Garden Oasis Farm field day will explore machinery and tools for vegetable farms – June 9, Coggon

For Release: May 24, 2017


T.D. Holub | Garden Oasis Farm | (319) 558-6481 | gofarmveggies@gmail.com | gofarmveggies.com

Tamsyn Jones | Outreach & Publications Coordinator | Practical Farmers of Iowa | (515) 232-5661 | tamsyn@practicalfarmers.org

COGGON, Iowa — When T.D. Holub was searching for equipment to use on his small vegetable farm, he thought he knew what he needed – but he had no way to see or try out options.

“I didn’t have much to compare to in the area, which made deciding what to buy difficult,” says T.D., who operates Garden Oasis Farm, LLC near Coggon.

T.D. grew up on a farm and knew about farm equipment, but was unfamiliar with vegetable implements and machinery. When he was working to get his vegetable farm started, machinery was his first big investment – so picking the right tools to invest in was critical for both production and economic reasons.

He now has what he needs, and will share his experience – and machinery selections – at a Practical Farmers of Iowa field day he and partner Sarah Gericke are hosting on Friday, June 9, from 4 to 6 p.m., near Coggon (3262 York Ave., northwest of town). The event – “Tractors and Tools with T.D.” – is free to attend and will include snacks following the field day.

The goal of the field day is to help other beginning farmers expedite their machinery research. In a show-and-tell style, T.D. will discuss his assorted machinery and tools, and attendees will have a chance to try some equipment in the field. T.D. will also discuss the cost and process of building his 10-by-14-foot and 24-by-12 foot CoolBot walk-in coolers.

Some of the tools and machinery on display will include: 50-horsepower tractors; an Allis Chalmers G tractor; a water wheel transplanter; Williams tool bar systems, including hilling discs, tines and sweeps; a Perfecta field cultivator; a Caroni rototiller; a three-point sprayer; a small square-bale shredder; a bed lifter; a Jang seeder; a Valley Oak wheel hoe; a soil blocker; and a seedling grow-room.

“I hope I can help farmers understand the types of tools and equipment used on a small vegetable farm,” T.D. says. “With this field day, other farmers can see this equipment up close and hear what I have liked and disliked about it.”

Garden Oasis Farm, LLC has grown from a half-acre farm with a small Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) business to an 8-acre vegetable farm with pastured poultry and eggs. T.D. and Sarah hope to create a diverse and sustainable farm near where T.D. was raised. They market their products through CSA, farmers market, grocery stores and restaurants.

Directions from Troy Mills: Drive north out of town on Troy Mills Road / Main Street. Follow the Main Street curve to the right to join Linn-Buchanan Road, heading east. At the Y-intersection, go left (north) onto Troy Mills Boulevard. After 1 mile, turn right (east) onto 330th Street and go 3 miles. Turn left (north) onto York Avenue.; the farm is 0.5 mile from the turn on the east side of the road.

Practical Farmers’ 2017 field days are supported by several sustaining and major sponsors, including: Ag Ventures Alliance; Albert Lea Seed; Center for Rural Affairs; Fertrell; Gandy Cover Crop Seeders; Grain Millers, Inc.; Iowa Beef Center; Iowa Environmental Council; Iowa State University Department of Agronomy; Iowa Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE); ISU Extension and Outreach; La Crosse Forage and Turf Seed; Lemken; Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture; MOSA Organic Certification; Natural Resources Defense Council; Organic Valley / Organic Prairie; Riverside Feeds, LLC; The Scoular Company; Trees Forever; Unilever; University of Iowa College of Public Health (I-CASH); Upper Iowa Audubon Society; USDA: Natural Resources Conservation Service; Wallace Chair for Sustainable Agriculture; and Welter Seed & Honey Co.


Practical Farmers of Iowa strengthens farms and communities through farmer-led investigation and information-sharing. Our values include: welcoming everyone; creativity, collaboration and community; viable farms now and for future generations; and stewardship and ecology. Founded in 1985, farmers in our network raise corn, soybeans, livestock, hay, fruits and vegetables, and more. To learn more, visit https://www.practicalfarmers.org.