Produce & Flowers

Hazel & Olive Urban Farm

Owner: John Boujoukos

Pittsburgh, PA

Web site:

Application Date: 2020-05-01

Applicant Details

Please briefly tell us why you are applying to be part of the Certified Naturally Grown program: *
I strongly believe in natural and regenerative agricultural practices and I want to convey that to my customer base.
Are you currently third party Certified for your produce operation by any other organization (Organic, Biodynamic, etc)? *
Have you ever been certified in the past? *
Have you ever been denied certification? *
How did you hear about Certified Naturally Grown? *
The internet
How did you learn to farm, and for how long have you been farming for market? What has prepared you to farm successfully according to CNG standards? *

General Farm Information

Farm Acreage you want listed as Certified Naturally GrownTM:
Total Farm Acreage you actually GROW on: *
Number of above acreage that you own: *
Number of above acreage that you lease: *
Do you have other acreage in "Conventional" Agricultural Systems? *
General Listed Acreage Breakdown
Veg Crops:
Fruit Crops:
Other Acreage:
Please check all items you grow and will market as Certified Naturally GrownTM *

Please Specify Any Other Items:
Please check all markets you grow for (this will be displayed on your farm profile to help potential buyers find you). *

Please Specify Other Markets:

Farmland Management and Practices

Primary Tillage System: *
I broke ground with a rotary plow and rototilled intual compost amendments, but from here on out it will be power harrow and broadforks only.
Do you use Cover Crops? *
If yes, please list: *
I have not determined yet what my cover crop mix will be this fall, but it will contain at least 3-4 species.The non-profit that I lease one of my sites from has consistently used a cover crop mix in the past.
Do you use Compost? *
If yes, please note general sources (on farm, purchased complete, local grass clippings, local dairy, etc.): *
Agrecyle, a local composting company
Please list application rates. Give a specific amount or range (for example: one to two tons per acre, ten wheelbarrow loads per 1,000 square feet, or 1-2 inches deep). Do not answer "varies". *
On my clayey site I incorporated 23 yards over about .22 acres, which was then incorporated with weed residues, then as raised beds are built they are topped with another 2-4 inches. My other site is nutrient rich enough that I am not applying compost yea
Do you use Manure? *
Please list any other brought in fertility sources that you use (specific rock powders, lime, soybean / alfalfa meal, specific purchased pre-mixes, etc)and how often it's used. If you indicate a name brand product, please also specify the ingredient/s. *
I have just incorporated the compost, compost samples and incorporated mix samples are currently being sent out for testing if deficiencies are found OMRI listed slow release products may be applied. I also produce compost and vermicompost tea from nearby weeds and my own vermicomposting to supplement nutrients through root and foliar feedings.
Have any chemical fertilizers been applied to the fields you are seeking Certification for in the last three years (36 months)? *
Have any non-acceptable pesticides and/or herbicides been applied to these fields in the last 3 years? *
Do you use Professional Soil Testing services? *
Describe your primary weed problems AND methods of control. Do not answer "none". You MUST indicate either actual weed challenges and/or LIKELY challenges, and you must ALSO indicate how you manage (or would manage) them. If you indicate a product, also specify how often it's used. *
Rhizomatic grasses and thistle at one site, Japanese knotweed, grasses and mugwart at the other site. I use silage tarps to occulate large area, clear plastic to solarize, landscape fabric over beds with holes cut out for planting to reduce incidence, cardboard covered with wood hips in pathways, weedwacking around the perimeter, and hand weeding primarily with hula hoes in the beds. I may introduce low growing ground cover in some areas to out compete with the weeds as well.
Describe your primary insect challenges AND methods of control. Do not answer "none". You MUST indicate either actual pest challenges and/or LIKELY challenges, and you must ALSO indicate how you manage (or would manage) them. If you indicate a product, also specify how often it's used. *
Flea beetles, cucumber beetles, potato beetles, Japanese beetles, allium leaf miner, cabbage moths, and tomato hornworm will most likely be the biggest threats. I rely primarily on tight fitting agribon as roe cover for ad much of the season as possible without precluding pollination. I plant herbs and flowers that are known to throw off pests and attract predators. With high value crops I will resort to hand picking if necessary. Finally as a last resort I would consider relatively specific and otherwise benign formulations like Dipel (OMRI listed) but I have never had to in the past.
Describe your primary disease challenges AND methods of control. Do not answer "none". You MUST indicate either actual disease challenges and/or LIKELY challenges, and you must ALSO indicate how you manage (or would manage) them. If you indicate a product, also specify how often it's used. *
Early and late blight and powdery mildew. I consider compost tea foliarly applied a mild preventative measure, but when diseases occur removing early infected foliage/plants, pruning/harvesting in the area to increase airflow, H202 spraying followed by a compost tea spraying as a sort of 'perobiotic' would be my primary measures.
Please list the water source you use for crop irrigation. If source is public river, pond or lake, please note the name: *
Municipal water, filtered through activated charcoal to remove chlorine and chloramine so I am not harm soil microbial communities or earthworms.
Are there any known contaminants in the irrigation water? *
Are you a maple producer who seeks to certify your sugarbush? *

Seeds, Transplants and Buffers

How do you select your seeds? CNG standards call for growers to make a good faith effort to locate organically grown seeds by contacting at least 3 major suppliers. *
I purchase organic seed whenever possible. My mushroom spawn is also all certified organic.
Do you purchase or grow using any Genetically Modified seeds? *
Do you use any chemically treated seeds in your operation? *
Do you grow your own transplants? *
Do you purchase potting soil, or do you mix your own on the farm? *
What ingredients does your potting mix contain? If you purchase a mix, please also indicate which product. *
Organic vermiculite, happy frog potting mix, PittMoss organic growing mix, vermicompost (homemade)
Are all of your transplants grown according to CNG standards, without synthetic fertilizers or wetting agents? *
If any transplants are not grown according to CNG standards, please list them here. (If they all are, put "N/A".) This produce may not be marketed as Certified Naturally Grown. *
Do you purchase any transplants from outside sources? *
Chemical/Spray Drift and Buffers:
Is there any likelihood of Chemical/Spray drift contamination of your fields? *
Do you have an adequate buffer to protect yourself from potential contamination? *
Please describe your buffer. Be as specific as possible. On all sides, how far is it from your crops to the next closest use (road, conventional crop, residential yard)? Be sure to specify what is grown on neighboring land that is in agricultural use. For example: To the north and east, a wooded area of at least 100 yards separates us from the neighbor's corn fields, to the south is a fallow field at least 100 yards deep separating us from the road, and to the west about 60 feet separates our crops from a field where conventional corn and soybeans are grown. *
One site has been managed organically for >4 years, it is surrounded on 3 sides by the non-profit entity that owns the land and manages it all organically, and on the 4th side is >100 ft of woods. The second site has woods on 2 sides, a residential house on one side, I asked their landscaper if he uses any chemical controls and he told me no he only mows. The 4the side is a road, but farming is set back 25-30ft from, and is uphill 10-15 ft. I also manage that whole section of the city block for weeds so they would have no reason to spray, and I know the city managed it last year by mowing, and that before that it was farmed with organic standards.


Please indicate your agreement with the following statements by checking the boxes.
I will not label, or in any way lead consumers to believe that produce not raised in accord with CNG standards is Certified Naturally GrownTM. *
I understand that I have to complete at least one (and hopefully more) Certification Inspection(s) of another farm in my area each year, and that the inspection will NOT be of the same farmer that inspected me. *
I have reviewed the Certified Naturally Grown certification standards, I understand them, and I will abide by them. I understand that if I have any questions I may contact CNG for clarification. *
You may use this space to tell us anything else you think we should know about your farm:
I mention several times that there are 2 sites, but where you ask for the address there is only room to put 1. The other site is 4417 Chatsworth Ave, Pittsburgh PA 15206.