By Amy Simpson Swiss
Photographed by Molly M. Peterson
"Life is better on the farm.” These words hang over the doorway of the wooden icehouse standing near the center of D.I.G. Farm in North Salem, and the words ring true. Allison Turcan is the founding farmer of D.I.G. Farm, and she uses this sturdy structure, built in the 1800s, as a base of operations. Looking around the cozy room, with its high ceilings and abundant sunlight, evidence of her work is everywhere. Fresh eggs are stacked on the counter in one corner of the room, straight from the chicken coop. Seedlings sprout under grow lights nearby, and freshly picked flowers are scattered here and there. Just outside the back door are long rows of potted plants, herbs and blueberry bushes waiting to go into the ground, and beyond those are the long wooden fences surrounding the growing fields.
Stepping outside, the views surrounding the icehouse are picturesque. Long rock walls stretch up along the hillside into the distance, leading to open meadows and grazing areas. The barn, with its rough-hewn wood beams and rock-walled foundation, has been standing strong for almost two centuries. A long and winding dirt path stretches around the barn, down toward a lovely pond and off into the woods. As we walk this path, Allison tells me about her own long and winding journey leading to this idyllic place, where she is living her dream of running her own organic farm and educating the community about the food she grows, cooks and shares.
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