Den Hill Permaculture:
Ben Harder and his team at Den Hill Permaculture strive to not only provide sustainably grown traditional produce and fruit but also to bring an unusual mix of specialty crops to Blacksburg residents. Some of the crowd favorites include chemical-free raspberries, baby leaf salad greens, shiitake and oyster mushrooms, cherry and grape tomato varieties, purple potatoes, specialty peppers, beans, and more! Ben and the crew also brew kombucha with local fruit and ingredients under their new subsidiary, Tea Beast Kombucha. They use herbs from their farm like holy basil (Tulsi), lavender, lemon balm, chamomile, rose and more to create the delicious and nourishing health drink. Some popular flavors include Ginger Spice Peach, Hibiscus Lemonade, Honey Hops, and Turmeric Lime.
Ben and his wife, Jackie, are also working together to combine their love of foraging, farming, and herbalism to create botanical skin care, essential oil candles and homegrown tea offerings. All of the products they create feature wild harvested and homegrown medicinal plants, found under a second subsidiary they call Seeing Stone Botanicals.
As a native of Blacksburg, Ben started Den Hill Permaculture with Jackie in 2012 as he worked on completing his degree in Environmental Horticulture and Civic Agriculture from Virginia Tech. His farm is founded on the principles of permaculture, which is a sustainable ecological design system with a philosophy of working with, rather than against, nature. Ben has taken many ideas and techniques from permaculture practices and is applying them to a farm scale.
To keep up with their day to day and to learn about Ben’s cutting edge farming practices, follow them on Instagram and Facebook;