Sunrise Valley Farm
Gail and Harry Groot
4615 Mountain Pride Rd.; Hiwassee, VA 24347
On 110 acres near Snowville, VA, SunriseValley Farm has been a family operation practicing sustainable agriculture and forestry, and raising Heritage Breed Livestock since 1977. Now engaging its fourth generation, we’ve focused on evolving to find what species best suit the land we steward.
Almost 90 acres are in forest, and long-term sustainable forest management has been a centerpiece of our stewardship. Our remaining open land has, over the years, been host to draft horses, milk goats, poultry, personal and truck gardens, fruit and nut trees, bramble crops, and a host of experimental crops (ask us about hardy Kiwis and why we don’t grow them anymore!)
We’ve settled on a set of fauna and flora that do well: Leicester Longwool Sheep, Huacaya Alpacas (which produce a dense, soft, crimpy sheep-like fiber), Myotonic (Tennessee Fainting) Goats, Nubian Goats, Delaware and Americana Chickens, Narragansett Turkeys, and Karakachan Livestock Guardian Dogs. We have blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and a variety of apple and cherry trees. We collaborate widely in value added ag and forestry projects, including forming a cooperative with other NRV Leicester Longwool breeders to market yarn (via Appalachian Leicester Longwools.)
We offer our own alpaca-Leicester blend yarns and fiber products this year, natural and hand dyed, and our signature sheep- and goat-milk soaps. We have multi-colored eggs from our free-range flock and fruits in-season. New for us is another value added forest product: bio-charcoal and biochar. If you’ve not tried real, natural, unadulterated lump hardwood charcoal, please stop by. There’s a world of difference!
Biochar is a long-lasting soil amendment known for its ability to retain moisture, increase nutrient availability, remove toxins, and increase soil carbon. We make it on-farm from woody debris and have been participating with a network of farm-scale producers nationwide to establish a stronger market for this amazing product. And for each pound of biochar you incorporate in your soils, you’re mitigating about 3 pounds of CO2 greenhouse gasses! [bulk quantities are also available.]
Find us at the Blacksburg Farmers Market on Saturdays June-September!