Heikkilän Yrttitila / Heikkilä Herbal farm


Huhtisaarentie 3 A, 51720 Rahula
0400 384 737
jussi.saarinen@kotimaisetyrtit.fi
www.kotimaisetyrtit.fi

This farm cultivates and packs Finnish herbs. The farm has 2 hectares of herb fields and the farm shop sells fresh, pure and local herbs and herb mixes, as well as teas and gifts.

Our operations began in winter 2008 with the purchase of agricultural machines. We bought them second-hand from Yrttipaja Oy and also invested in the company’s stock. Come spring it was time to roll up our sleeves. The farmer got to rediscover his latent carpentry skills and put up a greenhouse for growing seedlings. May Day was celebrated by sowing the first boxes of herbs in the new greenhouse. In a matter of weeks, the greenhouse was filled to the brim.

While the seedlings grew, we headed to the fields. That was a Herculean task! The machines needed endless adjustment and the workers needed endless patience, but at last the work was finished, with over a hectare of ground covered and ready, and we felt like kings. However, we were brought back down to earth with a bang when the planting began. Rain poured down and there was no chance to take the machines out in the field, leaving planting by hand as our only option. Luckily relatives came to our help and the weather soon improved, allowing us to use the planting machine. That first summer we planted chives, lemon balm, marjoram, sage, spearmint, basil, Japanese mint, hyssop, Lady’s mantle, peppermint and French tarragon.

The farmer got to do a lot more carpentry over the summer. A space for drying herbs was built in the old dairy and the first year’s harvest was dried there. The plants grew so well that we had to take part of the harvest and dry it at Yrttipaja in Savonlinna.

Recently we have also planted oregano, small-flower hairy willowherb, nettle, parsley and dill. Currently we grow herbs on about four hectares. It is getting to the point where two people cannot do everything. That is why we have hired people from the neighbouring berry farm to help with weeding at busy times. We will see what we come up with for next summer!

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