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About Us

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Swan Creek Farm is a micro farm; we have sported educational opportunities and medicinal herb display gardens in the past, but have been on a three year sabbatical. The next few years will see a great deal of activity as we re-establish display garden, host healing retreats, and re-kindle our herbal educational agenda.

Farm History

The property at Swan Creek Farm was purchased in 2005 after Catherine Browne graduated from Oriental Medical School (2002) and also received a degree at Surry Community College where she attended the enology (wine making and marketing) classes. From 1983-1999 she had been an organic herb farmer. 
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It is estimated that the old barn at Swan Creek Farm was completed before 1920 and the silo before 1940. The farm was part of a larger plot owned by the Swaim family and was approximately 92 acres. They raised cattle and the barn and silo were used to store hay and feed for the cows. The late Mrs. Swaim raised goats that stayed in the barn and there was a strawberry farm stand here that she managed. Her son Phelix reported that she picked strawberries in to her 70's. She lived in the farmhouse on the property almost up until the time that she passed; she was 4 days short of 100 years old.

Moonshine Culture

Phelix Swaim lived to over 90 across the street from Swan Creek Farm; he was a great help around the farm up into his 80's when he would still come by with his tractor to bush hog or till the fields. Phelix shared stories from his youth and from when he was a young man. His family made moonshine and Phelix would "run" it down to Winston-Salem where the workers at a cigarette visit organic herb farmmanufacturing would purchase the illegal "shine". He had many great stories about outrunning the "law"; on one such occasion, when being pursued, he stashed the goods up in the big barn located at Swan Creek Farm. He did not realize that his father was haying that day, and his boxes of moonshine were buried under thousands of pounds of hay; he wasn't able to retrieve it until the next spring.

Today our farm is surrounded by wineries, but we are infused in a legacy of moonshine culture here at Swan Creek Farm; in the past the rolling foothills provided plenty of places to hide stills and Swan Creek provided the necessary water for distilling spirits. Additionally, the corn often grows to 8 feet tall in the rich clay soil of the area providing mash for the shine. Up until a few years back, Nascar racing legend Junior Johnson was our neighbor just up the road a half a mile.

Dr. Catherine Browne's Full Bio


 

organic farming logoCarolina Farm Stewardship providing education and support to organic farmers and sustainable farms in the southeast.

 

organic herb farming

WWOOF.org (World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms) matching volunteers wanting to learn more about organic farming with farms that need help.

 

 

 medical herbalist guildThe American Herbalist Guild, an organization of professional herbalist helping to raise the standards of medical herbalism through higher standards of education in the USA.

 

The NC Herb Associations providing education to herbal hobbiest and working to promote nc-herb-associationthe awareness of herbalism in North Carolina.

 

 

 

herbs grown in north carolinaWe are a certified North Carolina Farm through the NC Agricultural program Goodness Grows! 



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