When we bought the farm my husband kindly informed me I would need to remain employed as the farm would never produce an income but be a financial drain. Me being Me, set out to prove him wrong – and I think I am winning and have his support as ideas man and handyman.
The week we bought the farm, along with joining the Alpaca Association, I joined the Tree Crops Association. A field trip with the local branch took us to Renwick and the Nut Ranch – a hazelnut grove and business. I said “I can do that” and set out to achieve it.
I enjoyed developing and building the Rock Ridge Nuts business and one year I sold over 2 tonne of nuts.
I was offered trees to harvest. After a couple of years searching for nuts in long grass and weeds and hitting my head on branches too many times, I took over the management of 4 hazelnut groves in the Moutere and 1 at the Nelson Lakes. Many thanks to these owners. I took on a team to help mow, weed spray, desucker, prune and rake out the orchards and all hands on deck for harvest time.
I have also made my farming experiences available to WWOOFers and FHINZ – Farm Help in New Zealand. A great benefit to both parties.
Over the years many people supplied me with their almonds, hazelnuts, macadamias, pine nuts, and walnuts. Many many hours went into cracking, sorting, roasting, and packaging ready to sell at the Nelson Farmers Market and Nelson Saturday Market.
I now sell Nut Harvesters, TJ Nut Crackers and provide a nut cracking service. Bring back your roasted nuts and turn them into nutty butter.
If you have questions about trees, product, marketing, or need your nuts cracked, I can help steer you in the right direction.