Our Farm

Our Story

Nearly two decades ago, Farmer John and Katy with a commitment to: “Love well, Live well, and Eat well,” purchased the 10-acre “Farm sweet Alderlea Farm”. They started farming the land and selling vegetables to family and friends. Soon they rented more land and increased production to provide certified organic/biodynamic veggies to over 200 families in the Cowichan Valley, through the CSA (community supported agriculture) vegetable box program. Their commitment to fresh, honest food begins with the toil and love of growing the veggies and raising the animals. Now the grandchildren who live on the farm delight in planting, hoeing, and harvesting. The bounty of the farm is served in the restaurant. The Farm, Café, and Community continue to bring this farm family full circle in their hopes and dreams.

The restaurant is celebrating its 12th year. It is bigger and better than ever! With Farmer John and Katy’s son, Marley, taking the helm of the restaurant, it is bigger and better.

Join the Alderlea Farm 2022 Veggie Program

Starting mid-April you can start coming to pick a weekly bag or bags of veggies at the farm. The cost is only $20. You will pay by the week, so that means that you can miss a week here and there, without having to pay. Sign up today! veggies@alderleafarm.com

“We joined the Alderlea Farm Veggie Program in 2021 after hearing great reviews from friends & family, and we were not disappointed. John & Katy’s “Farm (theirs) to Table (ours) Program” is brilliant! In 2021, we enjoyed fresh, organic, varied & delicious produce every week from April to December.

  •  You just might get a chance to try & taste veggies that you might never usually buy at your local grocers, case in point: my husband now likes & asks for squash & broccoli! 😉 Score!
  •  Their veggies will spoil your palette! Once you taste the organically grown & fresh garden taste of Alderlea vegetables, it is hard to go back to our winter diets of imported produce.
  • My grandchildren were overjoyed to find a flower in their salad!
  • Bonus restaurant and canned pickles!
  •  John & Katy are the kindest & friendliest people that you will ever meet! Debbie and Marcel

You don’t need chemicals to have disease-resistant plants 

Biodynamic farms don’t use artificial pesticides or fertilizers, so you never have to worry about toxic chemicals in your food. Instead, we pay attention to the natural properties of the landscape and cultivate a complete, balanced ecosystem. At Alderlea Farm, we find the land is happiest, healthiest, and most beautiful when we encourage its natural mix of meadow, stream and forest. Pests are less likely where there is a harmonious diversity of plants and animals. Community-supported agriculture (CSA) is truly sustainable, both ecologically and socially. As a veggie box participant at Alderlea Farm, you take an active part in the well-being of your family, the community, and the world. We’re committed to regenerative and biodynamic sustainable practices for an authentic destination food experience.

Plug into the Universe for abundance 

Alderlea Farm might be ecologically independent, but it couldn’t produce the way it does if it wasn’t also deeply connected to the rhythms of the natural universe. The same patterns and dynamic tensions echo from the activities of the minutest cell to the wide swing of the planets. At Alderlea Farm, we harmonize the growing processes with processes in the wider environment. And judging by the quality of the produce the earth rewards us with here, she’s ecstatic about our attention to these affairs.

Smart soil makes a smart plant 

Unfortunately, much of the produce available at the supermarket is wrung out of exhausted, abused soil. But happily, biodynamic farming methods are like medicine that heals the soil. At Alderlea Farm we prepare eight biodynamic preparations. Sprayed on the fields or applied to the compost pile, they steer processes that nourish and revitalize the earth. In a way, it’s like the soil remembers how to be soil. There’s a kind of intelligence at work! The result is that plants have great material to build themselves with—and they pass that vital dynamism onto you.

John and Katy’s passion for biodynamic farming shapes Alderlea Farm’s approach to agriculture, business, and the community.  Biodynamic agriculture focuses on putting back what you take out, healing the land and creating a balanced and self-sufficient system.

excerpt from AgriSuccess, FCC

The calloused , worn hands of a farmer tell much about the season, each knuckle’s cracks and nicks, are homage to roughly wrestling a living from the land. Yet it is not the hands, but the eye that will not belie the future. At Alderlea Farm, the Ehrlichs’ eyes show promising tales indeed. It’s in the way John’s sight tends to drift as he speaks, a far-off , seer clear stare focused on a distant moment, a stare that’s picturing potential. Mixed with Katy’s direct unwavering gaze, flowing out from a deep well of genuine inner faith, the two paint a picture of a sustainable future with family, both organic and real. “It’s my ideal life”, said Katy. Digging Dirt – Life in the Cowichan Aaron Richard

Veggie Box Community Supported Agriculture ( CSA)
The program starts again April 2021 and runs until December .
Pick up a grocery bag of fresh vegetables for $20 each week. You do not pay in advance but when you pick-up each week. This allows you the freedom to pass on pick up. veggies@alderleafarm.com

Farm Newsletters

Newsletters

Testimonials

Quality and Value

My family and I are absolutely thrilled with Alderlea Farm’s veggie box program. I have been part of many other organic veggie box programs over the years, and none have come close to what you get from John and Katy in terms of quality and value. To say their produce is fresh is an understatement; veggies are often being picked while I am picking up! Also the variety is amazing; I have enjoyed trying many new veggies and thanks to Katy’s awesome recipes more ways to cook them. It is clear that John and Katy love what they do. There is so much joy on the farm, and it is such a pleasant experience being there. I cannot wait for many more seasons with Alderlea Farm.

Meaghan Taylor-Macdonald

One of Our Favourite Things

We really enjoyed picking up fresh organic vegetables each week. It was a treat to see the different offerings….kale, lettuce, green onions, carrots, squash so many good things. We look forward to coming back next spring. Also one of our favourites things is to have lunch or dinner on your lovely patio and enjoy a wood fired pizza and salad, and also the lovely pastoral view,

Jean and Richard

Super Organic

I so enjoy my CSA veggies ;from the drive out to the bucolic farm to the moment we feast on the biodynamic veggies. I tell my friends they are super organic. So much more flavour and I am happy to be  continuing my relationship with the enterprising and amiable Farmer John and Miss Katy.

Healed My Headache

My week’s highlight is veggie pick-up day from Alderlea.    This lettuce literally healed my headache on more than one occasion, reflecting the work of biodynamic soils and organisms, as well as,the goodness of the growers. Such generous, kind farmers and it shows in the veggies and the soil!  

GaChing Kong

The beautiful Glenora Valley

Cook Katy, Rural Woman of the Year

Cook Katy at Alderlea Farm

Cook Katy was awarded Rural Woman of the Year by the Lieutenant Governor of BC. This award is given to women who have made a difference and are valued members of the farming community. Ehrlich is a farmer who  “embodies the principles of sustainable food production and distribution, stewardship for the earth and building community.” She is a cook who knows how to cook real food with creativity, effort, and love, transforming the freshest organic produce and/or meat into a taste sensation.