Pam Morrow from Iona Herbs is a one-woman-show. She has spent her whole life growing herbs and produce on the Tyagarah property where she still resides. She was raised growing food with her father and realised at a very young age she always wanted to work in dirt. The property is a beautiful one that has changed over the years, from dairy to small crops and now a nursery.
Certified organic, Pam sells an excellent variety of seedlings and bunches of herbs at Mullumbimby Farmers Market every Friday morning. Pam also sells her own line of seeds, which she harvests from previous crops. She stocks rosemary, thyme, oregano, sage, lemongrass, basil and coriander, as well as seasonal produce, including leafy greens and Asian vegetables, turmeric and ginger.
Iona Herbs produce is grown in punnets in a covered nursery with her organic soil, using only warmth and water to raise the crop. 50 per cent of the produce comes from purchased certified organic heirloom seeds, and the rest using Pam’s own seed line.
‘I believe growing in natural conditions means the seedlings are better adapted to our local climate and will be stronger and healthier plants to raise’, Pam says.
On Thursdays Pam wanders through her nursery selecting the plants she feels are ready to go to the market, which are sold in punnets or bunches with no plastic packaging.
Marketgoers who are looking for locally-grown, organic food they can raise at home make a bee-line to visit Iona Herbs – because they know the advice they will receive on selecting and planting the seedlings will be extraordinary. Having a successful backyard garden can depend on many things, but healthy seedlings are a very important start.
When asked for suggestions for planting at this time of year, Pam advised ‘soft leaf vegetables, which require afternoon shade, or Mediterranean herbs that enjoy full sun. In the summer months – corn, cucumber, pumpkin, capsicum and eggplant. Just make sure your soil is moist, and remember mulch is excellent for retaining moisture. Observation is key!’
‘I love manning my stall at the farmers’ markets, I enjoy meeting and talking to customers, getting to know them over the years and building a connection. Some women would come to buy seedlings when pregnant and I now get visited by their children too, it’s wonderful’, she says.
Iona Herbs is at Mullumbimby Farmers Market, Friday mornings from 7–11am.