Introducing Kiawah River Farm
Life is sweet at Kiawah River, and it tastes even sweeter with the bounty of fresh flavors growing at Kiawah River Farm.
Welcome to Charleston’s first agrihood! An agrihood is a neighborhood that fosters farm-to-table living in a cooperative environment. Kiawah River Farm is a working farm partnership with local Johns Island farmers complete with goats, beef cattle, chickens, bees, produce and flower fields. We strive to preserve the sea islands’ traditions and history, including its agricultural past.
Residents of Kiawah River are eligible to participate in Kiawah River Farm’s Community Shared Agriculture (CSA) program. The CSA offers a subscription to receive weekly deliveries from the harvests of our community farmers.
Access to local food sources allows our residents to sustain local farming, support the local economy, and embrace a healthy lifestyle. From our dedicated farmers and herdsmen to our busy honeybees, we invite you to meet our hardworking team members who are bringing the Kiawah River Farm to life.
Our 100-acre working farm is managed by Oliver, Ike and Earl Freeman, who are fourth-generation farmers on the property. The Freeman brothers grow an array of crops throughout the year, including melons, squashes, butter beans, tomatoes, and bell peppers. Freeman Farms’ produce is sold at their nearby open-air market open from April until September.
With more than 60 years of experience, farmer and Johns Island native Sidi Limehouse runs the 15-acre Rosebank Farms at Kiawah River Farm. Limehouse is an expert in local conservation and sustainability initiatives and was the region’s first farmer to grow heirloom tomatoes. He currently harvests an assortment of produce including carrots, lettuce, cabbage, okra, watermelon, artichokes and tomatoes. His team also sows a large selection of seasonal flowers, including zinnias and hydrangeas.
As its name suggests, The Goatery at Kiawah River Farm is an artisan goat dairy specializing in the production of high-quality, handmade goat cheese. The organization doubles as a sanctuary, which provides goats with a forever home. Run by herdsman Danny Sillivant and cheesemaker Chris Maher, The Goatery supplies its dairy products to restaurants across the Lowcountry, including Husk, Charleston Grill and Sorghum & Salt.
Three Gates Cattle Company
Kiawah River’s pastures are grazed by Belted Galloway cattle from locally owned Three Gates Cattle Company. The organic beef cattle are grass-fed on 18 acres of shaded, creek-side pasture while two full-time employees provide the highest possible standard of care in accordance with the Global Animal Partnership’s 5-Step Animal Welfare Rating. The cattle raised at Kiawah River will remain on the pasture throughout their life cycle, resulting in healthier, leaner beef without any added hormones.
Kiawah River’s Beehives
The abundant produce and flower varietals grown at Kiawah River Farm create an ideal surrounding for every honeybee’s dream hive. Kiawah River’s beekeeper, Chuck Hudspeth, maintains six hives around the community, each housing up to 50,000 bees, resulting in honey that tastes like summertime all year ‘round. In the fall and summer, Kiawah River honey holds a special blend of the flowering plants in the area. In the fall, Lowcountry honeybees gather goldenrod and other wildflowers while the spring attracts bees to flowering plants and ornamentals such as lantana and confederate jasmine.
The meadow of flowers along Kiawah River Drive are just beginning to bloom. As spring arrives, the flowers are waking up from winter such as the natives like blackberry, corral bean and our local vines. In Jacks Pond, one of our aquatic plants, the Sagittaria, is also blooming. Next time you walk our trails, identify a few of our indigenous flowers and get to know the different plants that blossom in spring.
Kiawah River residents can fully embrace outdoor living and the farm-to-table lifestyle our community offers with fresh, seasonal produce at their doorsteps to cook healthy meals with ease and convenience. We can’t wait to watch the vision of our agrihood to continue to unfold at Kiawah River Farm!