Michelle and Calvin Peuser at Kanga Chemical Free Fruit and Veges at Pillar Valley, which reopened this week after constant heavy rain over the past few months forced them to close for the first time in seven years.
Michelle and Calvin Peuser at Kanga Chemical Free Fruit and Veges at Pillar Valley, which reopened this week after constant heavy rain over the past few months forced them to close for the first time in seven years. Adam Hourigan

Floods set back hardworking duo

A LOT of their neighbours thought the recent floods would be the end of Calvin and Michelle Peuser's attempts to grow chemical-free vegies on their Pillar Valley farm.

On Monday the couple put up the brand new sign at the front gate of their property advertising that Kanga Chemical Free Fruit and Veges were back in business.

It has been a couple of months of back-breaking toil for the couple with the help of their three children.

“A lot of people thought it would be the end of us here,” Calvin said yesterday.

“Yeah. We got a lot of notes and letters from people asking if we were going to open up again,” Michelle added.

Despite the setback, which shut their gate for more than two months, the couple still describe themselves as “lucky”.

“We've been going here for seven years and this is the first time we've ever had to shut the shop,” Calvin said.

But the flood was a huge setback for the couple who have spent most of that time building up the soil in their six-acre plot using a mixture of manures, composts and crushed rock additives.

Calvin resisted the temptation to buy in produce to keep the farm shop open, opting instead to get into his plot and get the farm back in business.

“The rain was just so heavy and constant it battered everything down,” he said.

“Then when the sun came out, the soil just went septic.”

Surprisingly the couple said most of their business is passing trade from tourists.

“We don't get a lot of business from locals,” Calvin said.



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