Wednesday, August 7, 2013

For Love of Lamb and Life

The July-August edition of Martha Stewart Living Magazine has published a wonderful feature article about a Charlottesville area Yarn CSA.  Each year you buy your very own share of hand sheared fleeces straight from the farm. Most often the term CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) refers to the purchase of produce throughout the growing season. Buying into a CSA before the crop is harvested helps farmers plan and pay for the coming year. In 2007, Susan Gibbs, owner of Juniper Moon Farm, began the first Yarn and Fiber CSA in the United States where individuals can pay a set annual fee and receive in turn lovely yarns. For economic reasons, Susan relocated her 8 year old business from Martha's Vineyard to Virginia giving her the opportunity to expand.

Sally, one of my hens on Forsythia Hill.
To raise livestock or crops as a business, one must have a deep commitment and love for farming. It always sounds so romantic, to uproot yourself from the big city to live among nature in a rural farming community, but it's also a lot of hard work. Animals have needs and get sick or worse get killed by predators and crops fail due to unpredictable weather and pests. Farmers have to juggle family and health while keeping one eye on the animals living off the land. It's never easy but once farming gets in your blood, it's there to stay!

Photo by Gabriela Herman. Courtesy of Martha Stewart Living. Copyright ©2013.
Originally, Susan worked as an executive in New York City and farming piqued her interest so she bravely tossed in the towel and began raising sheep!  She has a deep love for the animals that she raises applying personal principles and values as part of her decision making.

I appreciate the fact that all Lambs and Goats live out their full life in a pasture and are not eaten or disposed of once no longer useful to the business. Also, processing of the wool is provided by a small family owned mill.

It sounds like Susan has certainly found her niche and has continued to expand her business in positive and meaningful ways. Her website is interesting hosting a LambCam, beautiful knitting patterns, and a peek into life on the farm.  Nearly 80% of past years shareholders resubscribe... something or someone is definitely working at Juniper Moon.

Many thanks to Martha Stewart Living for providing several photos for this blog post.  All photos are copyrighted.  Pick up a copy of this months Martha, it's only available in newsstands until August 16th.



  1. This is just fascinating and my dream is to have a farm like this - what a great inspiring article!

    Thank you,


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