Produce & Flowers

Splendid Earth Farm

Owner: Jeanne Vander Clute

111 West Street
Berlin, MD 21811
Worcester County

daytime phone: (410) 422-1433

Application Date: 2021-01-11

Applicant Details

Please briefly tell us why you are applying to be part of the Certified Naturally Grown program: *
I own a small (1/2 acre) vegetable farm on the Easter Shore of Maryland. I sell my vegetables at my town's farmers market, which is less than a mile from my home. The goals of my farm are to grow healthy, chemical and GMO free vegetables for my community, and to foster the health of the soil and the environment. I believe that the goals of the CNG program perfectly align with mine, and it's important to me that the program is grassroots and community based.
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? *
I first heard about CNG at Future Harvest's farming conference in Maryland when I was beginning my farm two years ago. In addition, several of the small farms that I admire from afar are CNG certified.
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 only use a broadfork.
Do you use Cover Crops? *
If yes, please list: *
Field pea, hairy vetch, winter rye, crimson clover (all organic)
Do you use Compost? *
If yes, please note general sources (on farm, purchased complete, local grass clippings, local dairy, etc.): *
I purchase my finished compost from Eastern Shore Forest Products.
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". *
1-2 wheelbarrow loads per 100 square feet (when transplanting or direct seeding new crops)
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. *
Alfalfa meal, in spring before planting (select beds)
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. *
I use a stirrup hoe to weed, and I weed by hand. Applying a layer of compost when turning beds has greatly reduced my weed pressure. I also use wood chips in the pathways between beds, which has also proven very helpful to reduce weeds. When creating new beds or for unused beds, I use silage tarps to kill weeds or existing grass. I do not use any form of chemical control for weeds.
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. *
I have had challenges with cabbage worms, aphids, and squash bugs, primarily. For all three I use row covers in the spring time as a method of control. I also remove eggs and pests by hand. I addition, I have planted herbs to deter insects. I have not yet used Bt on my crops, but if I do I will order DiPel DF, approved for organic use.
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. *
Due to the high levels of humidity and rainfall in my area, the disease issues that I face are primarily due to moisture. I have had issues with powdery mildew and mold. To control these, I trellis and stake all plants that I can to keep them off the ground. I also prune heavily to improve airflow. I have also found that the raised beds and wood chips in the pathways help keep plants dry and reduce the likelihood of moisture related issues.
Please list the water source you use for crop irrigation. If source is public river, pond or lake, please note the name: *
Town of Berlin water on one growing area, well water on the other growing area
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 order seeds from a variety of companies (Johnny's, High Mowing Organic Seeds, Baker Creek, Seed Savers Exchange). I try to purchase organic seeds as often as possible!
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? *
I mix my own.
What ingredients does your potting mix contain? If you purchase a mix, please also indicate which product. *
I purchase Pro-Mix, and mix with 1/10 parts compost and 1/10 parts organic worm castings (Wiggle Worm).
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. *
To the west, north, and east, the plot is surrounded by 5 acres or more of fields and woods in a conservation easement, so no conventional agriculture is near. To the south, across the road, conventional corn and soy is grown, but this is at least 500 yards away.


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: