Ransom Hill Garlic

About Us


Knowing your farmer is the best assurance that the food you buy is grown in the  most responsible manner. Edye and I are unlikely candidates to be called farmers, or even be farmers. But fate is a wonderful thing. Ten years ago we were blessed to buy a small country home on the side of a hill overlooking a beautiful valley.  At the time, I wasn't really sure we made the right move, but in hindsight, it was a life changing move.
As city slickers moving to the country, we found a big advantage in having knowledgeable country neighbors: Our neighbors John and Karen have been farming their one hundred twenty acre farm for over forty years. John and Karen own and operate Pompey Gold Vineyards, growing organic vegetables, plums, grapes, sweet potatoes, shittake mushrooms and more. They have shared with us secrets of living in the country that would have taken a life time to learn. With John and Karen's blessing and their hard work they invited us to join in the farm and did we. A new way of life was emerging, healthy and fun. In 2006 we were gifted our first Nonna Rose Italian garlic seed.  My sister and brother-in-law, Pam and Edwin Falk had been planting it for thirty years. Our first bed was a mere 300 bulbs, we were hooked.
The question now was do we quit our day jobs?  Edye a Syracuse School teacher for 22 years has more time to devote to her special students before she can be a full timer.  I retired after thirty years as a Syracuse Police Officer and went on running my motor home rental business. Both careers were demanding and not having to commute to work looked like a great idea. So in June of 2012 I retired again, and now having a well established garlic crop, John Sustare my neighbor was going expand my farming world to viticulture and wine making.  With three kinds of New York grapes and 10 acres of them there was a lot to learn. I couldn't have been luckier to land here  with garlic, grapes, shittake mushrooms and wine. Two months later while we worked in the vineyard John died. So sad, what to do?  Karen pulled her life up by the bootstraps and tackled the farm head on. With great help from her friends we were able to harvest and sell all of John's garlic and grapes that year. We have taken the vineyard forward and everyday we learn more about the vines and in the process we are growing some very fine New York  State table and wine grapes.


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