When Brittney Stowe took a drive on January day, she spotted some Highland cows that she knew she wanted to take pictures of. Little did she know that those cows were part of a much bigger picture that local farm owner Vernon Stout has in mind.
Fold of Liberty Farms is located at 4197 West, 5200 South in Spanish Fork, and according to Stout, while the cows are a main attraction, they serve a much broader purpose in his goal of creating a regenerative farm.
Stout recently acquired 30 acres of land that he said doesn’t have healthy enough soil to have a vibrant farm, but that by bringing in animals like the cows, and growing a variety of things, that it will soon get to a place where the farm will thrive.
“We’re building a regenerative agriculture farm, and what that means is that we are growing hundreds of different things all at the same time, all in the same place,” he explained. “The first thing that we did was we got rid of an invasive species of trees, and have begun to plant different types of grasses that would put lots of bio matter into the soil. We also have legumes and radishes that have big roots that will add a lot of nutrients back into the soil.”
He further explained the goal to add thousands of trees and mushrooms and more grass. He also plans to add hundreds of chickens, sheep, pigs and more Highland cows to do some intensive grazing, along with all the things that animals do to create a healthy ecosystem.
Stout, who has a background in computer science and building companies, said that despite his mom suggesting otherwise, he has long wanted to be a farmer.
“My background is in computer science and building companies, but I have always loved farming, the military and patriotism,” he said. “My mom grew up on a farm, and I wanted to buy her dad’s farm when he passed away, but she told me it was unavailable.”
Stout and his wife own other farmland as well, and he said that their goal with this farm is to make it a place for people to come and learn about animals as well as leave with a sense of patriotism.
“The name of our farm is Fold of Liberty, and it is named this for a couple reasons,” he said. “A Highland herd is a fold, it’s not a herd, and we’re folding everything together. We have military vehicles and equipment to teach people about freedom and patriotism and honoring veterans. Our goal is to have educational tours, youth groups where we have anything from looking at the military stuff to bug collections, to playing on the farm, to helping work. We plan to have hundreds, if not thousands of volunteers a year come out to the farm and help care for it and how to do it themselves. The final thing is to build educational courses and to teach people how to do the same thing on their farm or in their neighborhood – folding it all together.”
Stout said that the farm is very much in the beginning phases, with it only being in its third season. That being said, he has big goals, and hopes to be a fixture and resource in the community.
“Right now, we don’t have a lot of what you would call entertainment activities,” he said. “We do have a lot of things that we would love people to help with while learning how to work and be on the farm and be out in nature,” he said. “We would really love to have some help.”
Stout acknowledges that his dreams are big, but he said he has every intention of making it happen. He also said that he has a very hasty goal of acquiring an additional 20 surrounding acres for his farm.
“We’re looking for investors or people who want to help us buy 20 acres that’s next to us,” he said. “It’s about to go up for sale and we have until October 15 to raise a million dollars. We’ve got several people who are helping figure that out, but otherwise it’s gonna get turned into homes. We prefer that we don’t have homes on the back side of the farm. We really want to retain farmland because we believe it is vital to the environment to do so.”
Find Fold of Liberty Farms on social media, foldofliberty.farm (yep, new cool domain extension) or reached at 801-427-7445.