To celebrate Australian Organic Awareness Month, we spoke to Mullumbimby born farmer Glenyce Creighton, who has been on her property in Myocum for 40 years. Originally a piggery, Glenyce and her family began trialling many varied vegetables, becoming certified organic over 10 years ago.
‘I have been at Mullumbimby and New Brighton Farmers Markets since the very, very beginning. I love my customers; they are lovely people to mix with, I like to get to know them and they always come back to have a conversation’.
You won’t find a lot of any one type of produce at her stall, but what you will find is a huge mixture of what she has in season. Right now you will find sunflowers, heliconia, gladioli and liliums; sold as flowers and plants. You will also find potatoes, eggs, lettuce, tomato, pumpkin, mustard, spinach, silverbeet and parsley.
Glenyce only sells what’s she’s just picked or harvested. To ask her recommendation at the moment she would suggest new, fresh, in-season mulberries or to grab some lemon and oranges which are just about to finish up locally. Nothing Glenyce sells has ever been refrigerated or stored in a cool room, it is straight from the ground on her farm to the farmers markets, which is the only place she sells her produce.
‘Originally when we first started at the markets we were selling vegetables and I was looking for other produce to add to the stall, which is when I brought in flowers and flower arrangements, they add variety and of course make the stall look lovely’.
With variety comes….well varieties. Have you ever wondered why cucumbers today taste nothing like they did when you were growing up? Glenyce stocks many older seed, hard to find vegetables, which are totally different from those you will find in the supermarket today. She has horn melons, chokoes and old style large white skin cucumbers just like your grandmother put on your sandwiches. These are the kind of vegetables big commercial growers and supermarkets would never bother with.
‘Many of these have long gone out of fashion but a lot of people still appreciate being able to buy them at my stall.’
You’ll even find farm-grown body products. One of her favourite discoveries has been the loofah plant, the large zucchini shaped fruit that grows on vines, which when dried it can be used as a natural sponge and exfoliator.
It is always a treat to visit Glenyce’s stall to discover what she has in stock. Regular marketgoers know to be on the look out to see if she has her homemade pavlova!