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Gardners Bay Farm

Phil O’Donnell & Jimmy Zerella

The Farmers

Phil O’Donnell and Jimmy Zerella run Gardners Bay Farm, a market garden and orchard 10 minutes out of Cygnet. Originally established to supply the restaurant at Port Cygnet Cannery, the pair are now leasing the farm and selling their produce through veg box subscriptions and to restaurants.

He has been farming in the Huon for over 20 years and helped establish the garden at Fat Pig Farm. He enjoyed the process of setting up the garden there, so when the opportunity to do something similar at Gardners Bay came along, it was too good to refuse.

“Phil has forgotten more about farming than I know”, laughs Jimmy. Although it’s fair to say he’s not joking. Phil has always loved the science behind farming, and is passionate about soil biology, utilising several influences, from Permaculture principles to Korean Natural Farming methods, that help build healthy soils and nutrient dense produce.

Jimmy, a chef by trade, moved to Tasmania three years ago, landing work at the Cannery. Staying at the property adjacent to the farm he started helping with the growing and harvesting, and before long he was hooked. He has now fully transitioned from chef to farmer, and between them Phil and Jimmy are hoping that this year the farm will be financially viable for them both.

The Farm

Our focus at Gardners Bay Farm is to encourage soil biology and build healthy soils to grow healthy plants that provide nutrient dense, high quality fruits, veg and livestock.

We aim to deliver an interesting and diverse mix of fresh seasonal food. Our organic, biological farming methods help us to build a resilient, regenerative farm ecosystem that will only improve with time.