The Diekmeyer family opens up about farming in Humboldt
Amy and Fred Diekmeyer, owners of Luna Farm, recently moved into their new 26 acre plot of land in Redcrest that provides organic fruit and vegetables for local community members. The Diekmeyers fell in love with the local climate and became inspired to start their own business.
“Everybody was growing weed around here and we didn’t want to grow weed,” Amy Diekmeyer said. “We wanted to grow something because we were into plants so we just got into growing food.”
Fred Diekmeyer was offered a farming job in his late 20s. During that time he learned organic growing practices and gained experience in harvesting produce. After years of working various jobs, Diekmeyer found to prefer the hard labor, and came to find that farming was the most worthwhile job he’s ever done.
“Humboldt has this great food thing going on, everyone’s interested in nutrition.”
“Working with plants is very rewarding,” Fred Diekmeyer said.
Julie Slater North, a social work lecturer at HSU, attends the Arcata farmers’ market every week with her family and frequently shops at the Luna Farm stand. She browses every stand, but makes an effort to visit Diekmeyer’s stand because she knows they have high quality produce.
“[The farmers’ market] is the highlight of our community,” Slater North said.
Amy Diekmeyer enjoys growing food for her family and community because she loves to cook and knows that she’ll have something good to eat every night.
“Humboldt has this great food thing going on, everyone’s interested in nutrition,” Amy Diekmeyer said.
With students coming to Arcata from all over the country, having a farmers’ market so accessible may feel overwhelming and new. Resources like Oh SNAP can help students apply for CalFresh points that can be used at the Arcata farmers’ market to purchase produce.
“The vast majority of us are thrilled to have students in our community and we want to welcome them here and help them be a part of our community,” Slater North said.
While Fred Diekmeyer prefers summer, because he loves hot crops like tomatoes and hot peppers, nothing is more important than connecting with locals.
“I like to be in the cycle of producing food, it’s a nice connection to society,” Diekmeyer said.