Aloha, my name is Peter. I founded Mountain Sol Farm in 2018 out of a vision to produce food locally and sustainably in Hawaii. The name reflects the farm location in Mountain View, Hawaii as well as my childhood origins in the mountains of Boulder, Colorado. I am a mountain soul! I completed my PhD thesis on tomato breeding at Oregon State University, and since then I have always had a fondness for solanaceous (nightshade) crops: tomatoes, peppers, eggplants and potatoes (to name a few).
I am a trained career scientist, and I bring a science based approach to farm management and food safety practices. Through experimenting with what grows at this elevation and rocky forested soil, I have arrived at a mix of agroforestry, nursery crops, and raised bed/hydroponic vegetable production. All pest control for edible crops is using organically approved products. I am growing a diverse mix of fruit trees (citrus, avocados, exotic fruits) and bananas in the upper story. Understory shrubs and plants (mainly coffee and pineapple) and nitrogen fixing shade trees (ice cream beans) complement the fruit forest. Spice and fruit producing vines like black pepper, vanilla, and dragonfruit climb up the fruit and shade trees.
All this has allowed me to pack in a lot of production into a small area with agriculturally poor soil, while maintaining pockets of native Ohia forest throughout the property. My goal is to minimize external inputs as much as possible. The latest addition to the farm organism has been rotational grazing of poultry (laying hens, muscovy ducks) for fertility and pest control.