the Queen, it’s good enough for Tangletown.  They also want to practice breed conservation.  I loved the look of these cattle.  With their shaggy heads, they reminded me of teenage boys with their long shaggy mops of hair. 
Dean also told us that his Grandmother introduced her love of gardening to him.  At a young age, she had him weeding the garden.  He finished weeding a row of carrots and his Grandmother praised him for the good job he did.  Only later did he find out that he weeded out the carrots and left the weeds.  It makes me continue to realize what an impact we have on our grandchildren.  It’s imperative that we pass our love of gardening down to the next generation.  Not only do the kids love it, they become more apt to try the foods they’ve grown and they will grow up to be gardeners themselves.  Both my parents were raised on farms and they both still garden to this day.  I credit them for giving me the gift of the garden and want to “pay it forward”.
Check back soon for a post regarding Star Thrower Farms.  This was too good to put in one post.
Dean Engelmann of Tangletown Farm demonstrates the needle seeder.
Seed Germination Chamber
One of the several Tangletown Farm greenhouses,
Trays of seedlings – beautiful.
Zea Mays Indian Berries & Ornamental Millet Purple Majesty.  We’ll have to give these a try come fall.
The shaggy headed Scottish Highland Cattle and one pig.  Don’t they look like teenage boys?
A beautiful selection of salad greens.
Jill and one of the girls.
Dean and the fodder that Tangletown grows.  1 lb of seeds produces 7 lbs of fodder in 7 days.  Not only that, but the protein doubles and 96% of the nutrients are available to the animal.  In traditional grain, only 50% is available to the animal, according to Dean.  Tangletown harvest 2300 lbs per day.  That’s a lot of fodder.
Trays of sprouted fodder and seeds.