Harley and Susan Soltes © Harley Soltes

Host Clint Weckerly interviews local farmer and operator of Bow Hill Blueberries, Harley Soltes, in the fourth of a six-part series that examines the history of multi-generational farming traditions and the future of local agriculture in Skagit County.

While Harley and his wife and equal hand in the business, Susan, do not hail from families who have been farming in the Valley for generations, they are sustaining the oldest blueberry farm in the valley and are foundational members of Skagit’s very own Puget Sound Food Hub, which offers an incredibly opportunity for generations-old and new farmers alike to keep local farming alive.

Since taking over in 2011, the Soltes family has focused on rejuvenating the soil and transitioning these historic fields to Certified Organic. The farm specializes in heirloom berries and has over 4500 bushes that are a combination of Rubel, Stanley, Jersey, and Blue Crop.

Speak Up, Speak Out* is a half-hour weekly radio show committed to community, peace, justice, and non-violence issues. The show airs on community radio stations across Skagit, Whatcom and Island counties:

KSVR 91.7 FM (Skagit Valley College) Wednesdays 5:00 PM PT, rebroadcast Sundays 8:00 PM PT
KSVU 90.1 FM, Hamilton, Sundays 8:00 PM and Thursdays 8:00 AM PT
KMRE 102.3 FM, Bellingham, Sundays 11:00 AM and Wednesdays 7:30 AM PT
KSJU 91.9 FM, Friday Harbor
KAOS 89.3 FM, Olympia, Thursdays 5:30 PM PT

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*Speak Up, Speak Out is not affiliated with the Skagit Democrats