Meet the Leek King of Ralph's Greenhouse
Ralph's Greenhouse sits on 200 acres of land in Mt. Vernon, Washington. It's a family-run farm, started by Ralph de Vries in 1980 as a garden project after he retired from dairy farming. Today, the certified-organic operation is run by Ray's son, Ray de Vries (a.k.a, the Leek King shown in the below photo) and his wife Becky.
With the help of over 100 farm-hands, Ralph's Greenhouse produces the beautiful beets and carrots in this box as well as, fennel, chard, kale, collard greens, and cabbage.
“We just like to eat (carrots) right out of the ground," John VanderWal, head of sales, said. "They’re delicious. You basically just wipe the dirt off and it’s like eating candy.”
VanderWal said he's known the deVries family for nearly 50 years and has lived and worked on the farm with his family for the last 8 growing seasons. There are four separate families that live on the farm full-time. Come July though, he said with the team planting, transplanting, weeding, and harvesting simultaneously, they are all stretched pretty thin. During the winter season, things slow down a bit and the workforce reduces down to about 50 people.
At any season though, the team at Ralph's Greenhouse is hard at work turning compost, rotating crops, and harvesting the most vibrant and nutritious produce possible.