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18 November, 2020

New lychee love

When Craig Werleman and his wife Ellen Ritchie decided to buy their very first farm at Koah about six weeks ago they knew they were in for a steep learning curve.

By Phil Brandel

(L-R) Angela Nason from Tablelands to Tabletop, Ellen Ritchie and Craig Warleman at their newly bought Lychee farm


When Craig Werleman and his wife Ellen Ritchie decided to buy their very first farm at Koah about six weeks ago they knew they were in for a steep learning curve. One question they didn’t know the answer to was, what to do with all of the Lychees that were coming into season?

Craig and Ellen bought the farm after looking for a tree change after moving up from Cairns.

This is their first time owning and running a farm and they bought the property after looking at properties across the Tablelands for the past 3 years.

Craig said they brought the property due to its amazing soil.  

“We want to do multi-cropping as we would like to know where our food is coming from,” he said

“We are interested in learning about food production.

“We want to be self-sufficient and we want to learn as much as we can about how to grow our own food and also learn about sustainable farming, permaculture and agriculture.”

The property has about 160 lychee trees as well as mangos and macadamias. One problem that Craig discovered after moving onto the property was that Lychees were coming into season and they didn’t know what to do with.

“We will have about a tonne of lychees to move,” he said.

“We have only been here for six weeks, we are still unpacking and fixing the house up so we weren’t sure what to do.

A friend recommended that they Call Angela Nason at Tablelands to Tabletop to help sell their fruit.

Angela said she was glad to help the new farmers out. ”They are new to farming, they admit that they have zero experience in lychee farming and the fruit trees that they inherited would be ready for harvest in about 10 days,” she said.

“So they've asked me to come in and help them.”

Last week Angela put a post up on social media seeking expressions of interest for people wanting to buy the Lychees.
“We had over 500 people put their hand up with was roughly equivalent to 6 tonnes of Lychees,” she said

“Unfortunately we won’t be able to supply everyone.

“We had a similar situation with Tomatoes a few weeks ago when we helped moved over a tonne of tomatoes in two weeks.”

Craig said he was grateful for the help and hopped that Angela could continue to help sell their produce in the future.

“We were looking for someone to help us with sales and not rip us off, so it’s great that we found Angela.”

 



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