Willow Garden is owned and managed by Jason & Seraina Killoran
Jason and Seraina Killoran began down the road to becoming organic market gardeners when they both were in their mid-20s. They didn't have much experience when they started off, but they were determined.
Jason's Family land near Jonesville is what brought them both to the area. Leonard “Snick” Seveers was Jason’s great grandfather, and his farm was still owned by his Grandpa when he began to take an interest in farming. Snick had passed away in the late 1980s and since his only son left the farm and raised his family out of state none of them took an interest in farming. So, in 2009 Jason came to Jonesville to start working towards becoming a farmer, Snick’s Farm was a blank slate full of potential. Seraina came to the farm a couple of years later as WWOOFer from Switzerland, looking to improve her English and spend a summer working on an small organic farm. They hit it off from the start, and before the summer ended they were married.
In 2012 they decided to move off the family farm and bought a small house with 8 acres and several barns a few miles north of Snick’s Farm. The property they bought needed a lot of work, so they continued to grow produce and raise livestock at Snick’s Farm. Until 2017, when they decided it was time to focus on what they could do best on their own land, and since they couldn’t manage their beef cattle and sheep on a small 8-acre property they sold them. They had been growing produce for markets and CSAs from the beginning but they never had a property greenhouse or packing area at Snick’s Farm. Once the animals were gone they began working on fixing the barns to create an efficent packing area. They built new greenhouses with efficient coal stoves, and build about 1/4 acre of hoop houses. By spring of 2018, they broke ground on a 2-acre garden and started their second farm business “Willow Garden”.
To make sure the garden would be productive they invested in the soil. In the first years, they brought in truckloads of manure, compost, and mulch to give the soil the organic matter it would need to produce healthy vegetables year after year. After 3 years their investments in the soil were starting to pay off they had increased the organic in the hoop houses by 250%. Their crops were starting to look healthier and yields were increasing. On their way to creating Willow Garden they rarely made enough to pay themselves, and often did most of the work themselves. Two years after starting the new farm business they were able to hire a seasonal farm crew, allowing them to manage the farm better. They now farm year-round, spending the winter months planning the season, making maple syrup in the early spring, starting seeds in their greenhouse for plant sales and their own garden, and selling a wide variety of fresh-picked organic produce from April - December.