Our Story

 

begins on Monacan farm along the James River in Powhatan County, Virginia where in 1985 Jo and Rob Pendergraph started Manakintowne with an herb and vegetable garden next to a horse barn, with lots of well composted manure. Once we tasted the difference fresh herbs and fresh produce made in our own cooking, we knew we were onto something any good chef would appreciate. Our first customer was a creative and appreciative chef, and our customers continue to be the creative chef and the home cook who demand the best. What began as a part time backyard pursuit has evolved into the Manakintowne of today. With our dedicated staff, we grow on 21 acres in central Powhatan for chefs and markets throught Central Virginia, from Charlottesville to Tidewater.

 

 

 

How We Grow

 

Our mission as farmers is to be good stewards of the land that sustains us and to provide people with a delicious, healthy and beautiful product. We recognize that the health of our soil underlies the success of our efforts. That is why we use sustainable farming methods, such as crop rotation, cover cropping, composting, mulching with compostable materials such as paper and hay, hand-tending and harvesting, and row covers and careful timing for pest control and season extension. Most of our crops grow in beds 100' by 4' or smaller, so each bed and each crop gets attention according to its needs. Our farm has a rolling terrain. We plant in a series of gardens, buffered by native grasses, windbreaks and wildlife habitat. 

 

 

about Manakintowne

Manakintowne is a family farm and boutique produce company in Central Virginia, specializing in all kinds of salad greens, fresh culinary herbs, edible flowers and small batch seasonal specialty produce. We cater to the professional chef. Chefs give us inspiration and set the standards for how we operate our business. Our produce is also available at a limited number of retail outlets in Central Virginia. We pride ourselves on the quality of our products,  and our reliable personal service to all our customers.

Our story began on Monacan farm along the James River in Powhatan County, where in 1985 Jo and Rob Pendergraph started Manakintowne Specialty Growers with an herb and vegetable garden next to a horse barn, and access to good sun and well composted manure. Once we tasted the difference fresh herbs and fresh produce made in our own cooking, we knew we were onto something any good chef would appreciate. Our first customer was a creative and appreciative chef. What began as a backyard pursuit has evolved into the Manakintowne of today. Today, the dedicated staff of Manakintowne produces on 21 acres, in the field, high tunnels and greenhouses, still in central Powhatan, not far from where we began. In 2006, VDACS certified our farm kitchen, allowing us to take our produce into the prep stage. In 2015, in response to the phenomenal success of Central Virginia's food scene, we established Virginia Growers LLC to expand local offerings to our customers and provide a way in to the restaurant business for other Virginia farmers. 2019 marks our 34th year, and we find ourselves full of gratitude for the relationships we have made along the way, with our customers, with those who have come to the farm to be a part of the team, some for a season, some for a decade or more, and with our fellow farmers

 

 

 

How we grow

Our mission as farmers is to be good stewards of the land that sustains us and to provide people with a delicious, healthy and beautiful product. We recognize that the health of our soil underlies the success of our efforts. That is why we use sustainable farming methods, such as crop rotation, cover cropping, composting, mulching with compostable materials such as paper and hay, hand-tending and harvesting, and row covers and careful timing for pest control and season extension. Most of our beds are 100' by 4' or smaller, so each bed and each crop gets attention according to its needs. Although we have not been through an organic certification process, we use only natural fertilizers and OMRI approved botanically derived pesticides, and we use them sparingly, as we build our soil organically. We grow year round in greenhouses, high tunnels and under cover in the field.  Wildlife habitat, pollinators and vegetative buffers

.are important components of the farm

 

 

 

 

What we grow  Every season, we grow a mix of our tried-and-true gourmet and heirloom specialties along with trials of newfound varieties, which may or may not earn a place on our list of offerings. Our most popular year-round selections are our Manakintowne salad mix, fresh cut herbs, baby salad greens, shoots and micro greens, and edible flowers. Farming is not an exact science, and ours like all farms is subject to the whims of Mother Nature. To balance supply and demand of our selections seamlessly for our restaurant customers, we source from other growers at times, always giving priority to Virginia growers of similar philosophy. Contact us if this describes you! Seasonally, we grow everything from fresh coriander, perilla and Aji Amarillo peppers to baby fennel, black Spanish radishes and zucchini blossoms. We save seed from several of our best performing crops, such as Espellette peppers, heirlooms and dill