Burr Oak Gardens, LLC is a family-owned and operated Certified Organic farm in Rio, WI. We grow Certified Organic vegetable and herb starts for sale at our on farm retail greenhouse as well as a full line of annual bedding plants. We also have outdoor production of fresh, yummy vegetables and a few fruits, such as melons, watermelons and strawberries. Our farm dates back to roughly the turn of the last century and we still maintain most of the original buildings. The crown jewel of our farm, without a doubt, is the massive 300+ year-old burr oak tree in the yard.
Tyler’s parents bought the property in the early 1980s. For many years Tyler’s father raised pigs on the farm and when we began vegetable farming in 2010 we were able to repurpose a lot of the equipment. For seven years we rented the land and the buildings from Tyler’s parents until the spring of 2017, when we purchased the farm.
All of the produce we sell is grown right here on our farm. We have two greenhouses where we start many of our crops, and a high tunnel, which we use to harden our transplants off before they are planted outside. We also have a retail greenhouse space with over 2,500 square feet of growing space. We grow annual bedding plants and Certified Organic vegetable plants and herbs for sale to the general public starting late-April through mid-June each year.
Between the land that we own and a few acres rented from a neighbor, we have 18 acres of land that is under our management. With so much land we are able to leave different fields fallow and under cover crop each year. This allows us to build up organic matter in the soil, while also maintaining an extensive crop rotation to help alleviate disease and insect pressure. In 2014 we began installing swales to help with erosion issues on the Southern edges of our fields. In 2018 we added a permanent grass waterway across five of our fields to help mitigate erosion that occurred after heavy/extended rain events.
In 2020 we applied and received an NRCS grant to install Monarch Butterfly habitat on six acres. In the fall of 2020 we planted a mix of 30+ prairie plant species and are hoping to add to that diversity with selected plantings over the course of the next five years.