Kawanui Farm Is The Family Home Of Gerry Herbert & Nancy Redfeather
Founded in 1998, Kawanui Farm is a 1.2 ac. mini-farm at the 1,450 ft. elevation nestled between Honalo and Kainaliu in the mauka (mountain) area of Kona on the Island of Hawai’i. The surrounding area is home to many families who have been ranching in Kona for generations. Gerry farmed in Mendocino from 1971-1995, and Nancy began growing home gardens in 1973 and has lived in Kona since 1978.
Our vision to build Kawanui Farm started 40 years ago. Our first intention was to offer workshops and farm experiences for the community that would contribute to deepening connections with the ‘Aina and building food self-reliance and sustainable organic systems for Hawaii's home gardens. That work spanned the years 2000-2017.
Our intention today is find table grape varieties that thrive in subtropical regions, create a booklet on what we have learned and in 2023 begin to provide some scion wood. We will also be continuing our variety trials on the everyday foods that we all need. We hope that our variety trials will lead to seed production for the Hawai'i Seed Growers Network online Marketplace. www.hawaiiseedgrowersnetwork.com
Nancy retired in 2016 from a decade of work at The Kohala Center where she directed the Hawai'i Island School Garden Network (HISGN), the Ku’Aina Pa School Learning Garden Teacher Training program, the Hawai’i Public Seed Initiative (HPSI), and the Hawai'i FoodCorps Program. She continues her work as a seed grower and Outreach and Education Coordinator for the Hawaii Seed Growers Network. She has been an educator for the past 50 years. Our son Travis lives in Kona and is a fisherman and grower also.
Gerry is a farmer, builder, and agricultural historian.
He has a degree in Viticulture and International Agriculture from UC Davis. Soil health, developing low input systems, trialing varieties that will feed us as we adapt to climate change are all part of his current focus.
Our current work centers around SARE Table Grape Trials for Hawai'i, growing seed for the Hawai'i Seed Growers Network online Marketplace, writing agricultural Blogs, and feeding our family from the land.
We are also conducting trials of short day onion varieties, garlic, OP broccoli, lettuce, beans, and flowers. Climate change is here, and for Kona that means MUCH more rain. Farmers and Gardeners everywhere will need to adapt to the changes that we are seeing daily.
"Great Things Take Time"
As Gerry says, “Great things take time.” Our ongoing vision is to develop a truly sustainable, organic family mini-farm that creates a living partnership with nature, feeds our family, and lives with the cycles of the land, the seasons, and the ever-changing climate. The farm is an example of a small family homestead that grows what the family likes to eat, recycles all organic material from the land and at this time has very few off-island inputs. Below is an arial photo of Kawanui a decade ago. Much has changed, but the possibilities for one acre and independence remain as viable as ever!
Check out "Growing Table Grapes"
In Menu above
"Kawanui is one of the most beautiful examples
of a sustainable homestead on Hawai'i Island.
A botanical garden of beauty & food ." Lyn Howe