Board Profile: Secretary Lance Smith

Lance Smith and Brian Jones of S Bar J Farmstead in Enumclaw, have lived in their 108-year-old farmhouse for since 2014 with their twins.

Although their farm operation is focused primarily on providing healthy meats and produce for their own family today, they are raising sheep for lamb meat, which is USDA processed and sold through L & B Mini Ranch in Enumclaw.

After leaving Capitol Hill and finding their ten-acre farm in Enumclaw, Lance got involved in PTA at the kids’ school, Featherhaven Native Songbird Rehabilitation and other community groups. Now also acting as secretary for Enumclaw Plateau Farmers’ Market, he has been vital to getting us ready to serve the community.

The family was regular attendees at the farmers’ markets in Seattle and appreciated access to fresh, local produce and products. Being part of making that accessible to our area is the driving commitment behind Lance’s work for our board. He includes his kids in caring for their gardens and livestock, emphasizing the importance and appreciation of how it came to be; that it’s healthful and nutritious; that it is free of preservative compounds and chemical additives. He believes in the practice of keeping children involved in farming so they will help perpetuate small farming into our future.

Beyond the farming and volunteering, Lance is a talented multimedia artist. His studio is filled with projects, materials and artifacts of history, botany, art and entomology specimens. As time allows, he is creating fabric and art reproductions of butterflies and moths as well as multimedia pieces that incorporate his scratch board art and natural elements. His talent is easily seen in his specimens under glass!

Vendor Spotlight: Cedar Spring Farm of Enumclaw

Steve Neason, Owner

Produce: green beans, basil, beets, carrots, cucumbers, peppers, eggplant, lettuce, turnips, broccoli, cauliflower, lettuce, radicchio, escarole, garlic and more.

Steve Neason, of Cedar Spring Farm of Enumclaw, has been gardening his entire adult life. He was the “IT guy with a garden” during his 32 years at Boeing and since retiring, gardening has become his daily “work”.

Steve’s philosophy on gardening is three-fold:

  1. If he won’t eat it, he won’t grow it.
  2. He is focused on flavor.
  3. He insists on leaving the soil better than when he found it.

He utilizes various sustainable and organic practices to enhance and amend the soil. His garden is chemical free and cared for with a scientific curiosity that experiments with biological ways to grow plants, address pests, weeds and soil quality. You can see from the well-worn work pants and his beautifully planned garden beds that he spends a lot of time ensuring his produce is the best it can be.

With a partial acre on 268th at the location of his farm’s name sake – Cedar Spring – and a hoop house off 228th, Steve has narrowed in on some “to be counted on” specialties for the farmer’s market crowds: lettuce, radicchio, escarole, cauliflower, broccoli, garlic and specialty squashes. After spending time over the years in Asia, Steve also adds in Japanese varieties of vegetables, like the sweet turnip or white eggplant that “taste completely different” than the varieties you can get at local grocery stores. He likes sharing good food with people and helping them learn about different varieties and flavors of other types of vegetables.

When he’s not in his own garden, he can be found helping his neighbors, fellow farmers and gardeners. He doesn’t have a cape, at least not one we can see, but he’s well known and regarded as an important fixture to the growing and farming community on the plateau. We are thrilled to have Cedar Spring Farm as a vendor at the Enumclaw Plateau Farmers’ Market. It’s the only place you will be able to get his vegetables this year, so don’t miss it!

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