From the Good Earth: Making a Stand

Edible Sarasota Fall 2012.

Farming in the Burbs

If you ever have the pleasure to talk with Bill Pischer, owner of North Sarasota’s Jessica’s Organic Farm, you’ll certainly find yourself on the receiving end of some serious opinions. But they aren’t unfounded, and if you listen long enough, well, you’ll find that the man has some points.


Since 1980, Bill has ran one of Sarasota’s best-kept organic utopias, a five-acre farm tucked in north county, south of Desoto Rd. One of Florida’s first fully organic farms, they started off small.


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Two days a week, customer's swarm Jessica's Stand...

Daily Planet, Sarasota Edition, March 20-26, 2002

In one of Sarasota's uneventful subdivisions, across the street from Crystal Lakes golf course, is an incongruous sight: DeSoto Lakes Organics farm. Two days a week, customers swarm Jessica's Stand, the farm's on-location retail outlet. The attraction: fresh out of the ground, certified organically grown produce.

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Pure and Simple

This is an article that ran in sarasota magazine in January, 2000.  Since then, the farm has been renamed after Jessica Pischer, the owners' eldest daughter, and the produce stand has expanded to offer one of the best selections of organic produce in Florida.

For 20 years, DeSoto Lakes Organic Farm has been growing fresh and healthy vegetables in the heart of Sarasota.

Just a short drive east of U.S. 301 off DeSoto Road, surrounded by suburbia and a stone’s throw from a golf course, is a ramshackle collection of two houses, a greenhouse and a big, rickety roadside stand. It’s all surrounded by row after row of lush green plants; and if you’re lucky enough to drive by on Friday afternoon or Saturday morning, you can pull over and purchase some of the freshest, most flavorful produce you’ll ever taste in your life.

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Organic Farming in Suburbia

Original story is from Southern Sustainable Farming, March 1996, published by Southern SAWG.

While touring the five-acre market garden at DeSoto Lakes Organics, I was struck by the serenity of the place. Songbirds sang from tall pines on the edge of the property as owner Bill Pischer and two employees quietly prepared garden beds and transplanted seedlings. Even though a subdivision of houses looms across the street to the north and a golf course lies 300 yards to the east, sounds were muffled in the middle of this oasis.

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