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205. Whipporwill Farms SC | Humane Farming and Sustainable Agri-cation| Marissa Paykos | Pineland, South Carolina
25th December 2017 • GREEN Organic Garden Podcast • Jackie Marie Beyer
00:00:00 01:20:53

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Whippoorwill FARMS SC beginnings

Here to tell us about their journey is Marissa Paykos!

Their story starts:

just a few years ago, on Whippoorwill Way in Hardeeville, South Carolina.  An unlikely pair, Marissa Paykos and James Young, then neighbors, realized they shared so much more than just a street address.  They shared a love for all things simple, all things real, all things dictated by mother nature.  Their first dates were spent picking 5 gallon buckets of tomatoes that would later be canned, camping trips to Georgia, South Carolina and Florida State Parks and sitting around many fires on many starry nights talking about the things that made them feel alive while Whippoorwills sang their spring time songs in the night.


Tell us a little about yourself.

kind of a whirlwind

  • lived overseas
  • taught english in Japan and Italy
  • came back in a little over a year
  • move up to Rhode Island
  • lived with my sister

Decided I can’t take the cold

  • came back south

started in Savannah GA

worked in the Hospitality Industry

completely abandoned education

Find Myself

tried to find out who I am

Lived in Savannah

  • culture
  • people
  • scenery


Fast forward a few years

  • met my current husband
  • he and I got together
  • had a baby

now what do we want to do

always a vegetarian

wanted to

always because of animal rights

not a crazy super passionate activist.

Just a personal thing for myself but when I got pregnant I had a lot of issues

Drs needed me to eat more protein

  • chicken
  • fish

abandoned the vegetariansm

unfortunately liked eating meat

told my husband if I’m gonna do this I’m gonna do it right

found a couple of acres outside Savannah

  • completely rural
  • very pregnant
  • getting the land ready
  • slowly started now
  • she’s just over 2

For the last 2 plus years getting this land

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we now have our farm

Whipporwill Farms SC

  • different vegetables
  • meat rabbits
  • horse
  • pleasure
  • lots and lots of veggies

Are you a millennial?

I’m 29.

Oh sure!I found you on instagram right?

I think I had a commented on another podcaster’s Facebook page and you found our FB page….

really active from social media

aside from my farm

I work a regular full time job

I’m a digital account executive for Savannah morning news and I do all the marketing and advertising for their digital platform.

How do you do all that and take care of the farm and your daughter??

I’m not sure, it just happens.

See and people try to tell me millennials are lazy and I totally disagree.

Tell me about your first gardening experience?


if your not familiar

It’s a very common misconception that NJ is all industrial but it is the garden state for a reason because we have a summer that’s not super humid but it does get really cold in the winter

In the summer time you can have wonderful gardens

  • jersey tomatoes 

  • jersey corn famous

My dad was an AP Bio teacher

From the minute I can remember we were always outside.

learning about

  • plants
  • creatures
  • my dad was always teaching us

he and I

I have a sister but she was never really into the gardening

We would

  • rent a roto tiller
  • pick out our plants and we would read and garden

I have pictures and he would make a mud puddle for me and I would roll around a hog and I’d be covered in mud ~ it was great!

Garden Fun with Dad

We would go out to the garden and pick out our veggies

  • tomatoes
  • zucchini
  • eggplants
  • lettuces
  • beans
  • corn

so special to me

I had horses growing up

so I was always around animals always outside

Natural the first time I met my husband was when he was actually my neighbor

he was gardening

I was like wow you have such a green thumb!

he said he loved me right then because I told him what a green thumb he had!

We have that in common and My dad being such an influencer in my love for

growing your own food

not doing anything with meat growing up but garden was so an important part of my childhood

I lived in NJ when I first got out of college, I always remember my parents had cousins in NJ, and we went to Sparta Glen to visit my cousins I can still remember playing with my brother in the creek and we still talk about that trip!

field working where I’m always working with the public 

local businesses

and it’s very clear that your not from here

it’s hard to break the idea of being from the North

even though I’ve been in the south for 10+ years

ideas about northerners

My husband’s been here since the 60’s and they still consider him an outsider I will always be considered an outsider, the kids are always like why do you talk so much. You don’t have much of a southern drawl, you’d think you’d pick that up.

I try to keep very close to my roots

my mom still lives

I’m the only one not in NJ

  • My dad passed away five years ago.
  • he loved coming to South Carolina
  • I’m very much like my Father

I can get away from the cold but Mom and Dad will still visit me

That’s kind of how I ended up in South Carolina.

then Savannah

dad would always come and visit

  • husband was born and raised south south south GA
  • he couldn’t get any more southern if he tried
  • comical

he always makes me laugh of the things he says and the way he says them

I’ll be like can you repeat that? What did you say?

How did you learn how to garden organically?

yeah, I mean we never used any chemicals

I don’t even remember us using miracle grow

it was always

sometimes we would get manure form the horses and mix that in.

Our soil was good healthy soil.

We didn’t have ~ in NJ IDK if there’s a ton of issues with bugs

Bug problems just feed the chickens and pigs at Whipporwill Farms SC

Bug problems

Here in South Carolina, it gets hot pretty quickly

  • never a time that the bugs die off
  • in NJ you are able to, probably get some problems but not like we get with bugs and critters that we get in the south

I talked to Mandy Gerth who talked about how much easier it is to grow here then in Indiana where you get super heat and bugs.

  • tomatoes we get horned worms

for the most part

  • it’s little tiny infestations that you don’t see it happening until it’s kind of taken over everything.


We had a problem this year, Mike brought in this head of broccoli the other day and it was like it was moving! But I went down there and it’s funny it seems like it’s only on that one plant. I have had listeners talk about leaving a plant as a sacrifice, so I’m thinking about just leaving it down there.

I certainly don’t know what plants would be best. We don’t have a lot to hav ea sacrificial plant.

the other thing

we grow in such

when we grow our tomatoes plants

for our first crop, we have 60 plants

Your gonna get some that are successful and some that are not but we still got a ton of tomatoes

I still got tomatoes from the plants that had the infestation

This is the great thing about having a diverse farm is the tomatoes I wasn’t able to eat myself went to the chickens or the hogs

So there is not very much waste on the farm in general

For people who don’t have chickens it’s a bit different but

I probably gave to the animals throughout that harvest probably 4-5 buckets of rotting tomatoes from bugs

We do so many in different areas on the land find what works best…

We didn’t give that head of broccoli to the chickens because we are in fire pre-evacuation mode, so I took the chickens to town but I finally got them because after 4-5 days I couldn’t leave them in that little cage…

Family stories

but it reminds me of this story about my dad, calls us from the train station and says you have to come pick me up because here he is with these 2 giant bags of elephant manure from the circus at Madison Square Garden. He could talk to anyone. I lost my dad just about when you did in 2013.

Tell us about something that grew well this year on Whipporwill Farms SC.

So we had cucumbers that did excellent

  • zucchini that did great
  • peppers
  • jalepeno peppers always grow really well
  • strawberries

that did really well

a lot of our crops did great

Im still getting cucumbers

I’m about to do my

  • fall garden
  • winter  garden

south the weather is so good

started with my planting and seedlings

back in March

so I’ve been going at it for a while

great summer


finishing off in the spring

couldn’t even

let the chickens into the broccoli patch habbits

everyone had a field day

How big is your guys’ Whipporwill Farm?

2 acres

  • which is not big by any means
  • we utilize it really well

We don’t have a big house, we actually live in an RV

  • big deck off the back of the RV
  • guest house for visitors we built

everything is paddock

  • pens
  • barn
  • chicken areas
  • pond for drainage we use as our swimming hole

There is still more land that we can do things with

I do a lot of raised beds for the gardening I really like that because it also gives me the opportunity to move them if I can

do that

  • some areas in the ground we’ll also plant
  • use as much of the property as we can

I’m confused do you live in Savannah or South Carolina?

We live in South Carolina and commute to Savannah, GA.

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  • We don’t have a CSA
  • started selling publicly
  • advertising through fb and fb group
  • people I know through work

buy chickens

vegetbables that we have

haven’t done anything official yet

if I don’t get to butcher chickens


don’t get to pick my plants

Gives myself the freedom to market

  • when I want
  • how I want
  • sell when I’m ready

as we are growing and getting more established I’m looking more for a regular schedule with it…

You’re just amazing, how you do all this, plus your posts are so cool, they suck you in and your captions match what is going on but you do have that digital background…




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