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North Star Farms
P.O. Box 164
Carpio, N.D. 58725
(701) 720-2635

gardendwellers FARM

The Oxygen Bar

April 20, 2014

In 2011 North Star Farms had an employee who was very dedicated, worked hard, was loyal and loved organic produce. However, she was a smoker.

That's obviously not a deterrent to working on a farm, but she once made a comment that has stuck with us and probably will for a long time to come.

She said there are two "bars" in this small community of Carpio. First, there is the tavern in a traditional sense, where you sit at a stool, sipping on tap beer and chatting it up with your neighbors while chain smoking. Keep in mind, 2011 was before smoking was banned in all public buildings in North Dakota.

Second, there's the Oxygen Bar. Every time she went into the greenhouse to water the plants, she talked about the "Oxygen Bar,"  made in reference to all the plants in the greenhouse that give off oxygen as a byproduct. 

This smoker loved her time in the "Oxygen Bar." She said it was easier to breathe and there were times we had issues trying to pull her out of the greenhouse to carry out her other duties.

This memory came back to me on Saturday while I was seeding my peppers for 2014. As the greenhouse is nearly full already and the brassica plants flourishing, it seemed like quite an enjoyable work day, despite the temperature hovering at 100 degrees all afternoon. 

Of course, I love working around plants. But physically, it must have been all the additional oxygen and humidity inside the greenhouse that would provide such a pleasant experience at that temperature.

We've never coined that phrase or capitalized on its potential. Perhaps we should apply for an agri-tourism grant in which we could give tours to smokers to help them breathe easier for an hour or two.

Happy Easter everyone!

 
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