Community Supported Agriculture allows farmers to remain financially sustainable while connecting members to the bounty of seasonal, local food. Members buy a share of the year’s harvest at the beginning of the season and receive weekly boxes of in-season produce. Healcrest Farm is building upon the CSA model to offer herbal medicines and healing products on a monthly schedule. Our Community Supported Apothecary invites you to explore medicinal plants, learning as you heal. Register Here
How does it work?
CSA membership is a great way to build a home supply of herbal medicines, learn more about how to use local plants, and explore new ways of being in control of our own health.
Each month for six months you’ll receive organically grown herbs and artisanal herbal products. Our CSA gives you the opportunity to try medicinal natural healing products you’ve been curious about and gain knowledge as you learn how your body heals. You’ll be able to pick your share up each month, warming you through the winter, and meeting with the women who grow and make all the products.
What is in a share?
Each share supplies you with seasonally appropriate medicines and products. Some herbal preparations you can expect to receive this season from October to March are:
~ Herbal Honeys
~ Nourishing Tea Blends
~Infused Healing Oils
~ Elixirs: general well being & immune boosting
~ …And More
You will receive educational information every month about the plants included in your share products, and suggestions on how to use them.
When you purchase a share, it helps support the work we do revitalizing the land, growing and processing the herbs into useful natural medicines that nourish the body and enhance vitality. In return, you will receive a variety of herbs that support good health and the health of the environment, while also preserving the agricultural character of our wonderful community.
Join Up Here!
We’re excited to participate in Chicks in the Hood :: PGH Chicken Coop Tour 2014! WE’LL HAVE TEAPOPS! THIS SUNDAY SUZY’LL BE SLINGIN’ CICLES!!
Come by on Sunday and visit our feathered friends. Suzy is looking forward to showing you the coop, introducing you to the gals, and offer you TeaPop refreshment!
Tickets can be purchased the day of the tour at
- Commonplace Voluto www.commonplacecoffee.com at 5467 Penn Avenue in Friendship/Garfield;
- Tazza D’Oro www.tazzadoro.com at 1125 North Highland Avenue in Highland Park;
- Animal Nature www.animalnature.net at 7610 Forbes Avenue in Regent Square;
- Thompson 0.08 Acres at 1240 Resaca Place, Pittsburgh 15212;
- Choderwood at 7665 Lock Way West, Pittsburgh 15206, located at the Highland Park Dam at the intersection of Washington Boulevard and Allegheny River Boulevard.
By Michelle Soto
Meg and I thought we could use this rainy day to our advantage and show some photos of our muscle powered tools that we use to create the gardens. As we were planning and budgeting to create new gardens and revitalize more green spaces at Healcrest, we made a decision to not rent heavy gas powered machinery and to invest in quality earth moving tools that we can use for years to come.
We still use lawn mowers for grass cutting, but pretty much everything else up at the farm is a hand tool. This definitely increases the time and energy it takes to build a garden bed, but the finished products are high quality beds that will be around for years to come, completely free of knotweed roots, rocks, and anything else that might impede the growing process.
We’ve found that the beds that we built last year have needed a few wheelbarrows of compost of them and some leaf mulch in the aisles, but are free of invasive weeds. The hard pan clay that is just right under our top soil was turned with compost last year and has matured into a dark rich layer of soil, perfect for growing.
Planting into these beds will continue for a few more weeks! Official volunteer days are on Sundays from 11-4. We won’t make you jump on a broad fork for you can help some baby seedlings find a good home!
Michelle loves to use the little digging fork to turn earth
Meg attacks knotweed, clearing a new path through the woods
Michelle jumps on the broad fork, using all her body weight!
Meg is shifting soil with the brand new shifter that Suzy built or the farm
at Healcrest Urban Farm
Thursday, May 29 from 6-8 pm
We’re going to learn about recognizing the six tissue states in the body and the corresponding categories of herbs. I’m pulling knowledge from Ayurvedic medicine as well as Southern US Folk Herbalism. Hopefully you’ll leave knowing more about specific indications and what herbs will work well for your constitution and body type.
We’ll spend the first hour tasting plants from the garden and recognizing the movement within our bodies and the second talking about the different energetic systems across the world.
By Michelle Soto
This past week my family came into town ready to work on the farm! Many of my memories of childhood involve helping my dad in the yard and in the garden. Every spring we’d get a load of wood mulch delivered to the house and I would use my child sized shovel and wheelbarrow to mulch the rose bushes and the edges of garden beds. I loved the smell of the mulch. It smelled woody and alive and signaled that spring was here. My dad’s biggest hobby was working in the yard, he’d come home every day after work, take a power nap, change into work clothes and spend the rest of the afternoon outside. He’s the type of guy who only has ONE kind of grass in his yard, and absolutely no weeds. Anywhere.
It was reminiscent of these afternoons to spend some days with him at Healcrest. His assignment: tree stump removal. And not just any tree stump. A 50 year old black locust (he counted those rings during a break one day) which was in the middle of our newest garden. While my dad worked on the stump, my mom and aunt weeded our garlic patch, which had mulched itself with garlic mustard plants. They caught them all before they went to flower, and the garlic patch is vibrant and sending up what soon will be delicious garlic scapes.
Other areas of the garden are quickly growing as the days and nights are warming up. The mints: lemon balm, peppermint, horehound, catnip, catmint, and chocolate mint are providing us with new herbs to harvest every week. About half of our seedlings are moved into the greenhouse and awaiting transplant. And of course, the lovely wild cherry trees are going to burst into bloom any day this week.
Till next time,
Michelle and the Farm Team
We look forward to seeing you this weekend at The Waterfront! FRIDAY & SATURDAY
Join US for a Wonderful Local Artisan Shopping Experience
The 6th Annual Holiday Artisan I Made It Nomadic Marketplace
DEC 8th – Sterling Yoga Artists Market
WE’RE ACCEPTED! Idea Foundry Intersector Program
We’re so excited and grateful to be accepted into the Idea Foundry Intersector Program. Our incubation begins tomorrow and we are eager to dive in and refine the Healcrest Urban Farm vision and plan. Read more about the new exciting programs of Idea Foundry and how social entrepreneurs are committing to the triple bottom line; people, planet, profits. We are so thankful to begin this process.
Thank You for Supporting Healcrest Urban Farm
This summer has been very busy with over 40 events and over 45 different flavors of TeaPops! We have loved our diverse list of markets and farm events this season and it makes us excited for next year.
With Autumn fast approaching we are in harvest mode at the farm, as well as shifting from our cold sweet treat to our delicious herbal tea blends for market. You can find both at PGH area markets and come visit our booth at the Mother Earth News Fair Sept 20th-22nd.
Visit us this weekend at the Garfield Night Market Friday, Saturday join us at the farm for a Late Summer Soiree, then Sunday visit us at Union Station for Station to Station.
- SEP 1st – @ Weather Permitting, Shadyside Nursery
- SEP 6th – First Friday Garfield Night Market, Pittsburgh, PA
- SEP 7th – Late Summer Soiree: A Healcrest Hafla with Amun Raqs, food trucks, and dance
- SEP 8th – Station to Station at Union Station, Dwtn
- SEP 13th – PGH Abides at Bayardstown, Strip District
- SEP 15th – SUN 1:30-3:30 – Fermentation Basics with Natalya
- SEP 15th – 5pm-9pm – TBA @ Weather Permitting, Shadyside Nursery
- SEP 20th-22nd – @Mother Earth News Fair, Seven Springs, PA
- SEP 29th, 11am-4pm – @Green Innovation Festival, Hartwood Acres, PA
- OCT 12th – Harvest Dinner and Garden Party