The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Green-thumbed gig ‘em

The+Springdale+Farm+produces+over+3%2C800+a+year+for+more+than+50+Austin+restaurants.%26%23160%3B
Photo by Shelby Knowles

The Springdale Farm produces over 3,800 a year for more than 50 Austin restaurants. 

The Foores are what they call, “accidental urban farmers.”

Thirty years ago, Glenn and Paula Foores, Classes of 1979 and 1982 respectively, would not have dreamed of running a farm. At the time, the couple was just a few years out of college and running a landscaping business together.

In 1992, however, the Foores bought a community plot of land in Austin that would take them down an unexpected path. The Foores housed their landscaping business there until 2007 when they felt something pulling them towards farming.

“It was a life-changing moment where you’ve got the rest of your life to figure out what you wanna do to make a difference,” Glenn Foore said. “Planting three 18-wheelers of St. Augustine grass at someone’s house wasn’t doing it for me. And so I thought about it a while, and I told my wife, ‘I don’t know, what the heck?’” 

With their background in horticulture and their plot’s proximity to a river, the Foores decided to get their hands dirty and open a farm of their own.

“We’re just a quarter mile from the river, so we put in a big plot and, this being Austin, people were stopping by going, ‘What are you doing?’ and, ‘Are you gonna be selling this stuff?’” Paula Foore said. “We just kinda fell in love with it and the community really supported it.”

Today, the Springdale Farm produces over 3,800 pounds of produce a year for more than 50 Austin restaurants. People from around the area have also fallen in love with the aesthetics of the urban farm, and it has become a popular venue for weddings and other gatherings. 

A&M’s own Howdy Farm, a student-run farm, shares Springdale Farm’s focus on nurturing the connection between locally grown food and community.

Jessica Newman, Howdy Farm’s president and communications senior, said she believes in the transparency of food sources and urban farms.

“Urban farms create the opportunity to know your farmer and your food source,” Newman said. “We all need food, so it’s important to know where it comes from.” 

Paula Foore said the support she and her husband have received strengthened her faith in the Aggie network.

“We have kids that are Aggies — one of them is graduating this semester and another is Class of  2012 — and my dad went there,” Paula Foore said. “So there’s a whole line of Aggies in my family. For my kids to see how Aggies support Aggies has been tremendous for them.”

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