When farming is in your blood, it’s hard to keep your hands out of the dirt. That is the case for Bodden Towner George Bodden, who cannot help going back to the land.
“For me, it takes a whole lot of patience and a touch of insanity, but I love it,” said Mr. Bodden, who thinks farming is one of those things you have to love and can’t hurry, despite it being hot and hard work.
Mr. Bodden and his wife Jennifer run the Backyard Farmer Seasonal Delights brand, which uses plants and other organic materials sourced from his extensive garden.
Mr. Bodden got into farming when he built his first home in Prospect and wanted plants. Instead of buying them, he planted his own. He loved the experience so much, he opened a nursery. He said business was booming, but then everyone seemed to be getting into the nursery business and the company took a big fall. But that did not stop Mr. Bodden – he just uprooted, moved to Anton Bodden Drive in Bodden Town, and started all over again.
“Once you have the bug, it’s hard to give it up,” he said. Since that time, his backyard garden has proved an irresistible draw.
“There were times I wanted to give up but then I found myself placing one little seed in the ground, and then another, and it just takes off from there.”
At the back of the family home are rows of different types of peppers, as well as fruit trees such as June plum, avocado and mango. Aloe, scallion, big leaf thyme, lemongrass and other fresh herbs and vegetables can also be found. Pumpkin vines snake among the many pots of flowering trees, and in the shade house are a number of seedlings in pots, waiting to be transferred to the ground.
Mr. Bodden also raises birds including chickens, peacocks and white doves.
“Farming comes with its challenges. It’s especially hard when you have your stuff stolen, having to compete with foreign imports, and destruction from animals and insects, but the biggest pain of all is the chickens and the iguanas,” Mr. Bodden said.
These days, he is expanding his business interests, working with his wife Jennifer.
The husband-and-wife team own Life Managed Group, which consists of the Backyard Farmer, Seasonal Delights, Backyard Gardeners and The Hair Studio Salon and Spa.
“What we don’t sell from the garden, the wife uses in all her natural blends of pepper sauces, body scrubs and lotions, food dishes and cakes,” he said.
Mr. Bodden tells his wife he will grow and harvest the plants, but “the magic that happens inside the home is her baby.”