By LYDIA BERGLAR
The Mobley family is enjoying a breath of fresh air as they grow blueberries, sell flowers, and invite others to experience the beauty of Fox Mountain Farm. Clyde, Kendra, and their three children especially appreciate life on the farm after living in the suburbs of Atlanta for many years.
Located at 145 Fox Mountain Road in Rising Fawn, the farm sits on a secluded piece of property at the base of Fox Mountain. Guests drive under the interstate bridge, follow a gravel road, and pass a pond before reaching the fields of flowers ready to be picked. The Mobleys have plans to add signage to help guide visitors.
The Mobleys and Clyde’s parents, Daniel and Lisa, purchased the property not long before COVID-19. They then sold their home and floor/carpet care business in Atlanta and officially moved to Dade County.
Kendra explained that they were both eager to leave Atlanta and make a home on their own land. Clyde said, “Henry County on the southern side of Atlanta used to be a really small town, like Dade County, but Atlanta grew and swallowed it up. The final straw for me was when it took 30 minutes to go just three miles.”
Kendra added that she grew up in a small town in California on an orchard. “I want our kids to grow up in a similar environment, and we love it here.” The couple appreciates the little details about small town life, such as the Rising Fawn post office knowing them by name.
The farm initially started with blueberry bushes that customers will be able to pick berries from themselves, but these take several years to mature. While waiting for the blueberries to be ready for consumers, the Mobleys wanted to get the word out about the farm.
Clyde said, “We’re trying to get people out here and start building up our business so when the blueberries are big enough to pick, people will already know about us.”
Kendra has long enjoyed growing flowers, and she plans to grow them regardless of the farm’s enterprises. However, selling flowers was a perfect way to spread the name of Fox Mountain Farm and test people’s interest.
They planted zinnias, dahlias, marigolds, sunflowers, and several smaller varieties such as globe amaranth this year. They opened the farm to the public toward the end of June, and the “trial run” season has already proven successful.
Clyde said, “We’re really surprised by how quickly people have been starting to show up. We didn’t know what kind of feedback we would get, if there would be a lot of interest in the flowers, but there is and it’s exciting.”
Kendra added, “Everyone’s been great about sharing that they’ve been here on Facebook, and the local farmers here support each other.”
The farm is currently open Fridays and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and by appointment in the afternoons and on other days.
Visitors can purchase flowers by the bucket or with a subscription. For a flat $25 fee, guests can fill a bucket with their desired flowers. The subscription costs $100 and lasts through the end of the season. With the subscription, you can pick $20 worth of flowers each week (paying for any additional flowers). Kendra said, “This way, people can invest in our farm and benefit from it too.”
The season’s end and next season’s beginning depend on the weather. The Mobleys plan to sell flowers until the first frost. Kendra explained, “We don’t know exactly what to expect with this being our first year, but we’ve staggered our planting so we should get a longer bloom. They’re all annuals except for the dahlias, which are perennials. A lot of it is learning as we go. We’re going to start much sooner next year.”
Clyde added, “We’ve had a few growing pains, but it’s a lot of fun figuring everything out. We use landscaping fabric to help with weed control, but right after we first put it down, strong winds came through and ripped it up. We’re also going to buy row covers.”
One issue is keeping deer away from the blueberries and fruit trees. Deer ruined some fruit trees, but the Mobleys plan to replant these. They also plan to add blackberries (with several bushes already planted), expand their produce garden, and sell honey from their bees.
The Mobleys use organic methods, meaning organic fertilizers and pesticides only and no Round-Up or pre-emergent. Clyde said, “We want to know that what we’re putting on our own food is good for us and for our kids.”
Other plans for the future include growing peonies and more sunflowers. The Mobleys envision a sunflower field that could be used as a photo shoot area. They have a koi pond and plan to build a deck to better feed and view the fish. They also make and sell freeze dried candy, and they will have a booth at the Tractor Supply farmers market on August 19.
Kendra said, “I’m hoping we can add a little bit more every year and become one of those farms where you want to bring the whole family and spend the day.”
They envision a shop where products from the farm can be sold and a canopy near the flower fields where guests can arrange and tie their bouquets. While work on a parking area next to the field is in progress, the Mobelys currently shuttle guests in a utility vehicle.
To contact the farm, call 678-615-5848, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or message them on Facebook (under the name “Fox Mountain Farm”). The farm doesn’t have a website yet, so Facebook is the best way to see updates about hours, special events, and what’s currently for sale.