At Malabar Farm, every person, pig and plant serves a purpose -- even waste used to fuel the farm. Overripe vegetable scraps and leftovers are feed for the pigs. Manure from farm animals is composted and used as a soil amendment to help plants thrive and grow naturally. Soy beans become bio-diesel fuel for the farm's tractors. The all-natural vegetables, farm-raised beef, poultry and pork are served at the Malabar Farm Restaurant and are available for visitors to purchase. Even the trees produce maple syrup for sale and to enjoy at the restaurant.
The conserving doesn’t just apply to the animals and plants at the farm. The Education Center at Malabar Farm features hands-on activities, exhibits and earth friendly construction. With education being the key to Malabar Farm's sustainability program, exhibits and demonstrations explain the benefits of techniques such as: crop rotation, no-till seeding, strip cropping, contour plowing, green manure, wind breaks, cover crops, water conservation and minimizing energy inputs. Even the building is a testament to conservation, incorporating a host of green technologies, from its solar-powered, wireless weather station to a hybrid energy system of solar panels. Six recycled plastic rain barrels collect rain water for landscape garden and general watering. A new solar-powered trash compactor reduces the waste from some five 30-gallon trash containers into just one and a new tank-free hot water heater was just installed. Future plans include the installation of a UV light for waste water treatment and a micro-hydroelectric system for one of the barns.
Malabar Farm doesn’t just educate and demonstrate, it provides visitors with a destination experience unlike any other, offering: guided tours of the home and farm, hiking, cross country skiing, horseback trails, farm chores, hayrides, square dancing, special annual events, fishing, camping, milk a cow or goat, collect fresh eggs, build a bird or bat house, stay overnight at the Hostel, Browse the library, feed the chickens and ducks, attend a naturalist program, sample fresh homemade fudge, hold a wedding or family reunion, dig and feed worms, stargaze, visit the Wetlands Observation Pier, visit the maple sugar house or the Ohio Songbird Aviary and more.
Mansfield, Ohio offers a wealth of other unusual travel adventures, including everything from overnight ghost hunts in a haunted former state prison to a museum that houses the world’s first robot. A destination unlike any other, the area’s world-class motorsports, breathtaking scenery and rural and hometown experiences are complimented by hiking, biking, golf, cross-country and downhill skiing, bird watching and loads more unique adventures. Complete area travel information and a free Visitors Guide are available at (800) 642-8282 or www.mansfieldtourism.com.