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Brian Lapinski discusses the basics of building compost and why compost is important.

Down to Earth Farm, which Lapinski started with his wife, Kristin, in 2007, is a small, sustainable operation located on Jacksonville’s Westside. Their goal is to grow healthy, delicious vegetables in a manner that is gentle on our planet. This means using compost and Organic Materials Review Institute-listed products instead of chemical fertilizers to feed their plants, using organic potting soil, and fighting bugs and disease with responsible techniques such as crop rotation and regular scouting. They use no chemical pesticides or herbicides.

Lapinski had almost no background in farming when he started, but he read everything he could get his hands on and traveled the state—and the world—to learn how other farms run. Their two girls, ages 12 and 9, are only interested in the farm when strawberries are involved.

They sell a wide variety of vegetables and cut flowers at the Green Market in Neptune Beach and Riverside Arts Market. They also provide produce for their 30-member community-supported agriculture (CSA) organization.

The meeting opens with a social hour at 6 p.m. with refreshments, followed by a short business meeting and the presentation.

The Ixia Chapter of the Florida Native Plant Society partners with the Garden Club of Jacksonville to provide monthly programming for the members of both organizations and the general public.

Free for Garden Club members, Ixia Chapter members, and the public

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