Cassie Young walked many a mile through fields of cotton and corn as a child.
At a young age, she developed a love for agriculture, and has turned that love in to a thriving, successful business.
Backyard Orchards, located on Highway 431 about 11 miles north of Eufaula, grows a variety of fruits and vegetables available at farmer’s markets and local stores. The seeds of Backyard Orchards was planted in Young’s mind after by her father.
“Farming is in our family,” said Young. “We have always done row crops, such as cotton, corn, peanuts, soy beans. Growing up, my sister, Allie, and I grew peaches and fruits for farm stands when we were younger. We grew up and decided we wanted to do something farm related. My dad saw how things were progressing in the business, and how the fresh, farm-to-table trend was going.”
Backyard Orchards plants, grows and sells a variety of fruits and vegetables, including strawberries, peaches, blueberries, squash, onions, potatoes, watermelons, cantaloupes, peas, broccoli, cabbage, collards, rutabagas, plums and pumpkins.
Young says each fruit or veggie has its own set of challenges when it comes to growing and picking. Some require more water, while others require more attention from the labor.
All the fresh produce is available at the Backyard Orchards store and at local farmer’s markets, but it is a non-grown treat that has many travelers – and locals – jumping on the breaks as they travel Highway 431.
“Our ice cream started out as soft serve, but then I began to figure out how to make our own and incorporate some of the fruits,” said Young. “It is now a hand-dipped ice cream and we do milkshakes with it. It has become a really big thing for us. It sells really well downtown, and it is picking up in Columbus as well.”
Situated on the Barbour/Russell County line, Backyard Orchards serves as the “gateway” to Eufaula so to speak. For many beach goers and travelers, Young’s farm is their first taste of Eufaula and Barbour County.
She feels it is her duty to make sure they are informed, excited and well-stocked with goodies before sending them on down the highway to Eufaula.
“I love being located where we are, because a lot of people that come here don’t know about Eufaula,” said Young. “I get a chance to introduce them to Eufaula and tell them about everything it has to offer – the new playground, the walking trail, the lake and the houses. I hope the people from Fort Mitchell, Columbus, Atlanta make their way to Eufaula and check it out. I love being a business owner, and wouldn’t be happier doing it any other way.”
For more information on Backyard Orchards, visit their website at www.BackyardOrchards.com, find them on Facebook or give them a call at 334.695.5875.