Thursday, June 12, 2014

Father and Son Develop Strategy

Drake and Eric at work developing campaign strategy

State Representative District #1.

Now that the papers are filed, "Farmers for Eric" is registered with the DCCA and the Campaign Spending Commission, a TIN (taxpayer identification number) is recorded with the IRS, a bank account is opened, we are ready to get to work.
Our theme is "Growing Community Together".   We want the campaign and the web site to be the example of our vision for District One.  Drake is my Campaign Manager and Web Master.  It is great for father and son to be working together, discussing what elements to include in the web site to best accomplish our goal.  We agree that a map of District #1 is important.  We want a place where leaders and those involved in building and growing our community can share their vision for our District.  We want an interactive site, one where folks come to be connected.  To that end, we want to have a place where farmers can post what they grow, how they farm, and how they sell their farm products.  We will have an events calendar.  We plan to host campaign events that plant gardens and share locally grown food.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Growing Community Together

Farmers For Eric
Growing Communities Together

Eric harvesting Taro grown using IMOs

Today I filled papers to run for District One State House Representative because I hope to make a positive transformation!

Look in your yard or your neighbors yard and the fruit tree you see was most likely grafted and produced by "Plant It Hawaii".  Back in the late 70's my sister and myself started that business with a vision to provide healthy fruit trees for all the people of Hawaii Island.  During the past thirty-five years over a quarter million fruit trees have been planted!  We searched the globe to bring the widest variety of the best tasting fruit to our island.  From Avocado to Zapote, the people of Hawaii Island now enjoy the delicious fruits from the best cultivars on the planet.

My life long passion for agriculture lead me to Korean Natural Farming.  In 2007 my son, Drake, and myself traveled to South Korea to spend a week with Dr. Park and Master Cho.  We toured farm after farm practicing KNF methods, using indigenous micro organisms (IMOs) to grow vegetables, fruits and raise animals.  Natural and healthy inputs are used to produce plants and animals that taste delicious and are super healthy.  Upon our return I set out to adapt the Korean farming systems to Hawaii Island.  We continued to learn and both earned certified status from Master Cho.  

1st Class of Cho Certified Korean Natural Farmers in Hawaii

We are blessed to live in District One, the bread basket of Hawaii Island, with arguably the best growing conditions on the planet.  Our family is working together to develop a model Korean Natural Farm on our property in Onomea.   In  August 2011 my wife, Jennifer, and myself, ate only what we grew ourselves from our own land for the whole month.  That was the inspiration for this blog.  Our meals and thoughts for each of those days is still posted by going to the older posts.  Leaving the convenience of the corner grocery store and depending on Nature and the land for our daily food taught me valuable lessons.   The spiritual connection to the Aina is profound and I remain grateful.

Eric and Jennifer with Eric’s co-workers in Keaau

I look forward to campaigning this Summer and Fall.  Why?  Because I’ll be doing what I love; teaching friends and neighbors how to grow healthy food naturally.  Why?  Because I’ll be meeting new people in our District, listening to their ideas, seeking to understand their concerns.  Why?  Because we’ll be working with each other to Grow our Community Together.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Spring 2014

This Spring has just blown by.  Jennifer and I spent January in New Zealand, a wonderful trip to a magical place.  We cruised 4,000 kilometers in our camper van, taking in the Southern Alps at Mt. Cook, hiking almost daily on long empty beaches or mountain trails, touring wine regions, just having a bucket list blast.

Eric & Jennifer picking up our camper-van in New Zealand

Still working my day job Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, which allows me 4 day weekends to pursue my gardening hobby.  Keeping up with our greenhouses, mostly for our greens and morning green drinks.  Have reconditioned the bottom gardens, where I have replanted sugar cane, kept the pineapples weeded, planted taro and sweet potato and green beans.

Ariel View of Farm with Hilo in upper left corner

I have recommitted to making all the Korean Natural Farming ingredients and have been spraying weekly.  This means Fermented Fruit Juice, Fermented Plant Juice, Fish Amino Acid, Lactic Acid Bacteria, Oriental Herbal Nutrient, Calcium from egg shells in korean rice wine vinegar.  This weekly spraying has made a significant difference on plant growth and health.

I have made IMO again.  Started with IMO one (bamboo leaf mold in rice), and threw it away three times until I nailed it.  Then IMO two mixing that rice mold with brown sugar.  Then mixed with the inputs mentioned above into mill run to make IMO three.  Added wood chips at this stage to get more fungus in the mix.  And finally mixed this with soil and more of the inputs to get IMO four, the finished product.
IMO #3 pile (my best ever)

I mixed dolomite (calcium and magnesium), bio-char into my new planting beds and topped with a thin layer of IMO four, then put grass clippings on top to protect the IMO four from the sun.  The grass clippings also keep the soil moisture in while preventing weeds from sprouting.

This past week I got 29 Buckeye chicks sent via US Postal Service from a special breeding operation in California specializing in heritage American breeds.  They only send straight run, so half will be male and half female.  These are dual purpose birds, meaning both meat and eggs.  So I'll keep the best roster and all the females, the other boys will consumed by us.

Buckeye Chicks in their new home