About Local Food

Qualla Berry Farm is part of a loose community of growers and marketers throughout western NC who are seeking to provide locally grown food to people who live and visit  the mountains. We are helping to develop ways to keep our rural land in agricultural production. We are listed in the Local Food Guide produced by the Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project. For more about U-Pick farms, tailgate markets, and community supported agriculture growers, see their website: www.buyappalachian.org

News and Blog

Karen and John's Blogs
Posted 11/15/2015 9:04pm by John Clarke & Karen Hurtubise.

Today it appears we have sold out of the baby ginger crop for this year! We have enough in the rows to fill the orders already placed. Big thank you to everyone of this year's customers. Y'all rock! And now...on to turmeric for the next two weeks. We will probably sell out by the weekend and deliver all the orders by Thanksgiving. So make your online order. Let us know how you have discovered the benefits of using fresh and fresh frozen turmeric throughout the year.


Big Kahuna ginger

Posted 10/15/2015 9:43pm by John Clarke & Karen Hurtubise.

Hi Folks-

Our ginger harvest is ongoing and we thank everyone who has placed an order. Our new order form on the website (under the Ginger and Turmeric tab) is working well and hopefully it's easy for you to use.

Everyone is invited to our Open House at the farm this Saturday October 17 from 12 noon to 4 PM. We will have pending ginger orders ready and will be showing off our amazing plants in the hoophouses. At 2PM Karen will teach a mini-class on growing turmeric and ginger in containers year round. We have starts potted for those of you who would like to grow your own.

Hope to see you then! Tell your friends! Feel free to print and post the flyer where you work or play.


John & Karen

Qualla Berry Farm

3274 Qualla Rd

Hayesville, NC 28904





Posted 10/10/2015 11:53pm by John Clarke & Karen Hurtubise.

Hi Folks-

The first Fresh Baby Ginger has come out of the ground for the 2015 season!

We are ready to take Ginger orders and new for this year we have an Order Form! Please see our website, www.quallaberryfarm.com and find the order form under the Ginger and Turmeric tab. If you sent us a pre-order email we'd still love it if you will submit an order form. For 2015 we are pricing both the Ginger and the Turmeric at $16.00/lb for our main crop varieties, the Yellow Hawaiian Ginger and the Red Hawaiian Turmeric. We have limited quantities of some other new varieties which will be priced at harvest time.

Also, we will be holding an Open House at the Farm, 3274 Qualla Rd, Hayesville, NC 28904, from 12 noon to 4 PM on Saturday Oct 17. We will have ginger and turmeric plants for sale for those of you who would like to grow your own (you will need an indoor protected space for this). Karen will offer a mini-class on growing organic ginger and turmeric at 2 PM.

Thanks and we are looking forward to connecting with you and bringing you these great crops! Please help us spread the word about ordering our fresh baby ginger and turmeric by sending friends and family to our website.

We expect to begin harvesting Fresh Turmeric in early November.


Karen Hurtubise and John Clarke

Qualla Berry Farm

3274 Qualla Rd

Hayesville, NC 28904

email: jkqualla@frontier.com

website: www.quallaberryfarm.com

Facebook: Qualla Berry Farm


Posted 9/10/2015 9:59pm by John Clarke & Karen Hurtubise.


We write to let you know that our turmeric and ginger plants have been growing well in our two hoophouses this season and we expect to have a good quantity of both available for sale this fall. Fresh Baby Ginger will begin harvesting in October and Fresh Turmeric in November. All summer we have been enjoying the intoxicating smell of the ginger foliage when we work in the hoophouse weeding and watering! It's exciting to be coming to the season when we get to share the fruits of our labor.

Our main hoophouse, August 2015

Remember that we only harvest in the fall but both kinds of rhizomes freeze well so you will want to get a year's supply and freeze enough turmeric and ginger for the year! We have had a lot of feedback from our 2013 and 2014 customers that they love the produce and find both culinary and health benefits from these amazing plants. We are drinking ice cold half & half turmeric/ginger tea with lemon every day this summer and loving it!

For 2015 we are trying some new varieties: black, white, yellow, BKK, and Ka Chai Dom turmeric and Bubba Blue and Khing Yai Ginger. We will have smaller quantities of these varieties for this year. As in previous years, our main crops will be Yellow Hawaiian Ginger and Red Hawaiian Turmeric.

If you would like to place a pre-harvest order you may email us at jkqualla@frontier.com. (We much prefer email over phone orders as it leaves us a good record of your orders). We will be emailing updates as we begin harvesting.

If you are receiving this email you are on our turmeric/ginger mailing list. If you know anyone who would like to receive our updates they may send us an email to be added to the list. Please also see our website, www.quallaberryfarm, which has an updated home page and some new blog entries and photos posted in the gallery.

We look forward to the Fall and to being in touch with all of you!


Karen Hurtubise and John Clarke

Qualla Berry Farm

Hayesville, NC 


Posted 9/4/2015 11:53am by John Clarke & Karen Hurtubise.

Its Labor Day weekend and the turmeric and ginger are growing well. Fall is in the air and spider webs cover the fields of goldenrod, Joe Pye weed, and all kinds of yellow asters. John and I notice the hoophouse plants really put on growth mid August into September as if they realize the light is diminishing and its time to get their mojo on for Fall into winter.  Turmeric and ginger are tropical perennials being grown in our mountains where frost, cold and snow are an upcoming reality. This fall you will have an opportunity to buy turmeric and ginger starts and grow your own pots of delicious spice. I will teach several classes this month and will be posting and emailing the time and dates to everyone interested in what we have learned this past four years about turmeric and ginger. Stay tuned.

Posted 2/26/2015 6:22pm by John Clarke & Karen Hurtubise.

Winter Wonderland today. John was up last night clearing the heavy snow off the hoophouse and greenhouse. It's been a cold and snowy couple of weeks on and off. We love the beauty and quiet. Last week we heard the first peent, peent, peent of the woodcock birds. Their mating calls and courtship flight dance are the beginning sign of spring on the way. Early daffodil buds are up, yellow winter aconite and white snowdrops been blooming for three weeks. Loving winter peace and slower pace...reading seed and supply catalogs, making plans to teach garden classes this year of 2015.  Yes, new energy is rising.

February 26th, 2015 Hoophouse

Posted 12/5/2014 10:02am by John Clarke & Karen Hurtubise.

Dear Friends,

The final week of our turmeric and ginger harvest season has arrived!

Our Fresh Ginger is sold out for the season. We are currently still harvesting Fresh Turmeric and taking orders and delivering until we sell out. Contact us (by email at jkqualla@frontier.com) as soon as possible if you would like to place an order. Our Fresh Turmeric is priced at $15/lb and we have mostly been selling 1 and 2 pound bags.

On Sunday December 7, John will be at the hoophouse from 11AM to 3PM for those who would like to come pick up turmeric at our farm. Karen will be taking orders to the Fireside Sale at the Folk School for people who would like to pick it up there (time TBA). Sunday may well be our last day of turmeric sales for the season! We will fill orders first come first serve  until we sell out so email us today (Friday) to reserve yours.


John Clarke and Karen Hurtubise

Qualla Berry Farm, Hayesville, NC


on Facebook: Qualla Berry Farm

On Pinterest: Turmeric Tales by Karen Hurtubise


Posted 11/14/2014 7:29pm by John Clarke & Karen Hurtubise.

First freshly harvested turmeric crop, November 14, 2014

Dear Friends,

We're very happy to announce that our turmeric harvest has begun for 2014! And we still have some fresh baby ginger.

To celebrate we are holding an Open Hoophouse at the farm on Saturday, November 15 from 11AM to 4PM. You are invited to see our growing and harvesting operation and John will have both fresh turmeric and fresh ginger for sale.

We are still taking orders for both the ginger and the turmeric by email at jkqualla@frontier.com .  Our ginger season is coming to a close.

We are at 3274 Qualla Rd, Hayesville, NC 28904. Follow the signs from Hwy 64, 3 miles west of the main stoplight in Hayesville.

Feel free to forward this email to friends who may be interested.


Karen Hurtubise and John Clarke

Qualla Berry Farm


Posted 11/2/2014 8:45pm by John Clarke & Karen Hurtubise.

Karen and John with Big Kahuna Ginger


Dear Friends,

Despite cold and snow outside, we have fresh baby ginger to harvest inside our hoophouse. We have begun harvesting the variety called Big Kahuna. Wow! Its big and we love it! Our other varieties we have been harvesting are Yellow Fin and Yellow Hawaiian. It's all good.

Thanks to all of you who have placed orders-it has been fun connecting with you and sharing this great crop.

We expect to have about another week to harvest and deliver fresh baby ginger until we sell out, and after November 13th the turmeric harvest will begin. So this week is the time to order ginger and receive a delivery, or make your appointment to stop by the farm or my office in Young Harris for pickup. The ginger freezes well so consider putting together a year's supply now. People have also told us they preserve it grated or sliced in wine or sherry in the fridge for up to a year. We are experimenting with making ginger pickles, gingerbread, cooking soup, and freezing bags of baby ginger to tide us over through this next year. 

Email is the best way to place your order--send to jkqualla@frontier.com . Remember to include the best way to contact you so we can arrange for pickup. The fresh baby ginger is priced at $15.00/lb and $1.25/oz for quantities under 1 pound.

Encourage friends and family to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity to enjoy NC locally grown ecoganic baby ginger. Thanksgiving is coming and fresh baby ginger can be used in gingerbread, pies, squash casseroles...be inventive and playful! 

We have fresh turmeric coming and this baby ginger is special and ready to enjoy and quantities are limited.  Please forward this email freely, post info on Facebook, do whatever you think will help us get this message out this week.  You can help direct interested folks to our website, www.quallaberryfarm.com . We have posted a number of ginger recipes there.

Thank you so much!

Karen Hurtubise and John Clarke

Qualla Berry Farm

3274 Qualla Rd

Hayesville, NC 28904

PS Drinking ginger tea with lemon and sourwood honey is a new evening ritual. We make the first infusion of 1 quart boiling water and approx. 2 tbsp grated ginger and steep for five minutes and then strain. Add a twist of organic lemon and a splash of sourwood honey. To the strained ginger we add another quart of boiling water and let it steep for an hour, strain again, then pour in a mason jar for cold refreshment the next day. It's delicious and soothing.

Posted 11/2/2014 7:16pm by John Clarke & Karen Hurtubise.

The Halloween prediction of snow and cold made us a little crazy but the snow was beautiful and somewhat insulating so it wasn't as cold Friday night compared to Saturday night's brrr 23 degrees. John had buttoned down the hoophouse on Thursday with insulation boards and we draped all the plants with white polyester spun row cover. The hoophouse stayed above freezing with only minor frost damage to some tips of the ginger and turmeric plants poking out of the row cover blankets. We did add a heater for this cold spell. This time of year is tricky for tender tropical perennials especially ginger. The critical thing we have to watch is soil temperature and it's still warm enough for the ginger and the turmeric to stay in the ground. When it gets down to 55 for ginger and 50 for turmeric, they have to come out!