It’s no secret I love spring. There are just too many lovely things happening.

My hibiscus plants are in bloom, strawberries are ripe, and my birthday is just around the corner. What’s not to love? Well, I take that back. I nearly lost that loving feeling this weekend at the Marion Square Farmers Market. Pressed between what had to be record-breaking crowds, Charlestonians were acting all kinds of cranky. Now I confess, I had to quell my inner ginger, the sassy red-head inside me who wanted to tell people off for huffing and puffing and eye-rolling as they squeezed past loaded down moms rolling strollers and ADD dogs sniffing vegetables. But instead, I’m going to step on my soap box here to say this: Relax, Charleston. Next time you’re in the market about to blow your top because someone bumped you while you reached for some kale, take a second to pause and appreciate the fact that the only reason that happened is because we live in an area fortunate enough to have a farmers market (make that nearly a dozen), a market so good it nearly overflows with anxious shoppers scrambling to get area fresh veggies and fruit. What a luxury. What a gift. What a reason to be grateful. That’s the way I prefer to see it, at least. If that doesn’t help, next time you’re at the farmers market, try this: stop and smell the produce. A whiff of those strawberries and there’s no way you won’t feel better. —Kinsey Gidick

Lowcountry Farms

Jon Darling opens his farm to returning army vets
Jon Darling opens his farm to returning army vets Welcome Home

Lewey is a six-day old lamb. He's the first animal I meet on Darling Farm, stumbling around on four gangly legs. Farmer Jon Darling follows behind him, along with Gordon Darling, his father. Gordon picks up the lamb, a brown, tan, white, and black-speckled creature, and holds him tenderly. "This is Lewey. L-e-w-e-y, named after my great uncle," he says. "And this is Penne Pasta," he adds, pointing at a wriggling brown dog at our feet. — Connelly Hardaway


Help farmers by making your voice heard on proposed legislation
Help farmers by making your voice heard on proposed legislation Beyond Bumper Stickers

With the sun shining, bright green plants popping up, and baby animals frolicking in the fields, it would be easy to assume that business is back to normal after the devastation that Lowcountry farmers faced only six months ago with the 1,000-year-flood. But while farmers are looking forward to this season with hope, whether or not the season will deliver remains to be seen. — Nikki Seibert Kelley


The Chef & the Farmer
The Chef & the Farmer How Spade & Clover's turmeric found a home at Xiao Bao Biscuit

John Warren and Josh Walker: a farmer and a chef, respectively, are both creative, optimistic, fair-haired, lean men with names so kinda-sorta-interchangeable, a person almost starts to mix their stories into one brew. And maybe they should. — Vanessa Wolf


These food trucks shop local no matter what road they're on
These food trucks shop local no matter what road they're on Consider the Source

Here at City Paper, we love food trucks. Many an editorial meeting has been derailed by discussions of what trucks have the best bites and where to find them. — Kinsey Gidick


The secretive and slippery world of glass eel fishing
The secretive and slippery world of glass eel fishing Our Lips are Sealed

The night before my scheduled interview with a fisherman, I get a text that reads: "sorry decided not to do article can't help our suffering fishery please don't use my info." When I ask if his buyer will at least speak to me, I'm told he's out too. Another man relays the message that even if I were his brother and writing this article, he wouldn't be a part of it. No one else is willing to talk. — Jessie Hazard


Wishbone Heritage Farms lays quail, duck, chicken, and goose eggs
Wishbone Heritage Farms lays quail, duck, chicken, and goose eggs Bird is the Word

David Gravelin has more work than he can do in a day, but right now, he's picking up straggling hens by the wing and pitching them over a low fence. He does this multiple times a week, and the "ladies" get the hint, flappingly landing unharmed and relatively unruffled on the other side. They're back to pecking for grubs again in a matter of seconds. — Stephanie Burt


Southern field peas enjoy a moment in the spotlight
Southern field peas enjoy a moment in the spotlight The Pea is the Princess

Ah, the lonely pea. Rarely does nature gift us with such sweet, verdant flavor in so small a package. Show anyone a green pea or a spoonful of the little black-eyed veggies, and the recognition is instantaneous. There exists, however, a trove of field peas that have gone underground, familiar for the most part only to classic Southern kitchens and vegetable aficionados. — Jessie Hazard


Darren Sheriff a.k.a The Citrus Guy, is an expert at making stubborn citrus grow
Darren Sheriff a.k.a The Citrus Guy, is an expert at making stubborn citrus grow Sweet and Sour History

"You'll never believe how I got into citrus plants," says Darren Sheriff, a certified professional nurseryman and a Charleston County Master Gardner. "My wife convinced me to take a sad looking Calamondin tree home from a florist sale and nurse it back to life. She said it needed a home. Our second citrus plant was a key lime tree, and after that, I have no idea how it happened." — Katherine Connor


Lowcountry Street Grocery's bus hopes to drive out hunger
Lowcountry Street Grocery's bus hopes to drive out hunger Road Warriors

We hate to say it, but the word Kickstarter often makes us roll our eyes. In today's crowdfund-happy world, every conceivable idea from manufacturing bespoke toothpaste to starting a line of sweaters for alopecia-suffering pandas seems to get an IndieGoGo campaign. — Vanessa Wolf


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