Building Earth Farm Announces Summer CSA, Fruit Subscription

The folks at Building Earth Farm wish you all, “Happy Spring, local food-lovers!”

“We are already planting seeds for this year’s garden, the initial tilling has been wrought, the weed whacker had it’s first outing today, and the promise of summer’s sweetness is just beginning to swell. We need to know ASAP if you plan to join us for our 2017 summer/autumn food adventure.”

The quick details are:

2017 CSA price is $575/full Share and $290/half Share

The schedule for the CSA is:

June 17, 24
July 1, 8, 15, 22, 29
Aug 5, 12, 19, 26
Sept 2, 9, 16, 23, 30

Fruit Only Shares – $330 for 8 Weeks, provided every 2 weeks.

They will finalize the start date for Fruit Only once they’re sure how the season is moving but the tentative schedule for the fruit subscription is:

June 17
July 1, 15, 29
Aug 12, 26
Sept 19, 23

Signups are now open and are required by May 5th. Deposits for CSA and summer fruit share are due by May 15. First come, first served.

For those of you not sure what a CSA entails, or want more information about The Building Earth Farm’s CSA and Fruit Subscription, read on!Read More

An Apple Affair Makes Annual Appearance This Sunday, October 23

applefest3This Sunday the folks from the old Madrona Grove Fruit Truck and the Building Earth Farm will lay out a variety of apples to sample and buy, at their annual Apple Affair. This year’s Apple Affair is at Rignall Hall, 8131 Urquhart Road NW, Olympia.

“We’ll be bringing in apple varieties from a number of small family farms throughout the Okanogan. Join us for a free apple tasting and community apple potluck dessert table, Olympic Mountain Ice Cream, coffee, tea and hot apple cider. Bring the whole family!”

An Apple Affair
Sunday, October 23
12 noon to 4 PM
Rignall Hall

From their web page, we read, “The event starts at noon and goes until 4pm in a flurry of activity that leaves the sample plates mostly empty by around 3:30, so come early for the tasting and stay for some apple treats and rub elbows with your neighbors.”

In the past, the apple inventory has been limited and they suggest you bring along a box or other container to carry some apples home with you.


Building Earth Farm Announces “An Apple Affair” and Winter CSA Subscriptions

Building Earth Farm and the folks from the old Madrona Grove Summer Fruit Truck are announcing the Return of “An Apple Affair”. After a one-year hiatus, ‘An Apple Affair’ is back!

“For those of you who aren’t familiar with this event,” writes Jeannine Anderson, “‘An Apple Affair’ is a once-a-year opportunity to sample and purchase some of the finest apple varieties in Washington State.” Inspired by Feil Orchard in Wenatchee, An Apple Affair brings together varieties that have been grown for over a century by the Feil family, as well as some varieties grafted by the ever-curious Jack Feil. Feil is an octogenarian who continues to experiment with grafting unique varieties onto old orchard standards. Many of the apples featured will come from this farm, but there are several farms’ hard work represented at the Affair. Each apple variety and farm gets full credit on the table-talkers found next to each sample plate.

Apples specific for baking, drying, preserving, storing and eating out of hand are featured at this local food fair. If you are someone who thinks you wouldn’t know the difference between the sweets, tarts, juicy and old-fashioneds, there is a community apple potluck table where local residents prepare their favorite varieties in traditional and new recipes. Everyone is encouraged to taste for them selves why one type is suggested over another. Bring your own favorite recipe to share, or just come and sip coffee, tea or local cider while learning about the apples.

Apple inventory will be limited and you should bring a box or other container to carry some apples home with you. The Building Earth Farm will provide paper bags and pens for labeling so you don’t forget the names of your newfound favorites.

An Apple Affair
Sunday, October 19
12 noon to 4 PM
Rignal Hall
8131 Urquhart Rd NW, Olympia, WA 98502

For more detailed information visit or email Jeannine at

“Join us for An Apple Affair to taste old favorites, discover new ones, meet the neighbors and remind your self why autumn isn’t so bad after all.”

The Building Earth Farm is also announcing it’s 2014 – 2015 Winter Box Subscription.
According to Jeannine, “We will offer the highest quality, locally sourced, mostly organic, winter fruits and vegetables, along with a selection of specialty items such as cheese, eggs, baked goods and nuts.”
The winter box features produce such as winter squash, carrots, onions, potatoes and the like from local farms, including ours, and Washington-grown fruit such as apples and pears. “As long as the chickens cooperate, we’ll supply our own eggs and add other wonderful items to fill in the box from the Pacific Northwest such as cheese and nuts and baked goods from The Bread Peddler (classic French baked goods) and 8 Arms Bakery (traditional and gluten-free available), both in Olympia.  We will get citrus assistance from our friends in sunny California.” That’s right, this box of food is relatively local but we aren’t afraid to source lovely avocados, dates, tangelos and other tropicals to beat the rainy day blues.
Building Earth Farm’s Winter Food Box Subscription
Pick Up Time and Location:  10:00 – 12:00 at the Farm, 9140 Steamboat Island Rd. NW.
Pick Up Dates:  November 22, 2014, December 20, 2014, January 17, 2015, February 21, 2015, March 21, 2015.
How Much: $625 – Full Shares only (but you can share with friends and family).
Deposit Amount: $325.00 due by October 19th. $300 Balance due by January 17, 2015.
How many does this feed?  Just about anyone can use a monthly infusion of wonderful food that is designed to last. Apples, pears, nuts, roots, garlic, etc. can last at least several weeks. According to Jeannine, “We have busy, single folks as well as larger families who devour this box every month.”
“We only have space for 16 boxes so let us know as soon as possible if you are interested.” Contact Jen at
Happy Fall from the crew at Building Earth Farm!

Madrona Grove Fruit Stand Opens Tues, Jun 26

Residents on the Steamboat Peninsula have long supported the efforts of Michael Manos and Jeannine Anderson and have benefited from having their Madrona Grove Fruit Truck in our area. This Tuesday marks the start of a new season of produce availability from Jeannine and Michael.

The Madrona Grove Fruit Stand is located at the Building Earth Farm, 9140 Steamboat Island Road NW.

The Madrona Grove Fruit Stand is at Building Earth Farm two days a week, Tuesday and Friday,  from Noon to 7pm.

They will operate until the end of September.

Look for Madrona Grove at the Shelton Farmer’s Market on Satudays from 9am – 3pm.

For more information regarding either the Building Earth Farm or the Madrona Grove Fruit Stand, see the web site they jointly operate at

For information about goings on in our neighborhood, visit us on our Facebook Page. 

Madrona Grove Announces Their Winter Produce Subscription Program

Winter is around the corner and now is the time to subscribe to the Madrona Grove Winter Produce Program. Your order will be packed with staple winter vegetables, fresh winter storage apples and pears and tropical and citrus fruits (because we all need our vitamin C in the depths of winter), plus other goodies like bread cheese and chocolate truffles from Washington food producers. Staple winter vegetables include potatoes, garlic, onions, carrots, turnips, beets, parsnips, and fresh greens.

Madrona Grove will continue to have fresh crisp storage apples and pears from Washington farmers throughout the winter, and you can order extra boxes of these now for pickup at the Apple Affair on October 30, or be satisfied with their inclusion in your subscription. They’ll continue to work with local producers to bring you eggs, greens, dried  and canned fruit, cheese, baked goods and anything else that’s well produced and sounds delicious. You’ll need just a bit of adventuresome nature because the folks from Madrona Grove will be choosing and packing the order for you with an aim to give you a balanced, diverse selection of food items.

Click here to download an order form to complete. Send it by mail to Madrona Grove, with your check for $312.50. That’s half of the subscription price of $625.00.

For $125.00 per month you’ll receive yummy healthful food with the knowledge that 90% of those dollars are staying active in the local economies of our county and state.

Thanks again for continuing to support small, sustainable agriculture and business, and the efforts of Madrona Grove to bring farm fresh food to our neighborhood.

Jeannine and Michael

Madrona Grove
Summer Fruit Stand


Madrona Grove’s “Apple Affair” Returns October 30

Come taste and buy over 25 varieties of apples from small Washington farms. In what has become a Fall season tradition, Madrona Grove, the fruit truck people, invite you to come and try tasty apple dishes. If you have a favorite apple dish, bring it and the recipe to share. They’ll provide the Olympic Mountain ice cream, coffee, tea and hot apple cider.

Sunday, October 30
12 noon to 4 PM
Prosperity Grange

Apple supplies will be limited on the day of the event, but you can order apples by the box for pickup on the day of the event by calling Madrona Grove at 866-2810, by sending them an email at, or by placing an order with them, in person. They are at the Building Earth Farm, 9140 Steamboat Island Road NW, Tuesdays and Fridays, 12 noon to 7 PM. They are also at the Shelton Farmer’s Market from 9 AM to 3 PM until September 30.


Building Earth Farm and Madrona Grove Fruit Truck Readies for the 2011 Season

Building Earth Farm, at 9140 Steamboat Island Road, is now taking orders for the 2011 season and announcing a Summer Celebration on July 1st. In the Griffin area, we’re lucky to have access to a variety of local agricultural producers. We’ve written about Building Earth Farm on this blog, before. And, Building Earth Farm is one of the locations for the Madrona Grove Fruit Truck.

Summer Celebration
Friday, July 1st
4 PM to 7 PM
9140 Steamboat Island Rd. NW

On the afternoon of July 1st, the Building Earth Farm will open its’ garden gates to celebrate the opening of the season. There’ll be samples to taste and purchase.

Building Earth Farm Stand
Open weekly Tuesdays and Fridays, 12 noon to 7 PM
Beginning in late June (Mother Nature sets the exact date)

The Madrona Grove Fruit Truck will once again bring Washington-grown fruits picked at the perfect ripeness, local vegetables, and weekly surprises to you at 9140 Steamboat Island Road.

Building Earth 2011 Harvest Dates

Broiler Chickens
July 15, 16, 17
August 19, 20, 21
September 23, 24, 25



Building Earth Farm is now taking orders for broiler chickens. Their animals are raised without antibiotics or hormones; outdoors on pasture, connected with the ground. The chickens and turkeys are also fed organic grain.

For more details and to put your order in for broiler chickens, contact the Building Earth Farm directly:
9140 Steamboat Island Rd. NW
Olympia, WA 98502

Madrona Grove’s “An Applie Affair” October 24

Join Madrona Grove (the fruit truck people) at “An Apple Affair” to taste and buy over 25 varieties of apples from three or more small Washington farms.

Sunday, October 24
Noon to 4 PM
Prosperity Grange

They’ll also be offering for sale baked goods as well as select winter storage vegetables.

Indulge in tasty apple dishes from the community apple potluck and if you have a favorite apple dish, bring it and the recipe to share. Madrona Grove will provide Olympic Mountain Ice Cream, coffee, tea and hot apple cider.

Apple supplies will be limited on the day of the event, but you can order apples by the box for pickup on that day by calling Madrona Grove at 866-2810 or sending them an email at

We hope to see you at An Apple Affair!

Madrona Grove’s Fruit Truck to Close for Season, but Apple Event is October 25

This Friday, September 18 is the last day for this season’s fruit truck. It’s time to stock up, until next year, folks.

The Madrona Grove’s Fruit Truck is located behind the Subway Sandwich shop at 6541 Sexton Dr NW. They are open on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, 12 noon to 7 PM.

Although Madrona Grove is shutting down, for the season, they take it out, in style, with their annual apple event:

An Apple Affair

Sunday, October 25
12 Noon to 4 PM
Prosperity Grange

Taste and buy over 25 varieties of apples from three or more small Washington farms. This year we’ll be offering apple baked goods for sale as well as select winter storage vegetables.

Indulge in tasty apple dishes from the community apple potluck and if you have a favorite apple dish, bring it and the recipe to share. We’ll provide Olympic Mountain Ice Cream, coffee, tea and hot apple cider.

Apple supplies will be limited on the day of the event, but you can order supplies by the box for pickup on that day by calling us at 866-2810 or by stopping by the Fruit Truck before September 18.

Madrona Grove’s Summer Fruit Truck
1001 Cooper Point Rd. SW #140-178
Olympia, WA 98502

Griffin Neighbors Invited to “Grub Stake” a Truck for Madrona Grove

Most Steamboat Islanders know the Summer Fruit Truck. For the past two summers it’s been parked by the Grange where customers enjoy the best of Northwest and more exotic produce. The banana masthead had been hard to miss!

The Fruit Truck is a transformation of the big tent opposite the Island Market where the community first came to know Madrona Grove Seasonal Open-Air Market, and its owners Michael Manos and Jeannine Anderson.


For the past four years, Michael and Jeannine have been using their 1987 Buick Station Wagon, “Roselle,” to do all the hauling of fruit from Eastern Washington. Built to haul families on vacation, Roselle rose to the challenge and has performed an outstanding job, even after a roundtrip of 9000 miles, from Washington to Central America, the year before Madrona Grove was started. All those years, miles and pounds are finally taking their toll, and now Roselle is no longer able to make the long trip over and back across the Cascades. In addition, the weight and capacity of the station wagon proved inadequate even last year as the demand for great fruit steadily increases. This past year the Toyota, the Banana Truck, has had to pick up the slack and pull double duty as “The Fruit Truck” retail outlet, and to make the 20 or so trips over and back with fruit. It’s been a challenge for the truck, and Michael and Jeannine, but they’ve managed to pull it off with a lot of shuffling of stuff and many early mornings and late nights. In this fifth year of operation, it is clear that the business has become a part of the community that would be missed. A bigger, better vehicle is needed to carry on.

Choosing a life of voluntary simplicity, as Michael and Jeannine have done, has meant opting out of eligibility to obtain financing for a new vehicle.


We are proposing to the community and opportunity to “grub stake” a new fruit truck so that Madrona Grove can continue to bring local food to the community on a seasonal basis. The purpose of these community funded micro grants is to “seed” the financing of an economical, flexible vehicle which can transport fruit and produce in the summer, and, in the off season, do small hauling jobs to begin to support itself.

A grub stake was money put up to finance prospectors in their mining operations. In a sense, agriculture is a form of mining. It extracts nutrients from the sun, soil and water and makes the foods that nourish and sustain us. By brining the fruits of many farms to our community, Madrona Grove participates in the mining operation.

Madrona Grove is asking for micro-grants, or “grub-stakes” of $75 to help finance a 2006 Dodge Sprinter Cargo Van. Michael and Jeannine can manage the down payment. Oyster Bay Farm has offered to sign for the financing of the vehicle via a Guarantor’s Agreement on the financing contract (see The Fine Print). We have estimated that if we can get commitments for a $75 grub stake from 110 households, the payments for the first year of the truck’s operation will be covered. After that, we expect the truck to be self-supporting.

Click here to download the brochure. To put up a grub stake, complete the small form, on the brochure, and mail it with your $75 check (payable to “Madrona Grove”).


In today’s fast paced, instant gratification society, it’s easy to lose track of what it takes to put food on our tables. Few people get the chance to experience a life dedicated to growing food for others, and yet none among us could survive without those few who do. Many farmers don’t have the opportunity or time to sell their food directly to the consumer. By going to the farms to bring back food to our neighborhood, Madrona Grove provides farmers a much-needed market and offers the benefits of:

  • Access to the best produce of the summer season.
  • Building a sustainable, local economy.
  • Supporting small, independent businesses.
  • Supporting small family farms.
  • Taking part in securing a local food supply.


Over the past five years Michael and Jeannine have been developing relationships with small, family farmers living in Eastern Washington where land and climate come together to create a perfect growing environment for those luscious summer fruits we love. They also work directory with several small farms here in Western Washington for farm fresh veggies. Direct sales and sales to small retailers such as Madrona Grove allow these small farmers to keep more of the return on their farming investment than if they sent all of their food to the packing houses. Better for farmers, better for Madrona Grove and its customers.

Some of the farms Madrona Grove works with:

  • Schilter Family Farm, Nisqually, WA
  • Lopez Farm, Nisqually, WA
  • Kirsop Farms, Tumwater, WA
  • Edible Acres, Tonasket, WA
  • AppleCart Fruit, Tonasket, WA
  • River Valley Organics, Tonasket, WA
  • Bartella Farms, Omak, WA
  • Filaree Farms, Okanagan, WA
  • Rest-A-While Orchards, Pateros, WA
  • RAMA Farm, Bridgeport, WA
  • Fiel Orchards, Wenatchee, WA
  • Dick Boushay, Grandview, WA
  • Farmland Fruits, Wapato, WA

They also buy produce in season from neighbors here on the peninsula with gardens more bountiful than they can consume.


“We will continue to do what we do for as long as we are able; to cooperate with small, family farms to bring their harvest to our community; and to maintain high quality standards at prices that make the food accessible and the business viable.

We recognize that the constant in life is change, so we will have to remain flexible to the tug and shove of the changing commercial and personal landscapes as we work to serve the community in which we live.”

Click here to download the brochure. To put up a grub stake, complete the small form, on the brochure, and mail it with your $75 check (payable to “Madrona Grove”).


The Dodge Sprinter is a top-of-the-line Mercedes Diesel vehicle with the Dodge name on it. It’s capable of hauling up to 3800 pounds, averaging 25-30 miles per gallon, depending on the load size. Pioneer Organic in Seattle bought several for their home delivery service, as did Essential Bakery and many other small food related businesses, including Western Meats in Tumwater. Pioneer Organics and Essential Bakery both run their vehicles on bio-diesel. The demand for this vehicle is very high and the manufacturer is preparing to expand their production facilities to meet that demand. There are limited quantities of them available this year, with availability pushed back to March 2007 after those are sold. The resale value of this vehicle is one of the highest in the industry.

All grant funds (grub stakes) will be deposited into the Community Funded Micro-Grant account with Sterling Savings Bank. All grant funds over and above the cost of 1 year’s monthly payments will be applied directly to principal, until such time as the financing is complete. All grant funds over and above the complete cost of financing will remain in the Community Funded Micro-Grant account for future use by other community projects.

A 10% down payment will be made by Michael Manos and Jeannine Anderson dba Madrona Grove, to Lynwood Dodge on a 2006 Sprinter 2500 SHC/140.Pat Labine and Kathleen O’Shaunessy, dba Oyster Bay Farm are guarantors for the financing. A monthly finance payment will be automatically withdrawn by the financing agency from the Community Funded Micro-Grant account.

Copies of the guaranty contract between Madrona Grove and Oyster Bay Ram, as well as the finance contract are available by request.

Click here to download the brochure. To put up a grub stake, complete the small form, on the brochure, and mail it with your $75 check (payable to “Madrona Grove”).