USF Garden Project

Field Trip: Farmer’s Market
October 13, 2008, 9:32 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags:

For this blog, we have decided to post one of the group member’s written field trip reports for each field trip taken.  Our first field trip/field trip report assignment was to go to a farmer’s market in San Francisco….

Field Trip Report (Ferry Building Embarcadero Farmer’s Market):


    “Today (9/9) I went to the farmer’s market next the Ferry Building in San Francisco’s Embarcadero.  I arrived during the last hour of the market and came across Chue’s Farm Fresh Vegetables, a vegetable stand from Fresno, CA (just under 200 miles from San Francisco.  As the vegetable stands at this particular farmer’s market were scare, I decided to stop and talk to the farmer at Chue’s.   I learned which vegetables are meant to be grown in the fall and winter growing seasons in both San Francisco and Fresno.  I learned that eggplants are suitable to be planted in the fall and winter growing seasons in both parts of California; however, a particular species of eggplant (the Chinese eggplant) can only be planted in Fresno area.  I also learned that herbs such as mint are very suitable for the fall and winter growing seasons.

            In terms of criticisms, I was surprised to learn not only that many of the farmers with stands at the Embarcadero Farmer’s Market were from 200-plus miles away from San Francisco, but also that Chue’s Farm Fresh Vegetables in particular uses synthetic fertilizers (with “natural compounds”).  As much as I don’t have a specific knowledge of the effect of chemical fertilizers on plants and the environment, I know enough to know that these fertilizers affect the plant’s chemistry as well as the soil and ecology of surrounding areas.  I think these are interesting aspects of the Ferry Building Farmer’s Market because most people assume that all farmers’ market food is very localized and chemical-free.  Now I know to ask the farmer explicitly.  For my vegetable to be planted in our garden, I chose bok choy on the basis that it was not currently growing in the garden and the fact that the vegetable is highly suitable for the fall and winter growing season.  Also, it is a common staple is soups and stir fries-two of my favorite meals!”

-Elyssa Bairstow

For more information regarding farmer’s markets in the San Francisco Bay Area please go to