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Bird Creek Farms renamed Harvest Land

Photo caption: Construction on Harvest Land’s 44,000-square-foot multipurpose building is nearly complete. A ribbon-cutting will take place on Dec. 21, 2020, at 1 p.m. CODY HAMMER/Osage News

The Osage Nation’s Bird Creek Farms has been renamed Harvest Land.

“There’s so much more going on out there than just a farm,” said Jann Hayman, director of the Nation’s Department of Natural Resources that now oversees operations. “We are farming, but we are also doing other things. Aquaponics, greenhouses, and more.”

Thanks to $7.4 million in Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act money, Harvest Land now has a 40,000-square-foot greenhouse and a 44,000-square-foot multipurpose building that includes two aquaponics systems. Construction is nearly complete on the new facilities and a ribbon-cutting is scheduled for Monday, Dec. 21 at 1 p.m.

Crops currently grown on the farmland include bell peppers, cantaloupe, cucumber, okra, pumpkins, squash, sweet corn, heirloom corn, tomatoes, and watermelons. But according to Hayman, that harvest is about to become bigger.

A Grow Plan developed by the University of Missouri’s Land of the Osage Research Center is introducing native species back to the area that the Osage used to traditionally harvest. That includes pawpaw trees, elderberry bushes, pecan trees, hickory nut trees and others, she said. They just received a shipment of the trees and bushes for a new orchard, she said. They will begin planting in the coming weeks.

Hayman said there are no plans to sell the produce locally, only to make it available for Osage tribal members. Currently, produce is given to the Nation’s school systems and elder programs.

In terms of hiring additional staff for the increased operations, she said they will begin hiring at Harvest Land as soon as everything is in order. They recently hired a horticulturist, she said.

Harvest Land is 74.22 acres and the Nation is currently waiting for approval by the Bureau of Indian Affairs to place the land into trust status. The land was first gifted to the Nation in 1990 by the Lynn family and rediscovered by the Standing Bear administration in 2014. Initially named Bird Creek Farms, the land and operations have been renamed Harvest Land.

Harvest Land is located at 102 Midland St., in Pawhuska. For more information on the Nation’s Department of Natural Resources, visit https://www.osagenation-nsn.gov/what-we-do/department-natural-resources


By

Shannon Shaw Duty


Original Publish Date: 2020-12-02 00:00:00

Author

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Shannon Shaw Duty
Shannon Shaw Dutyhttps://osagenews.org

Title: Editor

Email: sshaw@osagenation-nsn.gov

Twitter: @dutyshaw

Topic Expertise: Columnist, Culture, Community

Languages spoken: English, Osage (intermediate), Spanish (beginner)

Shannon Shaw Duty, Osage from the Grayhorse District, is the editor of the award-winning Osage News, the official independent media of the Osage Nation. She is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and a master’s degree in Legal Studies with an emphasis in Indigenous Peoples Law. She currently sits on the Freedom of Information Committee for the Society of Professional Journalists. She has served as a board member for LION Publishers, as Vice President for the Pawhuska Public Schools Board of Education, on the Board of Directors for the Native American Journalists Association (now Indigenous Journalists Association) and served as a board member and Chairwoman for the Pawhuska Johnson O’Malley Parent Committee. She is a Chips Quinn Scholar, a former instructor for the Freedom Forum’s Native American Journalism Career Conference and the Freedom Forum’s American Indian Journalism Institute. She is a former reporter for The Santa Fe New Mexican. She is a 2012 recipient of the Native American 40 Under 40 from the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development. In 2014 she helped lead the Osage News to receive NAJA's Elias Boudinot Free Press Award. The Osage News won Best Newspaper from the SPJ-Oklahoma Chapter in their division 2018-2022. Her award-winning work has been published in Indian Country Today, The Washington Post, the Center for Public Integrity, NPR, the Associated Press, Tulsa World and others. She currently resides in Pawhuska, Okla., with her husband and together they share six children, two dogs and two cats.
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