Tillow Acres Farm is located in the southeast end of rural Hardin County Ohio, just east of the quaint, small town of Mount Victory.
The farm operates out of the only homestead on the property, which dates back to the early 1900s. While the old barns and outbuildings originally on the property are long gone, there remains a 12' x 30' chicken coop - which the farm's hens winter-in when not on pasture.
Roughly one acre is devoted to the farm's vegetable/fruit production and the homestead dwelling. The remaining 5.5 acres is established in pasture. Before 2020 the land had been farmed conventionally under the family's grain operation. The property's two metal buildings and grain storage bins are still used in the grain operation today.
Photo of the farm circa 1970s.
The primary purpose of Tillow Acres Farm will always be to reconnect people to the land that grows their food. But equally important is being the steward of the farm and a promoter of agriculture in a positive light to my grandchildren, and especially young women who aspire to learn and grow in the organic and regenerative ag industry.
Our internship program is important in helping us meet that mission. My hope is Tillow Acres Farm will grow to sustainably be able to offer experiential learning opportunities to the young aspiring future organic farmers of our community's school district for many, many years to come. In 2021 we successful brought in five interns, and look forward to continuing the program once again for this year, 2022.
Feed what's living today, and tomorrow's harvest will take care of itself.
The Farm and Farmer
The winter of 2019 brought an end to a 3-year soul searching expedition, and the beginning of the concept of Tillow Acres Farm.
There's a beautiful quote by Robert Louis Stevenson widely known and rightfully loved, 'Don't judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds that you plant.' Therein lies the 'why' behind the decision to transition 6.5 acres of conventionally farmed farmland to organic market-farming and grazing, at the age of 60 years young.
My name is Tonya Ramsey, and I'm owner and operator of Tillow Acres Farm. I'm a mom, a nana and a woman farmer. I live, love and work to nurture and grow what's living. I have a love-relationship with hands-in-the-dirt born after reading Pearl S. Buck's, The Good Earth as a teenager. Marrying a farmer only solidified the relationship. Even now it still rings true. My head and heart heal better with hands-in-the-dirt.
By its very design, Tillow Acres is and will be intensively farmed. It is scaled small intentionally. I'm working to learn, apply and transform the existing land to regenerative agriculture principles. Through much planning, infrastructure, new systems and practices its amazing to see the farm's transformation. In just one short year, the farm has defined growing spaces, permanent beds, perennial plant stock for strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and asparagus along with a small orchard of 14 fruit trees. With much help from my hard-working crew of 4 grandchildren, in 2020 Tillow Acres successfully launched a small 'pilot' CSA share program to family and friends willing to give feedback on our quality and selection grown.
The effort and work done that year have contributed to the foundation of today. Exciting!