A worker-owned market garden in the northern catskills, growing a full range of produce on just under an acre
Somewhere out in the Catskills foothills - just a few miles west of the Hudson River - three young men are stooped over, deftly harvesting their respective bed of baby greens. With a morning mist hovering above the rich clay soil, totes of delicate arugula, kale and spinach fill and are quickly trekked to a cooler which will keep them at peak freshness. One of the men sneaks a small handful of arugula with a smile - a midmorning snack and the fruit of their Spring labors.
Nathan, Rick and Quintin - the founders and sole employees of Climax Cooperative - are on a mission to build a rolling piece of upstate land, a relic of the area's dairy industry, into a small-scale produce operation. Founded in 2016, the one acre co-op is able to produce over twenty-five different vegetables, each the delicious result of their pride for the craft.
Climax Cooperative's methods emphasize intensive planting and minimal mechanical intervention - practices championed by market gardening gurus Eliot Coleman and JM Fortier. Treating the soil as a foundation to be nurtured rather than a resource to be depleted strengthens the symbiosis between farm and farmer with a foresight rarely seen in the industry today.
Catch Nathan, Rick and Quintin at farmers markets this summer in Coxsackie, Hastings, Larchmont and Irvington!
Nathan - (518) 424-9189
Rick - (845) 568-7268
Quintin - (812) 343-4392
967 State Route 81 Climax, NY 12042
Weds. Coxsackie 4–7pm
Sat. Larchmont 8:30am–1pm Sat. Hastings 9am–1pm
Sun. Irvington 9am–1:30pm
The freshest produce you've ever tasted.
Below is our Full range of goods. Color denotes what's in season.
Born and raised in Climax, NY, the prodigal son returned to lay his own stake. An Oxbridge dropout, Nathan excommunicated himself from the myopia and self-indulgence that is academia and decided to dirty his hands in a career more fertile. Prior experience on a successful farm taught him the nuance of intensive, handcrafted growing and the confidence to work the land he grew up on.
Following the long line of Thoreau-types before him, Nathan wears proudly his independence from Babylon – take note his flowing locks. And though Climax Cooperative may truly be his Walden, Nathan couldn't fully abandon his philosophical leanings. Never simply a farm, the co-op is statement of politics, a weapon of proud defiance against destructive, hegemonic ag.
Rick Smith knows what peace is - it’s a broadfork and in your hands and a good podcast in your ear.
Born-and-raised in Cornwall, NY, Rick studied agriculture at Cornell and in Lyon, France, before working for a spell at an organic certifier in California. Feeling as though he’d prefer farming to just classifying farms, Rick headed back east to take a job at a market garden in the southern Catskills. Rick and Nathan were cabin mates at the farm, and at the end of the season Nathan convinced Rick to put his hand in the huddle.
At the farm Rick plays both offense and defense. His partners will proudly tell you he's the only machinery Climax Cooperative uses on a regular basis.
Raised in Southern Indiana, Quintin took the scenic route to a life in farming. Midway through a bachelor’s in English Lit at Indiana U, Quintin did year abroad at Oxford, where he met Nathan. Having been recently learned in the ideals of Permaculture, the two frequently discussed achieving a more fulfilling lifestyle amidst the malaise of modernity.
More recently Quintin held a stint as a brand designer in Chicago, but the windy city had him feeling askew. At the will of an eastward gust, this hayseed was carried up to New York. For Quintin the farm is an untapped well of creativity - the soil rich with artistic potential.
Wednesdays 4–7pm / May–october
Our people. There's really no better feeling than providing fresh produce to our friends and neighbors. The Coxsackie Farmers Market is a hidden gem in the mid-Hudson Valley, in full view of the riverfront. Free weekly classes and musical acts make this market a surprisingly lovely place to spend an evening. It's wonderful to watch our local market continue to flourish, and we are thrilled to be a part of the growing interest in healthy food!
Saturdays 9AM–1pm / june–NOVEMBER
One of two Saturday markets in Westchester, Hastings is a premiere area market celebrating the full range of local produce, meats and prepared goods. Wonderfully managed and loyally attended, it is the creme de la creme of New York farmer's markets and we are honored to be able to provide our veggies to this community! Located just blocks from the train station, it is easily reachable from anywhere along the Hudson line.
Larchmont Farmers Market
Saturdays 8:30AM–1pm / May–NOVEMBER
Our other Saturday market, again voted one of Westchester County's favorites, Larchmont is a new addition for us this season. A staple in the Down to Earth market series, the Larchmont Farmers Market has a wonderful array of vendors. And with weekly musical acts, it is a wonderful place to spend a sunny, summer morning. Stop by to learn more about the farm and taste the veggies we're so proud to provide!
Sundays 9AM–1:30pm / june–NOVEMBER
Our sole Sunday market and yet another one of Westchester's finest, Irvington is just a short train trek from the city. Irvington is a testament to what a great farmers market can be - friendly vendors, fresh goods and happy customers make for an invaluable Sunday morning. We owe so much of the success of our first season to the Irvington Farmers Market and the community that supports it. And we're happy to be back for season two!