Saw-whet Farm is a small, first-generation farm in Thorntown, Indiana (Boone County). We focus on traditional, low-impact farming methods and heirloom vegetables. This is your grandmother’s farm.
JoAnna Moskal – Farmer, Chief Sheep Snuggling Officer
JoAnna left her career in non-profit work in 2012 to seek out an even less lucrative profession. She grows the produce, tends to the chickens, sheep, and goats, and revels in getting dirty. She loves meeting people who share her enthusiasm for canning, and is an incurable tomato snob.
Bill Moskal – Baker, Vice President of Building Things
Bill loves pizza. And bread. And bagels. And pretzels. If you can make it with flour, water and yeast, he’s probably obsessed with it. You can often hear Bill muttering about gluten development and protein levels while his grain mill purrs in the background. When he’s not covered in dough, he is likely building something new (chicken coops, greenhouse, wood-fired oven…) or “playing” with spreadsheets devoted to farm energy use and solar power production.
Saw-whet Farm Philosophy and Sustainability Commitment
In the 1940s, the average, U.S. farm grew enough food to feed 19 people. Our goal is to recreate a small, diversified farm of past, focusing on a variety of crops and animals, rather than a large, monoculture field. We don’t use pesticides or chemical fertilizers. Our chickens, sheep, and goats provide the fertilizer for our plants and the vast majority of our work is done without fossil fuels. Bill uses a scythe to cut hay for winter feed, and JoAnna plants vegetables and removes weeds by hand. Our passive solar greenhouse is heated only by the sun, and our farm operations – from the barn, to the electric fences, and the greenhouse, are powered by an off-grid solar system.
We both find joy and benefit in the natural world, so a portion of our farm is – and will remain – a wild haven for flowers, birds, and bees (and bunnies…oh so many bunnies).