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Sunday, December 4, 2016

My OA Farm Tour 2: Canaan Hill Farms and Honey Garden

Our last stop for this leg of OA ATI's “KITS (Knowledge, Inputs, Technology Sharing) Journey: 8th Bloggers Event for Organic Agriculture") Farm Tour was the Canaan Hill Farms and Honey Garden

We left La Granja de Reyna at around 130pm and arrived at Canaan Hill Farms and Honey Garden in Caibiran, Calibiran City at 5:00pm. It was another exhausting long ride coming from Leyte made even gloomier by the heavy downpour. The cool weather however lulled me to sleep for almost the entirety of the trip and when I woke up we were almost at Calibiran.

As soon as I stepped out of the van, the spectacular view made the entire trip worth it. It was like a painting come to life or one of those scenic movie backdrops with the trees, and perfectly lined flowers that decorated the place. It’s one of the places you’d go to if you want some peace and quiet, if only it wasn’t raining.

They welcomed us with organic snacks like cassava flakes drizzled with honey and some antioxidant water with blue flowers in it. Since we were the first to arrive, I was able to have a small chat with the owner Lemuel Espinazo, one of the Espinazo brothers.

The Canaan Hill Farms is a 6-hectare uphill organic farm that practices organic farming and is managed by the Espinazo clan, Parents Eduardo and Priscilla and siblings Lemuel, Sandro, Jemmel, Jeffrey, Samuel and Jeruel Espinazo.  They make their fertilizers by gathering their goat's waste which they say is better because it doesnt smell as bad as the waste of other animals.

He told that the farm got its name Canaan from the bible, being the “promised land” that flowed with milk and honey. When their parents bought the farm, they originally thought of planting nothing else but bananas because their father knew nothing about farming as he was a fisherman by profession at the time they bought it.

But through hard work, the farm is almost a paradise of fruit bearing trees with around 100 calamansi trees, mangoes, jackfruit, as well as vegetables. They confessed that the farm became organic by neglect. Aside from the crops, they also raise chickens, goats and sheep.

As much as we'd like to know more about their farming methods. The Espinazo's seemed more eager to share their religious beliefs which they say is the reason why their farm continues to be blessed.

We stayed the night at the Canaan Hill Farm, (we were supposed to go around the farm as soon as everyone arrived but it was still raining heavily we decided to call it a day and just start early the next day. We went uphill to Espinazo's house which was quite far as it took us 45 minutes to go uphill, made more difficult by our luggages, the muddy terrain and it was already getting dark. But thank God, nothing bad happened to us, despite the looooong walk in the rain and mud.

We woke up  at exactly 4am and ready with our cameras hoping to get the best view get a great photo of the sunrise, Unfortunately the weather didnt cooperate and it was dark the whole time.

Disappointed, we packed our things and got ready for breakfast. We toured the farm and took photos of the trees, animals, mangoes that was within reach, and the whole farm terrain. We snapped photos everywhere.

Canaan Hill Farms and Honey Garden is located on the slope of the Mountain in the Uson Barangay Caibiran in Calibiran City. It is open to the public. Visit their Facebook page for more details.

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